Last night Laci Green posted a video on her Tumblr which I thought was very sad. She spoke about how she struggles with depression and how reading about horrible things that happen in the world and the rude comments that people leave on her work often get her down an awful lot. She also spoke about how she wishes that people with depression weren’t so stigmatised and how she hates that having a mental illness will often lead people to erroneously believe that you are crazy and/or to treat you as if you cannot cope. (Go over there and watch it if you like, I was going to post the video here, but, since it’s unlisted, I thought I had better not.)
Laci Green is a role model of mine (and, along with Earl Hamner Jr., is one of the only non-fictional ones too) and I have to admit that I was rather shocked to see her in such a vulnerable state. I suppose when we look up to somebody, it’s easy to forget that they are just regular person and have their own personal problems too. It was through Laci Green that I got more into feminism, before watching her videos I thought of myself as ‘pro-feminist’ but I didn’t really know about many of the important issues in our society and her videos opened my eyes to them. I guess I just wish that she thought she was as wonderful as I think she is.
Another part of the video that particularly affected me, was when she talked about the stigma attached to people with depression. I would say that probably the majority of my friends suffer / have suffered from depression at some point or another (and some people, funnily enough, have thought I may do too, which seems unlikely to me, but then again, I could relate to some of the things Laci was saying in the video), so it clearly is not a rare thing and I hate to think that any of them have come across any of the issues she mentioned. If somebody tells me that they have depression I just think “How sad, poor them” but I don’t treat them any differently, and you shouldn’t do, but I guess a lot of people do, which only adds to the problems.
Unfortunately I don’t have much of a conclusion to today’s post. Originally I had an anecdote planned for today, but I wrote this instead to keep things topical. I guess I’ll end be saying this: do you know anybody with a mental health problem? And do you treat them any differently? If so, you should change that. It may not even be a conscious thing and it doesn’t make you a bad person, but it’s the kind of thing we should always be wary of.
(Also, today is Friday, so don’t miss today’s Finger Puppet Show!)