Mental Health: The Elephant in the Room

Unfortunately, we have a lot of stigma about mental health and about people with mental health issues.

When I talk about mental health, a lot of people might think that I am talking about crazy people. That is not true. Mental health wide range of life challenges like everyday stress, exam anxiety, clinical depression, psychosis, violence, etc.

Mental health is not about crazy people. Mental health is about people.

Generally, people are uncomfortable with the things that they don’t know or understand, which is why efforts to raise public awareness is important. Above all else, we should take it upon ourselves to make ourselves aware through self-education so that we become well-informed people.

When we don’t understand, we don’t know how to properly respond. For example, if you know someone with clinical depression, don’t tell that person to suck it up and move on like it’s no big deal. Clinical depression is a real illness, as real as physical illness. You wouldn’t say to someone with diabetes to suck it up and move on, would you?

I was once among the people who don’t understand these things. For example, I once thought that people who need counseling are people with “loose screws in the head”, so to speak. I always thought that was a funny expression to say but now after I’ve educated myself more and more about mental health, I think the expression is just plain cruel.

I am not against humour. I am all for it. I like good humour every now and then. But some things shouldn’t be made fun of.

There is nothing wrong with seeking mental health professionals when you have mental health issues, just like there is nothing wrong with seeking a doctor when you have a fever.

Issues related to mental health are more common than we think it is. Because of the stigma that’s hovering over our heads, people with serious mental health issues might be reluctant to come out and seek help because they’re afraid of how people might view them.

Hence, when people with the problems aren’t reaching out, we think that there are no problems.

But just because you don’t see it, doesn’t mean that it’s not there.

Elephant in the room (idiom): there is an obvious problem or difficult situation that people do not want to talk about.

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Aiman Azlan is a motivational speaker, a vlogger, and an author. With an aptitute for psychology, he likes to address topics related to emotional, mental, and spiritual well being. He has traveled all over Malaysia and beyond to speak to predominantly youth audience, speaking about various youth-related topics such as identity, love, family relationship, productivity, community, and self-worth. He now resides in Perlis with his wife and son.