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To wonder why everyone suddenly has a mental health issue?

(355 Posts)

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VogueVVague Wed 30-May-18 12:51:49

Dont get me wrong, im not talking about people who have struggled with long term clinical depression, schizophrenia etc.

But it seems like everyone now has some form of mental issue.

Hey, as a teenager and young adult i was a freaking mess, a teenage runaway, drugs, alcohol, confusing feelings, rage, destruction, depression, fear, shyness sometimes, anxiety. Just thought it was a normal part of transitioning.

Now as a fully formed adult some things still make me feel anxious, mny times i do feel unmotivated, depressed on a kind of existential level, sometimes nervous, sometimes not wanting to do something because it involves big gatherings or lots of strangers, which lets face it, can be awkard and uncomfortable for most people.

Isnt that just life and being human?
It feels like i meet so many people who "have" anxiety or borderline or bipolar. Especially teens. Arent they just experiencing adolescence?

Is social media making us believe the normal default is "happy and relaxed", when thats just one setting and humans are actually also designed to be down or nervous sometimes too?

MeanTangerine Wed 30-May-18 12:53:43

MH issues are really, really common. They always have been, it's just that in the past few years we've had a lot of public awareness campaigns and more people feel able to talk about it.

Bombardier25966 Wed 30-May-18 12:55:12

If someone has borderline personality disorder or bipolar then they have been diagnosed by a psychiatrist. Are you suggesting you know better, or that those conditions are any less serious than schizophrenia?

I can't say I know many teens at all with those diagnoses.

partydownseason2 Wed 30-May-18 12:56:03

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

PurpleDaisies Wed 30-May-18 12:56:54


ICantCopeAnymore Wed 30-May-18 12:57:48

What a horrible, goady post.

Guavaf1sh Wed 30-May-18 12:58:37

These posts are common but they don’t last long

MaggieMeldrum Wed 30-May-18 12:59:18

Do you have a mental health issue op? Your recent threads make me feel like you do?

VogueVVague Wed 30-May-18 13:00:57

No but a wonder if there is a trend aspect to MH and specific conditions.

For example i know a lot of people with depression feel they have to hide their diagosis. In contrast i have had 2 people openly tell me they were bipolar despite the conversation being irrelevant.

Similarly its weird you never hear someone tell you they are schizophrenic. But people will be open about being borderline.

Seems like some are seen as glamorous, some still have stigma.

stargirl1701 Wed 30-May-18 13:01:16

The result of inter generational trauma in our society as described by Carol Craig.

The impact of ACEs on attachment. I think the accepted figure is 40% of UK adults do not have secure attachment profiles (not RAD though).

CranberryCrush Wed 30-May-18 13:01:17

I think you hit the nail on the head when you asked isn't it just being human?
What is it to be human? Not very long ago, being human meant being part of a community or tribe. It meant hunting and gathering. And living as more of part of a whole.
Very quickly in the grand scale of things, people have become isolated, are living less healthily, less sunshine, fresh food, more pollution. Add in stress of exams, pressure to conform and the fact that the world is full on for teenagers 24/7 with the advent of technology and social media in particular and it is no surprise that we are seeing an increase in mental health issues.

WinnersClub Wed 30-May-18 13:01:18

I don’t think that’s the spirit in which OP posted. I think they are genuinely curious about the rise in MH and wishes to educate themself. Just my humble opinion.

Sometimes it’s very hard asking questions about MH because it’s very easy to offend people however you word it.

Rinoachicken Wed 30-May-18 13:01:28

anyone under the age is 21 is EXTREMELY unlikely to have been officially diagnosed with borderline.

Rinoachicken Wed 30-May-18 13:03:08

And borderline personality disorder is one the most stigmatised and misunderstood conditions out there, especially amongst the medical profession

whatislionshare Wed 30-May-18 13:03:10

There was a news report recently that said teenagers were self diagnosing anxiety and popping illegal prescription pills during exam time. (xanax?)

I'm not sure but it seems like 'anxiety' is the new buzz word. "you're giving me anxiety" meaning you're stressing me out, but I don 'have' anxiety. You know? I think it comes from the US where prescription drugs are more regularly used.

I think there's a lot to be said for understanding the degree and consistency that determines a mental health problem compared to a period of being down, stressed, anxious due to situational factors.

I have experienced depression a few times but I wouldn't consider myself to have a mental health issue.

PaintBySticker Wed 30-May-18 13:03:35

I’ve had periods of mental illness. I’m well at the moment and hope to be so for many years / forever. Do I still get anxious sometimes and feel low? Yes I do. Is it the same as when I was ill? No it isn’t. I’ll probably always have a tendency towards being anxious but it’s manageable and doesn’t significantly impact my life.

See your doctor if you’re struggling and don’t begrudge other people help if they’re struggling.

Loonoon Wed 30-May-18 13:04:00

Mental health issues are no more or less common than they have ever been. What has changed is that they are now more widely recognised and openly discussed than before.

I can remember being in a discussion at uni when someone piped up that he 'didn't believe in anorexia' as it was a modern phenomenon (in a psychotherapy module where you'd think he'd know better). I pointed out that history and historic fiction is full of instances of women starving themselves to death but back then it was called 'going into a decline' not anorexia. That shut himself up.

Bombardier25966 Wed 30-May-18 13:04:46

Seems like some are seen as glamorous, some still have stigma.

There's nothing glamorous about bipolar.

I'm calling goady fuck too. If you want to learn about mental health issues then ask questions. Don't make (ignorant) sweeping generalisations.

A4710Rider Wed 30-May-18 13:04:47

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

MrsBobtonTrent Wed 30-May-18 13:04:57

I wonder as well. Not doubting the suffering that people go through at all. But an awful lot of Anxiety about now. Are we more open about it, or is modern life driving us into it, or is it driven by commercial interests?

Also autism - never came across it at school as a child, but 4-5 AS children in each of my children’s classes. Is it on the rise, or are we better at diagnosing it, or were these children hidden away 40 years ago?

It would be interesting to discuss without goadiness I think.

NoFucksImAQueen Wed 30-May-18 13:05:08

what mean said. there isn't lots more people with mental health issues, people just feel more able to talk about it now.
it MIGHT be the case that some people jump on the bandwagon as it's a big topic right now but I think for the most part people do have these struggles and don't bloody want them because poor mental health is hell

PaintBySticker Wed 30-May-18 13:06:20

“Seems like some are seen as glamorous, some still have stigma.”

Can’t say I felt glamorous believing my son was going to die and no-one else was taking it seriously except me.

Listener73 Wed 30-May-18 13:07:51

I'm not sure it is accurate to say "everyone suddenly has a mental health issue".

Firstly it is incorrect to say that "everyone" does, secondly this is not something that has "suddenly" happened people have had mental health issues for years it is just becoming easier (although still very difficult) to talk about them.

There are obviously many different variants on mental health as there are with physical health. If someone hasn't had a huge break down but has had some battles with anxiety, then that is a mental health issue. Similarly you can have a cold and not be well, you don't need to have had a major illness like cancer to be unwell.

In a sense you are right when you say "Isnt that just life and being human?" mental health is a part of life for many people, it's not easy and it's not pleasant. However the fact that many people are affected by it doesn't mean we should dismiss it or diminish its impact.

VogueVVague Wed 30-May-18 13:08:17

Give it a rest. Im not being goady. Im interested in the rise of these diagnoses and whether its just that we feel more pressure to be happy shiny perfect super sociable people these days so when we dont we think theres something wrong with us.

For what its worth i dont have a MH problem, however i have long suspected i may be aspergers.

Thats why i like opening conversations on MN. I am curious about social phenomena and lots of things really.

Furano Wed 30-May-18 13:09:54

I think it’s multi faceted.

Partly a rise in awareness and openness in discussing MH.

Partly our human situation isnt great for MH and is getting worse as other posters have elaborated.

Partly a desire to have a label on something and self diagnose ‘I have anxiety’ instead of understanding that feeling some anxiety is a normal response to stressful situations eg exams, some social events etc.

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