We Need to Learn New Words

I got up a couple of hours ago so I could run some errands around town, before the Saturday morning/afternoon masses came out. I was semi-successful in getting them done; I had about a three-hour wait for my oil change. I chose to go back later because I don’t have the patience to sit in a car shop for three hours, especially on a Saturday morning that’s a nice as this one is.

So when I came into my office, I jumped on my computer (like I’m doing now) and went to bphope.com, the site that I’ve been talking about for the last couple of weeks and currently contributing material to. First, debut piece is still getting good views and a couple of new comments. If you haven’t read it yet, click here. As I was just scanning what new posts have come up in the last few days, I ran into an interesting one from another new guest blogger. Her name is Erika Nielsen, and she’s actually a musician in Canada who worked with people like Kanye West. Her piece is called “Nope. The Weather Is Not Bipolar: How to Educate Others in Finding Another Adjective“, and it touches on things that people say about everyday things and uses mental health words to describe them, and the damaging effects of doing so.

As she pointed out, we’re all guilty of it. In comparing to herself, I sometimes find myself doing the same thing. But after learning about my own diagnosis, I had to teach myself to pull away from that habit. As I started pulling away, I noticed just how much and inappropriately these terms, such as bipolar, are being used. It irritates the shit out of me. To me, it’s a trivialization of the real concerns; it makes them seem unreal. For example, it irritates the living hell out of me when someone calls themselves bipolar, in order to justify some stupid shit that they have done, like getting into arguments or fights with people because you have a temper problem. Just because you like to fight doesn’t make you bipolar.

They say that it takes at least two generations for things that we’ve started today to be fully in effect. So the changes that we seek to change will not happen overnight. But if we start now, in 20 years or so we will could very well possibly come close to eliminate some of these stigmas and other harmful ways towards mental illness. I had to correct myself after getting hit with what I used to consider an embarrassing diagnosis. I think it’s time everyone else do the same.

Check out her post. I’ll catch you later.

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