Language of mental illness “others” people: it’s a human rights violation. Wake up.

To separate out the sensitive and call them mentally ill is yet another disservice and retraumatization to our most sensitive citizens. Seriously. We need to cut it out.

Becoming conscious is risky business.

The language of mental illness “others” people and is a human rights violation committed mindlessly by our entire culture. Forced treatment is the most obvious violence against us but microaggressions happen daily everywhere.

When separation and microaggressions are legitimized and put into public policy and discourse the way it’s been done we become second class citizens and subhumans and it’s all very acceptable as far as most are concerned.

This is an energetic reality whether people are aware of it or not. This is oppression and bigotry systemically supported and then denied by almost everyone including those most seriously affected. We internalize it and come to believe these lies.

Just like racism and yet, it’s not recognized yet (not widely…certainly there are those who fight for broad systemic change who do get it, but we are a tiny minority at this point).

“Mentally ill” is a slur for those with the greatest sensitivities to the harmful conditioning we all face and are subject to. We might say that Everyone is Mentally Ill and that some of us who are labeled as such and thus ostracized by these labels are actually the least in denial about what is happening to us and to our planet.

So yes,  those of us labeled mentally ill are often closer to sanity than most of society. Language matters here and calling the most vulnerable among as mentally ill as though everyone isn’t seriously affected is a form of doublespeak. Very 1984. A manipulation that helps people remain deep in denial so that we can keep on committing atrocities against one another and the planet. Everyone is Mentally Ill (yes, conditioned to the point of soul – loss) in this society and those of us labeled are often far less so even though many of us may not yet be aware of this reality.

“It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a sick society.” Krishnamurti

I get that it’s useful to use the language of illness for folks who attach to the illness construct as well so that we might communicate and reach out to everyone. It remains all the more important to look at and be explicit about how language is used and to clarify what we mean if we do use such language on occasion for the sake of communicating with those who might not otherwise hear us if we didn’t use such language as a bridge.

Illness used in a clinical sense within psychiatry and the establishment is often used to oppress and keep down and disenfranchise armies of sensitives (our most vulnerable and gifted members of society — healers, indeed). We need these folks fit and healthy in order to heal the world.

Wake up.

The Purpose of Life and the Human Conditioning

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About Monica Cassani

Author/Editor Beyond Meds: Everything Matters

6 Responses

  1. Ursula Parnitzke

    Monica,
    Thank you for your words. They are a bit too provocative, yet they are also reassuring, because they relate to experiences I have in my own life.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fundamentally I agree.

      About 10 years ago, I was seeing a therapist (M.A.L.P) who worked for the county. Once I used the term “mentally ill” and he respectfully told me that term was now politically incorrect, and it’s more acceptable to say “someone with a mental illness”, or something to that effect.

      When I read mainstream publications, or even my community paper, I can’t say I really notice term “mentally ill” very often anymore, if ever. I do notice “mental illness”, and it does bother me. When I write about mental health issues now, I use the phrase “mental (or emotional health) issues”, and am much more conscious of the wording, and have been for years.

      If I’m talking with someone casually, and they use the phrase “mental illness”, I usually don’t offer my opinion on it during that conversation, but might bring it up for discussion later. I know what they mean at the time, and that their heart is in the right place.

      As I understand it, using blanket terms like “illness” and “disease” to describe the condition of having mental health issues (which generally are caused by abuse, neglect, or trauma) began as a way to help market pharmaceutical drugs. Having the public believe in a disease makes it easier for the public to accept that mental health issues can be treated with drugs.

      Some good that may have come out of that is that: people suffering from depression were less likely to be told, “you’re wallowing in self-pity” or “snap out of it”.

      Though from what I’ve observed, once people who are suffering from depression, for instance, believe it’s a disease, they think they have no control, are disempowered, and may not put as much focus, or none at all, on all the different integrative methods of feeling better (such as those mentioned on this web site).

      As for your use of the phrase “human rights violation”: it’s not the way I would have worded it, but I definitely see how it could be labelled as such. With as many different types of human rights violations that are happening in the world, I start to wonder if people are getting desensitized to the phrase “human rights violation”. I tend to think that domestic abuse among family members, or brothers, would constitute a human rights violation, by its very definition. So I guess I would not necessarily use the phrase, but I would, as you did in this article, point out the negative results of using the term “mentally ill” and how it is parallel to racism.

      I’ll email you what I wrote, but I don’t think you’ll find any surprises, Monica. 🙂

      Like

  2. Ah yes, I failed to address those further points you made. I didn’t mean to imply that “human rights violation” shouldn’t be associated with all of what you wrote, or that I thought you shouldn’t use that phrasing.

    Liked by 1 person

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