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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:08 pm 
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I think Mr. Shankly's point is valid about us not knowing what's going on with someone else, though. When I say I have anxiety, it's not up to me to prove to you that I have a diagnosed medical condition and explain my history with that to prove that I'm being real and not hyperbolic.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:15 pm 
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Here's a whole list of definitions for anxiety. Approximately one of them mentions that the source is "usually ill-defined" and another mentions that it's a semi-permanent state. None of them have pre-requisite levels of interference with daily functioning before you're allowed to use the term.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&tbo= ... d=0CCwQkQ4

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:18 pm 
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People mean well so it's not a pet peeve or anything for me but something I notice when the topic of my schizophrenic bro comes up everyone assumes that he's regressed to some vegetative state, like he's lost all his considerable talent and intelligence and past memories. He can still create beautiful things and he's still brilliant but he just can't seem to share it with the world anymore the way he used to but there's that assumption that every single part of him is lost now. I know it's just ignorance, though so I don't take it personally, it's just how widely held these incorrect beliefs are.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 5:23 pm 
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Fee wrote:
I think Mr. Shankly's point is valid about us not knowing what's going on with someone else, though. When I say I have anxiety, it's not up to me to prove to you that I have a diagnosed medical condition and explain my history with that to prove that I'm being real and not hyperbolic.

Yes, exactly. Also, some people are more high-functioning than others and/or don't readily show emotions to the extent that someone else does, or their illness manifests in a different way. It's incredibly hurtful to tell someone they can't say or feel a certain way because they don't follow any one persons narrowly defined idea of what it is to suffer from X mental illness. We have this problem in the field of mental health, especially with insurance companies and the DSM. Not everyone suffers or displays the same symptoms in our very narrow set of checklists so often times people are left out to fend on their own.

paprikapapaya wrote:
Or is it that folks with mental illness should just suck it up and let people co-opt medical definitions for kicks?

Please don't put words in my mouth like that.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:19 pm 
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Mr. Shankly wrote:
It's incredibly hurtful to tell someone they can't say or feel a certain way because they don't follow any one persons narrowly defined idea of what it is to suffer from X mental illness. We have this problem in the field of mental health, especially with insurance companies and the DSM. Not everyone suffers or displays the same symptoms in our very narrow set of checklists so often times people are left out to fend on their own.



I do not think anyone is trying to diagnose or tell someone if their symptoms are severe enough to be categorized as a mental illness. I think we are just saying that often times people misuse words and it sucks and it hurts. Personally when someone is offhandedly using the term OCD without knowing what it is, it is insulting to me and others who suffer from it. This is a good quote: "OCD" is not an adjective; and more to the point, it is not a synonym for fastidious or anal-retentive - Psychology Today.

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Last edited by missmuffcake on Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:24 pm 
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The wikipedia article on Anxiety states exactly what I have maintained from the beginning, in the first paragraph (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anxiety):
"However, anxiety should not be confused with fear, which is more of a dreaded feeling about something which appears intimidating and can overcome an individual.[5]"

There's shades of gray with things like anxiety and depression, but anxiety is to fear what depression is to being bummed. It's just not the same thing. To use the term "anxiety" to define a state of being temporarily aroused because of a specific stressor that will eventually subside is as offensive to me as someone saying they're "rhubarbed" because they forgot their cellphone. It's something I struggle with everyday. It doesn't go away. It's painfully not the same thing as a simple fear. And to suggest otherwise is calloused and grossly underestimating how serious mental illness can be.

I, nor anyone, can decide who can say something, but yeah, I think I'm allowed to think someone's a dink for saying, "I'm soooo anxious, ugh, I have a big test tomorrow"

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:31 pm 
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oops, double post. sorry!

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:49 pm 
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paprikapapaya wrote:
The wikipedia article on Anxiety states exactly what I have maintained from the beginning, in the first paragraph (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anxiety):
"However, anxiety should not be confused with fear, which is more of a dreaded feeling about something which appears intimidating and can overcome an individual.[5]"

There's shades of gray with things like anxiety and depression, but anxiety is to fear what depression is to being bummed. It's just not the same thing. To use the term "anxiety" to define a state of being temporarily aroused because of a specific stressor that will eventually subside is as offensive to me as someone saying they're "rhubarbed" because they forgot their cellphone. It's something I struggle with everyday. It doesn't go away. It's painfully not the same thing as a simple fear. And to suggest otherwise is calloused and grossly underestimating how serious mental illness can be.

I, nor anyone, can decide who can say something, but yeah, I think I'm allowed to think someone's a dink for saying, "I'm soooo anxious, ugh, I have a big test tomorrow"



Except that the same wiki article goes on to describe test anxiety later down the page. It's what Robin Marantz Henig would otherwise call "test fear" I suppose. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anxiety#Te ... ce_anxiety

So yeah, you can feel like they're dinks for using the word correctly, but I'm not sure why.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:09 pm 
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I stand corrected on that one particular instance, but I still think there is plenty of room to argue that people misuse the term quite liberally.

That's a HUGE part of mental health stigma: people are discouraged from speaking about their issues because well-meaning people don't understand the severity of it, and use their own, normal, everyday stresses to try to compare. How many times those of us with diganosed mental illnesses have heard, "Oh, we all have days like that!"

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Last edited by paprikapapaya on Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:11 pm 
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Test anxiety is a real thing. We had to call 911 on a student who had a non-responsive panic attack last year. There are kids who have anxiety that takes that form to debilitating degrees. And people scoff at them and suggest that they need to just study more or suck it up. This isn't even just anecdata--I mean schools give kids medical accommodations for this stuff. I'm glad it's taken seriously these days.

For me, I often have some low level anxiety, but if I get very stressed, I'll usually have a focus for the anxiety, but it's usually not that thing that is a problem at all. Like, I'll randomly feel like the world will end and something awful will happen if I have to go teach my GED class (that I love, and is very comfortable and not at all stressful). That happened last week, and it sucked. I was better once I got to work and nothing bad happened, and then the anxiety just went back to being there until I has to get gas the next morning and suddenly that seemed the most awful thing. I don't really know how to describe it.

I'm sorry you have to deal with anxiety, paprika. Mine is generally not debilitating unless my depression is also bad, so I really can't imagine living with it day to day.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:18 pm 
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That really is true, pp. People are so judgemental because they think that they can suck up whatever crepe they have so why can't you? I get the same thing with my back problem--all the marathon runners at work pretty much sneer at my disability because they have back pain too, but they just suck it up and take advil.

The one good thing I can say is that schools are now much more educated and compassionate when it comes to helping kids who deal with mental illness. More kids are now diagnosed and treated than ever before, so awareness is creepingly better. When I was in the same school district 20 years ago, there was no compassion, only threats and them wanting to toss me out as quickly as possible, they made my family feel like we were all bad people.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:26 pm 
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I donno, I've suffered debilitating illness for coming on two decades now, I don't think it would help me to take offence at people's use of words connected to my symptoms. I prefer to consider context, tone and intent before getting offended these days.


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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:53 pm 
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lavawitch wrote:

The one good thing I can say is that schools are now much more educated and compassionate when it comes to helping kids who deal with mental illness.



I started therapy when I was in first grade because a teacher said I did not like playing with others. My parents went with it for awhile until they could not afford it. A lot of insurance does not cover mental health stuff...I wish it did, for kids and adults.

Here is a pet peeve of mine, maybe others can relate. If you are having a bad day, do people try to blame it on your illness? I had a headache and PMS last month, I was not in a happy mood, my mom started yelling at me saying "what is it your OCD or something?"...My parents blame every little thing on my mental health...some times I just do not feel like hanging out with my damn parents.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:57 pm 
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Not perfect still, no. But all the schools have school psychologists and kids get accommodations for emotional disabilities. It's a start, at least. We have resources through the school for kids now, but more importantly, teachers are expected to be compassionate and helpful.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:43 pm 
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Mr. Shankly wrote:
Fee wrote:
I think Mr. Shankly's point is valid about us not knowing what's going on with someone else, though. When I say I have anxiety, it's not up to me to prove to you that I have a diagnosed medical condition and explain my history with that to prove that I'm being real and not hyperbolic.

Yes, exactly. Also, some people are more high-functioning than others and/or don't readily show emotions to the extent that someone else does, or their illness manifests in a different way. It's incredibly hurtful to tell someone they can't say or feel a certain way because they don't follow any one persons narrowly defined idea of what it is to suffer from X mental illness. We have this problem in the field of mental health, especially with insurance companies and the DSM. Not everyone suffers or displays the same symptoms in our very narrow set of checklists so often times people are left out to fend on their own.

paprikapapaya wrote:
Or is it that folks with mental illness should just suck it up and let people co-opt medical definitions for kicks?

Please don't put words in my mouth like that.


Mr. Shankly, was this what you were referring to? (From the first part of the Wikipedia article...)
Quote:
Anxiety is considered to be a normal reaction to a stressor. It may help an individual to deal with a demanding situation by prompting them to cope with it. However, when anxiety becomes overwhelming, it may fall under the classification of an anxiety disorder.


Anxiety and an anxiety disorder do not seem to mean the same thing. I don't know if it's reasonable to expect people to restrict the use of a word that is part of the common lexicon simply because it also has a medical use.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:25 pm 
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honest question, something I've wondered for a while. what's the feeling when referring to someone as: crazy, psycho and mental (and others?)? I think I refer to people (and situations) as crazy, but not the others. it's not really a diagnosis/disorder so it seems more okay, but it could still be taken similarly to other things in this thread I suppose!

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:30 pm 
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Vantine wrote:
Anxiety and an anxiety disorder do not seem to mean the same thing. I don't know if it's reasonable to expect people to restrict the use of a word that is part of the common lexicon simply because it also has a medical use.


I think this is an important point. Similar to the terms obsessive and/or compulsive not being the same as OCD. I have anxiety all the time. It does affect my life, sometimes strongly, but not to the point of being a disorder (I think). I also feel the same way about depressive disorder/depression - I think it should be okay, in general, to say you feel depressed. The word does mean something else beyond the DSM diagnosis. I think it is different to say something is a feeling versus a disorder. I do find it annoying when people use the word OCD as a joke though; however, the person I know that tosses around OCD the most actually has been diagnosed with OCD. I used to be her roommate and if she hadn't specifically told me she was diagnosed with OCD, I wouldn't have known. I kind of thought she was just being flippant at first.

On the other hand, when it comes to pet peeves, I think people should be able to be irritated about whatever they want, so there's that.


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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 10:40 pm 
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joshua wrote:
honest question, something I've wondered for a while. what's the feeling when referring to someone as: crazy, psycho and mental (and others?)? I think I refer to people (and situations) as crazy, but not the others. it's not really a diagnosis/disorder so it seems more okay, but it could still be taken similarly to other things in this thread I suppose!


Good question. I have mixed feelings about the word crazy. Sometimes I think it is stigmatizing and other times I think it is normalizing (like, we're all crazy, so what does that even mean?). I think the other ones are more clear cut as stigmatizing. I have a lot of patients with various mental disorders. In clinic I try to stick to words like "weird" as opposed to "crazy" if I am just chit-chatting with patients/family/staff. In social contexts, I think I say crazy and nuts a fair amount.


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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:43 pm 
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paprikapapaya wrote:
I stand corrected on that one particular instance, but I still think there is plenty of room to argue that people misuse the term quite liberally.

So it's okay for you to think of people as a "dink" for using a term in a way you don't agree with when you didn't even fully understand the term until Squeak posted about it? You don't find that arrogant and judgmental?

Quote:
That's a HUGE part of mental health stigma: people are discouraged from speaking about their issues because well-meaning people don't understand the severity of it, and use their own, normal, everyday stresses to try to compare. How many times those of us with diganosed mental illnesses have heard, "Oh, we all have days like that!"

Which is exactly what you are doing in this thread. This whole thing has been, "I feel judged for my real mental illness therefore I will judge others when they seem not as mentally ill as I."

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2013 11:55 pm 
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Vantine wrote:
Mr. Shankly, was this what you were referring to? (From the first part of the Wikipedia article...)
Quote:
Anxiety is considered to be a normal reaction to a stressor. It may help an individual to deal with a demanding situation by prompting them to cope with it. However, when anxiety becomes overwhelming, it may fall under the classification of an anxiety disorder.


Anxiety and an anxiety disorder do not seem to mean the same thing. I don't know if it's reasonable to expect people to restrict the use of a word that is part of the common lexicon simply because it also has a medical use.

Kind of. One point is that rarely when you encounter someone will they say, "I have generalized anxiety disorder/agoraphobia/borderline personality disorder (contains a fear of abandonment)/anorexia nervosa (fear of gaining weight, fear of not being perfect, etc)," but they would say something like, "I'm so anxious/I have anxiety/etc" Other people aren't entitled to know someone else's feelings or diagnosis, though, so policing someone's words is ridiculously judgmental and arrogant. Also, as you can see, some anxieties are not actually anxiety disorders but are a component of another mental illness. Another point is that some people are more higher functioning than others which is why you'll hear stories about alcoholics and people addicted to drugs who lead normal lives from the outside. Also, not everyone fits nice and snug into the checklist of symptoms for X disorder but that does not mean they're any less mentally ill.

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 Post subject: Re: Mental Health Pet Peeves
PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:22 am 
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I think this thread is hurtful and judgmental and not really going anywhere awesome. So bye.

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