Entry #9: Stress vs Mental Illness

Most people seems like don’t have idea what is stress and what is mental illness. If in mechanics or physics, stress is a pressure or tension that exerts on a physical material. For example, pushing a button. The pushing action causing stress on the physical material which is the button in this case. In psychological, stress is the feeling of pressure or strain that is caused by some demanding or overwhelming situation. Psychological stress can be good and sometimes can be bad. Depend on how does the person handle the situation.

Psychological stress can be reduced by doing some steps such as live a healthy life, avoid confrontation, have enough stress, be active and many more.

What about mental illness? It is a chemical imbalance in a person brain that may or may not triggered by a stressful situation. The stressful situation is just a trigger. Without the situation, if someone have a chemical imbalance in his/her brain, mental illness is a certainty. 

There are a lot misconceptions and stigma on mental illness. Some “clever” people think that mental illness can be cured by relaxing or praying or whatever crap that people without knowledge on the subject matter can think about to be superior and clever to other people. What most people don’t understand is there are little difference between mental and physical illness. Both illnesses are beyond our control. Both type of illnesses require medical assistance. However people never think mental illness is a serious thing. At least not until that person with mental illness began to act “crazy”.

As you know, I have a mental illness called bipolar disorder. What is it? It’s a mood disorder, where the sufferer will alternate between very high mood (which called mania episode) and very low mood (which called as depressive episode). Each episode lasted for months. In mania episode, the sufferer will have very high energy and very impulsive.. It’s not like someone just drink an energy drink, but very energetic. I am a morbidly obese person, but once during my manic episode, I was climbing (more like running) 4 flight of stairs. And you know what, I didn’t feel a thing. Why did I do that? Until today, I have no idea. In another different situation, I was about to jump from level 5 of a building because I was convinced that I have a flying superpower. I was about to jump, until I realised that I’m scare of high. It may sound stupid, but it saved my life.

Now, depression is another different situation compared to mania. Remember that I told you about stress? Depression is way worst. Although my illness is bipolar, but most of the time, I’m having depression episode. If mania you have ridiculously amount of energy, in depression, you have almost none energy at all. You will hate yourself, you will hate single little everything.

I can go on and on about manic and depressive episodes, but I want to differentiate between stress and mental illness. Stress doesn’t need medications but mental illness must take medications in order to function. I hate it when people making some idiotic statement that just relax, or pray, or do some fun activities, and the mental illness will go away. How stupid can you be. If someone have a broken leg, why didn’t you suggest them to walk it of? Why there is double standards between physical and mental illness? The stigma against mental illness doesn’t help the person with the illness. Why there is sympathy to people with physical illness, but not to people with mental illness? Please be fair to us. We need your support, not your irrational judgment.

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