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Facing Stigma From Within the Mental Health Community

Facing Stigma From Within the Mental Health Community

Stigma from within the mental health community shocked me last week at a mental health fair. Stigma comes from anywhere-even from people who should know better.

Stigma from within the mental health community is the last place I expected to come across stigma for mental illnesses. Last Wednesday, I went to a mental health event that was about mental illness in general, as opposed to focused on one kind or another. I was at the mental health fair, called MindFest, with the Canadian BFRB Support Network (CBSN), Canada’s only non-profit geared towards raising awareness and providing resources for people with body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs). Since BFRBs are a lesser-known group of disorders, I expected questions, but I didn’t expect stigma from within the mental health community — the people in attendance.

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Mental Health Awareness Weeks Are Important to Combat Stigma

Mental Health Awareness Weeks Are Important to Combat Stigma

It may seem like there are too many awareness weeks, but mental health awareness weeks play a role in combatting mental illness stigma. Read to find out how.

Awareness weeks for mental health are critical. The sheer mention of an awareness week of any sort may already have you groaning. I know I’ve heard and seen comments from people complaining about how there’s an awareness week for everything. That could be true, but they’re a vital part of the dissemination of information and breaking down stigmas associated with whatever cause they’re for. For causes such as mental illness awareness, awareness weeks are an especially poignant way to demystify what mental illnesses are and are not.

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Use Self-Care Before Mental Health Stigma Breaks You Down

Use Self-Care Before Mental Health Stigma Breaks You Down

Mental health stigma can break you down to the point of triggering your mental illness. That makes self-care as important as mental health advocacy. Here's why.

We can be broken down by mental health stigma. Mental health stigma surrounds us everywhere, whether we’re aware of it or not — in movies, television shows, news, literature, and the list goes on. Despite each source generally rehashing the same stigma-fuelled notions and images (or perhaps because of it), the fact that there’s so much stigma can be really draining and we ought to take a moment to practice self-care before mental health stigma breaks us down.

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Taking Care of Ourselves When Facing Mental Health Stigma

Taking Care of Ourselves When Facing Mental Health Stigma

Taking care of ourselves is more important than taking on mental health stigma. By taking care of ourselves, we become stronger to fight against stigma.

We need to take care of ourselves when facing mental health stigma. A little while ago, I was accused of pandering to mental health stigmatizers because in the blog in question I wasn’t going for a throwdown against them. There is a reason for that, which is, even though I share tips how to fight stigma and approach stigmatizers, my main concern lies with the mental health community and the damage that can be done to the people in it when they see stigma all around them. We need to take care of ourselves.

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How to Respond to Mental Health Stigma If You’re Frustrated

How to Respond to Mental Health Stigma If You’re Frustrated

Sometimes mental health stigma makes us frustrated and we want to go off on the person spewing it. Don't. Instead, respond to mental health stigma like this.

Although I understand the huge amount of frustration that comes from responding to mental health stigma, I also feel that there are two ways to handle irritation. One way is getting mad, worked up, and starting to sling names, threats, and sarcasm around like there’s no tomorrow. The other is to approach these stigmatizers with a level head and facts, and knowing when to disengage. In the world of the Internet, it’s pretty easy to go about the former, but in this blog, I’m going to explain why I think the latter is a much more effective way to respond to mental health stigma.

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Clickbait Contributes to Mental Health Stigma

Clickbait Contributes to Mental Health Stigma

Using clickbait for stories about mental illness contributes to mental health stigma. Find out how clickbait links damage the perception of mental illness here.

Clickbait can increase mental health stigma. In the fast-paced world of the Internet, where everyone is vying for even a moment of attention, clickbait has become the way to get people to come to your page, even for sensitive matters such as people’s personal stories of mental illness. Unfortunately, sensationalism takes over and stories get warped to where they sometimes don’t even reflect reality. In stories of mental illness, sensationalistic clickbait contributes heavily to stigma.

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Mental Health Stigma and Discrimination: We Need Both Terms

Mental Health Stigma and Discrimination: We Need Both Terms

Should we replace of the phrase 'mental health stigma' with 'discrimination'? No. Here's why both stigma and discrimination help us discuss mental illness.

The terms “stigma” and “discrimination” are both used in the world of mental health. There have been debates surfacing about how to talk about people’s negative perceptions and behaviors towards both mental illness and those with mental illness. There are those who say we should stop calling stigma by that term and refer to it as discrimination alone, but, while the two terms are often linked, they are not quite the same thing and having stigma and discrimination separately is beneficial.

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Tips for Coping with Mental Illness Stigma at School

Tips for Coping with Mental Illness Stigma at School

Coping with mental illness stigma at school may not be comfortable, but you must do it. Read for some tips on how to deal with mental illness stigma at school.

Mental illness stigma in school is a reality. Depending on where you live, school may already be back in session after the summer break or you could be waiting for that first day back to school in early September. Whatever the case, back-to-school can be a tough time for kids with mental illness whether it’s personal challenges of getting through the day or the challenge of dealing with peers. Even if your child really enjoys academics, back-to-school might cause distress. I know it did for me, so I want to offer a few tips for dealing with mental illness stigma in school since that’s what I was often most worried about.

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How to Talk About Mental Health With Loved Ones

How to Talk About Mental Health With Loved Ones

Talking about mental health, especially when mental illness is involved, can be difficult. Read for tips on how to talk about mental health and avoid stigma.

Some people aren’t sure where to start when they want to talk about mental health or illness with a loved one. Knowing how to talk about mental illness is important, but broaching the subject can be difficult for all parties involved. Whether you’re on the mental illness or mental wellness side of the equation, stress over the talk can lead to not having the conversation at all or going about it all the wrong way. Is there a good way to talk about mental health?

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Remove Success and Failure from Our Mental Health Vocabulary

Remove Success and Failure from Our Mental Health Vocabulary

Success and failure are common words in conversations about mental health. Read to see the impact they have and why we should change the language we use.

Success and failure are pretty common words in our everyday lives and they’re also prominent in conversations about mental health. When we see someone in recovery of any sort, we say they’re successful; we do this with ourselves, too. It’s often only when we’re acknowledging our own mental health recovery progress that failure comes into the mix. We feel like failures if we can’t succeed like those around us; we feel like failures if we have setbacks. It is because of that that I feel it would be better to remove the words success and failure from our mental health vocabulary.

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