02 September 2011

It's just a game, a joke, right?

If you're on Facebook, I feel pretty safe in saying it's a sure thing that you've seen the various FB status games where there's a circumstance and you tag people from your friends list as certain characters in the situation. I didn't paticipate in most of tem, although I did do the Zombie Apocalypse one b/c, well, it's Zombies. Most of them I just ignored, unless I was tagged in one and then I laughed at being the sniper or whatever. However, there is one that I've seen that bothers me a little

You're in a mental hospital use the first six people on your list on your profile.
1. Person who drove you crazy:
2. Person who signed you in:
3. Your doctor:
4. Person in the corner drooling on themselves:
5. Your roommate:
6. Person who helps you break out:

I think my first problem with this is that there's still such a big stigma associated with mental health problems and being admitted to a psychiatric facility that I don't think it's something that should be made light of and used as a joke. And I think it was Number 4 that bothered me the most: "Person in the corner drooling on themselves". In both my stays at Laurel Ridge, there wasn't anyone drooling on themselves. And if there were, it wouldn't be something to laugh at and make fun of.

I'm sure I'm taking this one personally because I've BTDT. I've been admitted to a hospital twice. I've struggled with the shame, guilt, and fear of telling anyone that I had PosPartum Depression. I've struggled with the shame, guilt, and fear of even asking for help. When I did ask for help, I was terrified that they were going to take my daughter away or get CPS involved and say that until I was "over" the PPD I had to move out of the house and not be around her. I dealt with being upset that I had to stop breastfeeding my daughter at 3 months old because the meds they put me on weren't something I could take and safely nurse her. I've dealt with the people who say "Just make up your mind to get over it". With this last pregnancy, I struggled with deciding whether or not to take Zoloft at 38 weeks as a preventative measure. I'm sure that most people who are posting this aren't trying to mock those who have dealt with mental health problems, but the fact is that things like this do make light of it, and they can be very hurtful to those who have struggled with PPD, BiPolar, PTSD, MPD, etc. I doubt that people even realize that this type of thing can help perpetuate the stereotypes that need to be dealt a death blow: It's something to be laughed at, it's not serious, it's a joke.

Please know that I'm not trying to make anyone feel bad, I just want to try to shed some light on it from another perspective.

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