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tynamite's answer « Is it important to share our psychological disorders, diagnoses and symptoms?

What are the reasons why we should share? What are the difficulties we face in doing so?

Who is our audience, and where do we find them? Who is not our audience, and should we change our message in order to accommodate them?

Many of us are displaced of our rights, alienated of our freedoms, even dispossessed of our faculties; while others of us are estranged from our advocates, or at-odds with our care-givers. Is it important that we should disclose such circumstances? If we choose to speak up, will we even be heard? If we are heard, will we even be believed? And even if we are not believed, should we still keep trying?
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tynamite
tynamite's avatar
I've read everyone's answers and upvoted them back in May, so everything about this topic should have been covered. I was a2a'ed this anyway, so here goes.

I'm going to exclude disclosing psychological (and behavioural) disorders, diagnosis and symptoms to employers and health insurance companies, for reasons that are bleedingly obvious. I'll just focus on Interpersonal Interaction. Gabriell Gaston Croft is under the impression that if we all shared everything about ourselves to one another, that the world would be a more peaceful and harmonious place. However things aren't that simple. It seems like I'll have to spell it out.

Stigma - Introduction
One thing that there is for people with mental illness, is a stigma. There also is one for people with behavioural or psychological disorders, although not a taboo as it's lessened, the stigma still exists.

People talk about individuality and embracing people's differences, but another thing that we long for is to belong in a group, and be able to relate to each other - all by sharing a common ground with others. Some people like to be different (or unique), but what we all don't want to have, is to feel different. Because to feel different, we'll feel that we are far removed from everyone else, that it'll be impossible to converse with them as another person would. Someone feeling that they are starkly different for being who they are, would be horrible for them.

Stigma - Listing
The first stigma one might face for revealing their conditions, would be to be labelled as "having issues". Unlike America, it is frowned upon in Britain to go to counselling, as that person will be told that they "have issues", and having issues, would mean that someone is messed up in the head, and it would be a pejorative. It would change the dynamic of the group, if someone crying was told they had issues straight after they cried, for example. To be seen as having issues, is a sign of weakness, and it would trivialise their concerns.

The second stigma one might face for revealing their conditions, would be to be classed as socially inept or inadequate. This is something that happens all the time for people who usually have problems in giving eye contact. People always think they're autistic. (Yes they do.) People might make allowances for them and be patient and kinder to them, or they might class them as awkward, disengaged and hard to talk to.

The third stigma one might face for revealing their conditions, would be to be seen as deranged. They could be looked down upon and classed as ASPD, and disorder that is associated to it. This would change the social dynamic beyond recognition.

Stigma - Should you take the risk and share it?

If something about you negatively impacts your interactions with other people to the extent that you consider it an infringement on yourself as well as them, then you should say, as it's already inadvertently hampering. Otherwise no. For example, if I had selective mutism, I would not say.

Put another way, if you know you have a problem interacting with people, as people aren't a psychic to read your mind, unless you tell them that you have a problem with Interpersonal Interaction, everything you do, they'll treat you as if you were a normal person saying it, so if you do something off-place, they'll judge you for it as if it was anyone else doing it. As they don't understand you, there'll be a breakdown in communication because of this, so you should say. If I had Aspergers Syndrome or any other autism, I would say.

Depression
In our 21st century society, depression is something that is becoming more common, due to how our environment is causing us to have a hectic way of life whilst we are entrenched in capitalism.

Depending on how depressed someone is, they may not know if they are depressed or not, especially if they are managing to do normal day to day things, and have their memory intact.

Some people have chronic depression, which is a mild form of depression that comes and goes in various random intervals in someone's life. Sometimes they feel strangely sad and sometimes they don't. If someone has chronic depression, the chances are they won't even know that it's a condition they need to look up on Google, as the underlying sadness they feel in their life (at times), they won't see as a problem.

Some people in this world have feelings (or memories) that are repressed, whether that is to do with chronic depression, Reactive Attachment Disorder, or anything else that they have or has happened in their lives, and for their own health (and protection) they would like to forget about them and pretend that they don't exist, voluntarily or not. It can be painful to remember certain incidents or continuing themes which are happening in one's lives. For the sake of further explaining, some people don't watch the news as it makes them cry, and some people feel like they want to vomit when people make lies about them. Such sensitivity isn't enough to cast someone off as being depressed or anything to do with issues, but people who go through avoidance, are people who should be helped. Avoidance means people who like to avoid certain things and skirt around issues.

Although some people don't like to be reminded of certain things, if they are not ready to talk about it, you shouldn't force them. However, if they are avoiding it, then you should at all costs, ensure that they do, and further faciliate that they express themselves. For example, if you wanted to ask someone why they are a brick wall or ask them why they are crying and they don't want to talk about it, leave it at that. However, if you notice that they spontaneoulsy choose to stop talking about a certain topic that is being spoken about, or they mention something then drop it straight afterwards, then you should ask them what the matter is and ensure that they say it.

Conclusion

Overall, the answer is no to the public. People should not be open about these things most of the time. I thought that was already expressed in all the other answers. Sorry, the world does not work like that.

Also I know someone here with a mental disorder who writes anonymous answers when they are off their rockers, and they get slated anonymously by the same people who call that person their friends. So it seems like Quora is not the utopia for people with disorders or syndromes after all. I've had someone else complain to me about the treatment of answers about people with autism as well.
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