Thread: stigma
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Old 02-08-2006, 07:43 PM   #6
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Join Date: Dec 2003
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Re: stigma

I believe that age made a big difference in how I feel about stigma - because it is a sure bet that most people who are ignorant about mental illness aren't going to get any better.

When I was in my 20's & 30's I cringed at the thought of people "knowing" about me. Now, in my fifties I really don't care whether they know or not and pick and choose on an individual basis.

I'm no longer bothered by the words people use without thinking: crazy, nuts, animaniacs, etc. They don't know any better.
Although, once when someone went a little too far I said quietly, "You don't have anyone in your family with a mental illness, do you...."
I think it made them think for just a minute anyway - maybe they'll be a teeny bit better educated than if I got angry, you know?

The time that stigma DOES bother me is when wonderful people come here whose family doesn't understand, doesn't try to learn, and acts like Bipolar Disorder is a behavioral issue alone.
THAT gets to me...