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Cin Started It! – Mental Health

September 23rd, 2009

sexycrazyJust a forewarning, I’m done tiptoeing around this topic.  I’m letting it all hang out.  And I’m not even gonna apologize if I offend anyone! I know… I’m a rebel!

My first thought when I read Cin’s post on mental health was “Wait… You’re cheating on me?”And then she explained that I’m a moron for thinking for a second that she’d cheat on me and I felt about an inch tall.

Then I started thinking about all the things wrong with the way mental health issues are perceived.  Especially in the online “BDSM community”.

First, it’s not just us kinksters blaming all our woes on our mental issues.  M’s vanilla daughter (who’s over 18 so I can hate on her all I want) nonstop blames all the fucked up shit she does (and she does some pretty fucked up shit) on her mental illnesses (that we’re not 100% sure she has cause we’ve spoken to her therapists who aren’t 100% sure she’s not faking it for attention).  And she’s not, by any means, the only one.

But we, as a country and as a society, foster this behavior.  We find out someone’s been wronged in some way and we immediately start in with the “Oh my god.  I’m so sorry! Is there anything I can do for you?”s and the “She can’t help it.  X, Y and Z happened to her!”s and the “You should be nice to him.  He had to deal with blahzayblah growing up.”s.  It’s become cool and hip to have a mental illness or be a victim.  And it certainly wins a person more attention and, occasionally, lots of dough.

Let’s back up a bit, shall we?

When I talk about my mental illnesses, I’m often making fun of them.  Usually, I call my vast array of diagnoses “diagnonsense”.  You’ll occasionally hear me call therapy “they-rape-me” and a therapist “the rapist”.  I don’t hold the mental health profession in the highest regard because I’m walking, talking proof that they seriously don’t know what the fuck they’re doing. 

Some of the diagnoses I’ve been given – not in any specific order or from any one specific psychiatrist – are as follows:

  • Chronic clinical depression with a side of ADHD
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Borderline personality disorder
  • AD(H)D
  • Severe anxiety disorder
  • Severe social anxiety
  • Agoraphobia (What?)
  • Self-loathing (Apparently, that’s a diagnosis, now.  Medicate-able, even.)
  • Insomnia
  • Dissociative disorder (I’m not really sure where they got that one.)
  • Hypochondria (M believes this one wholeheartedly.  Lol.)
  • Severe paranoia (This one’s real.  The difference between me and most with this issue is, I can usually tell the difference between my paranoia and reality.)
  • “Psychosis” (Whatever that means.)
  • Bulimia
  • “Situational” anorexia nervosa (We just make them up as we go along, don’t ya know)

There’s more.  Things to do with rage and such.  But you get the idea.

I don’t doubt at least some of it’s true.  Not in the least.  I am one fucked up individual.  I used to think I was just weird, but there seriously is a line drawn in the sand.  On the one side, you’re normal.  On the other, you’re a certifiable nut job.  And depending on where society has drawn the line… Who am I kidding? I always fall on the nut job side.  But I’m not entirely convinced I have more than one or two of these disorders.

I mean… Bipolar disorder? Everyone has mood swings.  Are mine extreme enough to be considered bipolar disorder? Sometimes but not always.

Chronic clinical depression? Probably not so much anymore, but that’s considered treatable and, occasionally, curable.  So that makes sense.

ADD? I so do not have… Look! The garbage man’s here, finally! ~ducks~

Borderline personality disorder.  That’s a toughy.  Because, loosely translated, borderline personality, in shrink speak, means “attention whore drama queen”.

I am, without a doubt, an attention whore with a flair for the dramatic.  But not necessarily in the negative sense.  I don’t always go out of my way to make people drop whatever they’re doing and pay attention to me.  Not intentionally, anyway.  But I do so love to be touched and hugged and talked to and such.  And I will gladly give you my best rendition of Taming of the Shrew when I don’t mean to.

Which, ya know, maybe these bitches claiming they have bipolar disorder and don’t have borderline personality disorder instead.  That would totally make sense.  Attention whore drama queen, remember?

Basically, what it all boils down to with me is, there’s something wrong with me, but they can’t figure out what it is.  Which probably means there’s actually nothing wrong with me besides the fact that I am completely and utterly bizarre.  So, naturally, they have to stuff me in this box with a label so they feel better about me mingling with the “normal” people.

So let’s see. We’ve covered me, the people who claim to have disorders but don’t, the people who foster this claiming of nonexistent disorders…

I’ve been talking about my frustration with certain groups I belong to for ages.  But I’ve completely avoided one of the main reasons I’m frustrated with one of them.

Not too long ago, a thread saying pretty close to what Cinnamon said in her post went up in a group I haven’t been part of all that long.  And someone who mods in a group I have belonged to for a while took it a step further by saying people who have mental illness issues a) should always be medicated and b) shouldn’t be involved in an M/s relationship because they could “go crazy” and endanger others, make shit up to get people in trouble, and on and on and on went the list of things people with mental illness may or may not do in the course of a relationship.

But ya know, you might as well be saying a person with mental illness should never be in a relationship at all.  That they shouldn’t be allowed to mingle with the general public.  Because they could do the *exact same thing* in a vanilla setting.

And what’s more, not all people with mental illness are liars.  Not all people with mental illness suddenly “go crazy”.  Not all people who are diagnosed with bipolar disorder get so out of control, on or off meds, that those around them are in danger.

Which brings me to: Mental illness has such a stigma these days that if you tell someone you have any mental illness, they automatically assume you barbecue babies.  I keep telling you people, I’ve only had Buffalo style.

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  1. September 23rd, 2009 at 20:55 | #1

    I have two sister plus me who are all diagnosed Bi-polar. Why does that bother me? Because those who actually have it differ greatly from those who claim to have it and were likely misdiagnosed. Having a mental disorder is a daily battle and that is why I left FetLife. It got to be bull****, I got tired of all the claims being made. It was like a playground and people used excuses to cover themselves.

    I don’t think it’s those who have the illnesses that give them the stigmas, it is the ones who got so good at faking it that they were diagnosed that make people think we are all crazies. I agree with what you have to say here. People are people, and just because a mental illness is involved doesn’t mean that they cannot have relationships and responsibility. Good post…I like it!

  2. September 24th, 2009 at 06:41 | #2

    I’m annoyed at people who use it as an excuse for asshat behaviour and yup it resonates quite closely. x

  3. Joji
    September 29th, 2009 at 18:12 | #3

    I get really tired of this too. Seriously. I have depression issues. I know I have trust issues but I refuse to use them as a crutch. We have all had our problems and trauma in our own ways. The difference is in how you cope. You can suck it up and accept that shit happens, sometimes bad shit to very good people, or you can cry you’re broken and blame everything on some minor thing that happened to them growing up.

    I admit and acknowledge there are people out there who are genuinely ill. I know there are. My ex was one.

    What Im tired of is the ones who use it as a scapegoat seriously. But thats society. We like to blame everyone and our brother for our problems and if we’re not blaming it on our parents, our friends, the neighbours we’re blaming it on voices and the devil and every other thing we can think of.

    There was a case here not long ago of a woman whom kidnapped a baby, 3 days old from the hospital, if that and blamed it on her mental state. She was abused as a child, she didnt have a functional relationship with her parents. She got a slap on the wrist. I know a ton of a people who were abused in way or another. They didn’t kidnap a baby and are now fully functional adults. It made me so mad.

    As for the rest, we are all fucked up in one way of another. Some it is a coping mechanism. I have no doubt that my penchant for being tied up and helpless and used is somehow indirectly connected to a child hood trauma I suffered as a child. It doesnt mean I’m incapable of having an adult relationship. It means I’m aware that I’m warped I make sure I’m aware of the risks involved and if shit goes wrong I accept responsibility.

    Having a disorder doesnt make you any less human than having a different skin color, or having a handicap. But it doesnt mean you get a get out of jail free pass either. Responsible adults will treat and work with their illness and adapt.

    and i apologizie in advance if this has stepped on anytoes. I may/may not have gotten off topic.

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