• Karim Moussalek

Stigma and perception of mental illness.

Updated: Feb 6, 2021

Unfortunately mental health problems aren’t easily understood. Sometimes described as ‘invisible illnesses’ which makes it harder for people to empathise with. There are also parts of society, individuals that are more judgemental and have pre existing ideas of how mentally ill people behave, what they look like and how unstable they are.

The reality is there are people who lead extremely fulfilling, healthy lives and can manage their illness fine through either a combination of medication and therapies or perhaps completely holistic approaches. Each person is unique and what stigmatisation does is exacerbate that persons illness, whether that be a workplace, society, family or partner. That’s why we need to end this misunderstanding by providing real help and support when people need it the most.

Because people that have an illness of the mind deserve just as much compassion and empathy as someone with a physical one. A brief set of bullet points that I believe can help.

  • Education - the less ignorance there is and the more people learn about that facts leads to less misunderstanding.

  • Empathy - really trying to put yourself in that individuals shoes and wondering how you would feel if you were in their situation.

  • Speaking up and addressing a situation if you witness it. That doesn’t mean starting a full out brawl, but stick up and support someone if you see this type of abuse. It shows the individual their not alone and can help prevent the abuser repeating their toxic behaviour.

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