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Jacquelyn Nahman

United States

Treating Others Right

March 22, 2016

    Patients suffering from autoimmune diseases are overlooked due to their lack of presence at all times.  During my freshman year of high school I started regularly seeing a therapist for my depression.  I had recently been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that was hard on me in itself, so adding depression to the pain I was already feeling was very hard.  I would stay up at night with pains in my stomach as well as unsettling thoughts about anything and everything, feeling like my life was turning upside down.  High school students around the world suffer from depression and it is not seriously addressed among the age group well enough or students not suffering from a mental illness will dismiss the effects they have on some of their peers.  Mental illnesses are overlooked and ridiculed in society today due to their invisibility and lack of seriousness they are shown in today’s culture and society.
    According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), one in fifteen children ages thirteen to eighteen will suffer from a mental illness, around half of them dropping out of high school due to their illness.  Mental illness is a serious issue and should not be taken as a joke or ignored.  Many people do not treat those with mental illnesses the respect they deserve because even though they may look like they are fine on the outside they may be breaking inside.  At the amount and rate of students and adolescents diagnosed with mental illnesses, few seek treatment and many are mistreated.  According to teenmentalhealth.com, around four percent of the total healthcare budget [in the United States] is spent on mental health which is not enough.  The care for mental illnesses is very expensive, making it hard to access for a majority of the country.  Some people with mental illnesses are mistreated because they may act differently to certain situations or think differently.  Suicide is the third most common cause of death in teens around the world and not all but many suicide victims suffer from a mental illness.  When you are depressed and feeling suicidal something goes on inside your head where you do not think straight but nobody knows but you because they cannot see it.  This is one way mental illnesses can be overlooked: by never being heard by onlookers.
    Mental illnesses can be taken very lightly, especially among adolescents.  As the brain is developing kids mature and some develop mental illnesses that are sometimes very impeding on one’s daily activities.  Mental illnesses come in extremities, as do other illnesses, such as feeling so bad you feel as if you cannot get out of bed all day to moderately making you feel bad but you are still able to do your everyday activities, but it is hard for people without mental illnesses to understand and relate to those who have them so they use them as adjectives to describe how they are feeling, saying things such as “I had a bad day.  I’m depressed,” or “My moods have been bipolar.”  Using mental illnesses as slang is inappropriate and offensive to people suffer from them.  Since they are used as slang and as criticisms so often that they assume it is okay and not offensive to do so.  It is not right to use such a serious topic so loosely.  
    Mental illnesses should be taken more seriously.  Many times they are invisible because they affect your brain mostly, but just because it does not look like someone has an illness does not mean they do not have one.  Some people mask their mental illnesses so well it is hard to notice they even have one.  Mental illnesses are hard to cope and it makes it a lot harder to do so when people use them as such loose terms to offend others.  Due to the amount of Americans and people from around the world with mental illnesses it should be taken more seriously throughout.  It is important to bring earnest attention to mental illnesses due to their severity of them and their prevalence around the country.  People should not overlook mental illnesses and should respect those who have them more so not to offend them.
Works Cited
"Mental Disorders." TeenMentalHealthorg. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Mar. 2016.
"Mental Health." The British Medical Journal 2.4571 (1948): 345. NAMI. Web. 18 Mar. 2016.
"Suicide." TeenMentalHealthorg. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Mar. 2016.

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