The Stigma On Mental Health: The Real Problem

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10 Oct 2016 - General

Here in the Philippines and in many countries, especially in Asia, Mental Health is very much neglected and as a result there is a continuing rise in suicide rates. I don't know in your country, but in my country, the STIGMA is real. Filipinos tuck away mental health issues because it's mess you do not want to show off. My sister was diagnosed bipolar in highschool and I have an aunt currently in a private home for schizoprenia--mental disease is real for me. 

Years ago a close friend of mine tried to kill himself, and after being treated for "overdose", the doctor required that he undergo therapy. He went one time and then stopped going. He also refused to take the medications. His parents said, "We know you better than those doctors, you can talk to us"

Why are people unable to grasp mental disease seriously? On the photo I attached this is the FB discussion under Senator Hontiveros' campaign for MENTAL HEALTH. I will translate some of the comments for those who cannot understand Tagalog:

  • This is so stupid. Filipinos are considered one of the happiest people on Earth. Wait, let me find the link for that. 
  • Filipinos are generally happy. It's impossible for us to become depressed. Maybe some are just depressed because they cannot buy drugs. 
  • So what? You people in the Senate should just commit harakiri 
  • Was this statement confirmed by a specialist or is this just drawn from her own conclusion?
  • Hey Hontiveros! There are too many problems and you make a decision to tackle this worthless cause?

It's very painful to read, huh? The stigma is real and the consequence of this stigma is painful and serious. How can we abolish this stigma?



Unfortunately this stigma will be difficult to address because it stems from both cultural traditional beliefs and lack of education. Historically, even in Europe and the Americas, people with mental health illnesses were ostracized from the community. In fact, there was even a period in time when even the church participated in isolating these people. At the darkest point in history, mentally ill individuals were thought of as witches and were either burned to death or jailed for life. It wasn&...
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Yeah, stigma to mental health problem is a great problem in south asian region. In my country, people invariably mark psychiatric patients as crazy or mad and avoid them. But as we know most of these patient are suffering from neurosis and they can lead a normal life easily. And even those who are psychotic, can be treated effectively. But due to the social stigma, the patients do not get mental support from friends and family which is very important for successful treatment of mental illness. I...
 (Total 127 words)