To quote the prophet, Shania Twain?
Don’t impress me much.
And that’s coming from a recreational hypochondriac. Any given day of the week, I can probably self-(mis)diagnose the minorest of maladies.
But I do it on a lark and for my own entertainment…not sympathy.
Last Sunday, the Silver Fox and I went exploring up in Forest Park, Portland’s lush and gorgeous urban forest in the West Hills. There’s something like 40 miles of hiking trails there that will make you forget you’re in a city. We had wanted to see a new pedestrian bridge the city installed to keep Stupid Americans from running across one of Portland’s busiest streets – that is nothing but cars careening around blind curves at that point – to get from the Forest Park trails to the Washington Park trails.
Oh, we’ve got trails here, I tell ya.
Well, short story long, I twisted my knee. I self-diagnosed with a sprain. The next day, as I hobbled up the stairs into work, my colleague pointed out that I may have torn my ACL and then goes into my bleak prospects for a normal life.
Damn it! He’s probably right…
So I prepared myself for the inevitable amputation.
I’m walking fine, now…for the record. But don’t let that stop you from sending get well cash – er…cards.
Like I said, though, my self-diagnosing is purely recreational.
Turning to social media, though?
There’s dipshits that should be running an asylum running amok in social media instead, self-diagnosing with anxiety and depression.
This pisses me off.
First, there are people really suffering from these mental health issues.
Second, being too lazy or hungover to get ready to go somewhere and meet friends or go to work isn’t anxiety, it’s…well…laziness.
Not that some of these people may not have a legitimate claim – regardless of who diagnosed it. But what are they doing about it?
Seeking treatment? 👍🏽
Seeking sympathy on Facebook? 👎🏽
Seriously, if you need help…get it. I’m all for it! I’ve been to therapy many times in my life and it’s extremely beneficial. I also know that because of the stigma of weakness around mental health, the people who get help are the bravest of folk.
We need to talk about mental health to remove that stigma from getting mental help so that it becomes a healthy norm…like going to the gym. Now that I mention it, if the people incessantly going to the gym got treated for their narcissism and body issues (I can “self”-diagnose others, too), the world would probably be a much better place because people around them wouldn’t be so anxious or depressed.
But I digress, it’s one thing to be anxious. That does not mean you have anxiety.
Just like if I go to the gym once, I don’t have abs.
Likewise, just because you find yourself depressed does not equate to having depression.
Kind of how when someone takes a good selfie and posts it to Instagram, they aren’t a model.
Anyone need a moment after that gut punch?
When you cavalierly mis-use those terms, you do a disservice to those legitimately suffering their way to mental health. You’re not raising awareness, you’re trivializing someone else’s pain.
Knock it off.