Most people take Tylenol when they have a headache. Tums when they have heartburn. Sudafed when they have a cold.
Why then, is it so controversial for people to take medications for mental illnesses?
Just because you can't see the symptoms of mental illness (disorders, syndromes, etc.), doesn't make them any less real.
Why do so many people scoff at mental illness and call it an excuse? Sure, it is sometimes. But it's not always. People who are truly in the grips of a mental illness do not always have control over what they are doing.
Mental illness is so tragically misunderstood in this country. Many people just have zero sympathy for an illness that does not have physical symptoms.
I'll be the first to admit that it's hard to figure out if someone is truly mentally ill or just a flawed personality. This is a huge issue with Andrew's "mother", C. She has claimed several different mental illnesses in her lifetime, whatever seems to fit the occasion. Sometimes she says she's on meds, sometimes she says she's not. I have no idea what the truth is. I used to have so much sympathy for her, and blamed most of her problems on her illness....but you have to wonder at some point, is that just a crutch? Is she just a screwed up person claiming illness to shirk responsbility for her own actions? I don't know.
I do know that mental illness needs to be better understood. And people shouldn't judge until they've walked in someone else's shoes.
"Madness is tonic and invigorating. It makes the sane more sane. The only ones who are unable to profit by it are the insane." Henry Miller
"I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity." Edgar Allen Poe
"I am not, strictly speaking, mad, for my mind is absolutely normal in the intervals, and even more so than before. But during the attacks it is terrible - and then I lose consciousness of everything. But that spurs me on to work and to seriousness, as a miner who is always in danger makese haste in what he does." Vincent Van Gogh