Jump to content

Which Term Do You Prefer?


  

62 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you prefer the term "mental illness" or "mental disorder"?

    • I prefer "mental illness"
      38
    • I prefer "mental disorder"
      5
    • I use both equally
      19


Recommended Posts

I use both terms equally. Although if I tell someone I am mentally ill, I am afraid of the stigma. I don't tell very many people. Most of my extended family don't even know about my mental illnesses.

I think hiding does no one any good, I don't advertised it but I certainlly don't hide it either, from anyone. I didn't ask for this, didn't go out looking for but I have it, whatever one chooses to call it. We are not monster, misfits nor anything else; we are not evil nor malicious so if others have a problem with it, thats just what it is: their problem. The more you hide something the mysterious it becomes and the more people what to be to pry. Better to deal with it on your terms and not anyone elses.

Be strong my friend.

vega57

Thanks for your insight. You seem to have a good grip on your mental illness or whatever it's called. Do you have any insight on why I feel such shame about my depression and anxiety. I recently had to fill out a medical form listing all my current medication and I am literally embarrassed to write "Cymbalta". I actually hope that who-ever reads the form doesn't know it's an "anti depressant" although I know that's highly unlikely. I have similar feelings with other problems like recent prostate surgery, I didn't tell many people about that either. I definitely don't want friends and family to think I am crazy. As for my avatar name, I guess I felt that way when I signed up.

I know how you feel, CrazyGuy. I work in a very small town and am a pastor-in-training. I cringe whenever I have to have my Zoloft prescription renewed because the pharmacists all know who I am.

you dont have to call it mental illness if the term bothers you aqua just say you have depression, etc. if people want to know more and your are comfortable with it than tell more. i think some people want to know mostly because they are afraid that they may get "it" too, i really do think this, some do want redicule and some are really interested for other reasons. when i tell others they response is mostly positve and if its not than or well, its their problem not mine, i just have to continue working on it and educating those who want to know. crazyguy from what i have learned and expereinced dealing with it for so long i truely think that the feeling of shame comes not directly from us but what society has impressed upon us, it other words many think its a weakness of the mind, character or soul, they dont see it as a genuine illness so they pass those feelings on to us. when all is said and done i also think its about fear: are we truely crazy, are we going to harm them or their family or go just plain bazerk and those are genuine concern to them again because they are ignorant of mental illness thats why i believe in educating others but just talking it about it in plain, everday language; remember when aides first came out, people were totally afraid but now its accepted way, way more, still carries a slight stigma but not like at first. if you indicate that you are ashamed of something that you didn't ask for that others will respond in like manner, like i always say, i didn't ask for this, didn't go out looking for it but i have this condition and i have to deal with it the best i can. one other comment, when people see those poor souls who are maybe homeless all dishevled and talking to themselves or what the case may be they associate it with everyone who has a mental illness not understanding that most who do can live with it very well if and only if they take care of themselves with meds, etc. so please try to get over the shame of having a mental illness and please be tolerant of others' ignorance, you will have a much better life. Lord bless, Rev. Frank

Vega57. Thanks for the excellent post. No, I didn't ask for this and I am going to deal with it the best I can. I'll try not to think of myself as weak or ashamed of being depressed. Unfortunately that is how I felt about mental health before I was diagnosed with depression and it's hard to change bad habits! It's easier to be compassionate when you know what it feels like. I almost feel like the one pharmacist (young lady about my daughters age) knows more about depression than the rest because she will freely ask me how I am feeling and is genuinely caring. I'm willing to bet she has had depression experience with close family or maybe even herself.

I am an introvert wintergrace so I definitely know how your feel.

Lisa15, when you are getting your prescription if you have a private moment you should mention to your pharmacist how you feel. Tell her that you feel like a new person or something like that. I recently had surgery and the surgeon was quizzing me on why I was taking cymbalta. I told him for depression. I was on the table at the time and slightly drugged and irrational. Finally I said "I don't know how to explain it except I feel like a new person". The nurse replied "maybe they should start putting it in the water". I knew right then she understood. I have thought that many times.... That was the end of the conversation. There are more people in need of medication that are receiving it. Hope this makes sense... I have to run. Take Care my friends! God Bless :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use both terms equally. Although if I tell someone I am mentally ill, I am afraid of the stigma. I don't tell very many people. Most of my extended family don't even know about my mental illnesses.

I think hiding does no one any good, I don't advertised it but I certainlly don't hide it either, from anyone. I didn't ask for this, didn't go out looking for but I have it, whatever one chooses to call it. We are not monster, misfits nor anything else; we are not evil nor malicious so if others have a problem with it, thats just what it is: their problem. The more you hide something the mysterious it becomes and the more people what to be to pry. Better to deal with it on your terms and not anyone elses.

Be strong my friend.

vega57

Thanks for your insight. You seem to have a good grip on your mental illness or whatever it's called. Do you have any insight on why I feel such shame about my depression and anxiety. I recently had to fill out a medical form listing all my current medication and I am literally embarrassed to write "Cymbalta". I actually hope that who-ever reads the form doesn't know it's an "anti depressant" although I know that's highly unlikely. I have similar feelings with other problems like recent prostate surgery, I didn't tell many people about that either. I definitely don't want friends and family to think I am crazy. As for my avatar name, I guess I felt that way when I signed up.

I know how you feel, CrazyGuy. I work in a very small town and am a pastor-in-training. I cringe whenever I have to have my Zoloft prescription renewed because the pharmacists all know who I am.

you dont have to call it mental illness if the term bothers you aqua just say you have depression, etc. if people want to know more and your are comfortable with it than tell more. i think some people want to know mostly because they are afraid that they may get "it" too, i really do think this, some do want redicule and some are really interested for other reasons. when i tell others they response is mostly positve and if its not than or well, its their problem not mine, i just have to continue working on it and educating those who want to know. crazyguy from what i have learned and expereinced dealing with it for so long i truely think that the feeling of shame comes not directly from us but what society has impressed upon us, it other words many think its a weakness of the mind, character or soul, they dont see it as a genuine illness so they pass those feelings on to us. when all is said and done i also think its about fear: are we truely crazy, are we going to harm them or their family or go just plain bazerk and those are genuine concern to them again because they are ignorant of mental illness thats why i believe in educating others but just talking it about it in plain, everday language; remember when aides first came out, people were totally afraid but now its accepted way, way more, still carries a slight stigma but not like at first. if you indicate that you are ashamed of something that you didn't ask for that others will respond in like manner, like i always say, i didn't ask for this, didn't go out looking for it but i have this condition and i have to deal with it the best i can. one other comment, when people see those poor souls who are maybe homeless all dishevled and talking to themselves or what the case may be they associate it with everyone who has a mental illness not understanding that most who do can live with it very well if and only if they take care of themselves with meds, etc. so please try to get over the shame of having a mental illness and please be tolerant of others' ignorance, you will have a much better life. Lord bless, Rev. Frank

Vega57. Thanks for the excellent post. No, I didn't ask for this and I am going to deal with it the best I can. I'll try not to think of myself as weak or ashamed of being depressed. Unfortunately that is how I felt about mental health before I was diagnosed with depression and it's hard to change bad habits! It's easier to be compassionate when you know what it feels like. I almost feel like the one pharmacist (young lady about my daughters age) knows more about depression than the rest because she will freely ask me how I am feeling and is genuinely caring. I'm willing to bet she has had depression experience with close family or maybe even herself.

I am an introvert wintergrace so I definitely know how your feel.

Lisa15, when you are getting your prescription if you have a private moment you should mention to your pharmacist how you feel. Tell her that you feel like a new person or something like that. I recently had surgery and the surgeon was quizzing me on why I was taking cymbalta. I told him for depression. I was on the table at the time and slightly drugged and irrational. Finally I said "I don't know how to explain it except I feel like a new person". The nurse replied "maybe they should start putting it in the water". I knew right then she understood. I have thought that many times.... That was the end of the conversation. There are more people in need of medication that are receiving it. Hope this makes sense... I have to run. Take Care my friends! God Bless :)

amen.period.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I voted that I use them both equally, since (in all honesty) I don't really use either! My family (parents, husband, sister) know about my depression & anxiety, and as far as anyone else, it's on a need-to-know basis. I may mention that I have anxiety - which I think people notice, especially those who have witnessed me attempting to decompress at the onset of a panic attack, but as far as the depression goes, I only tell people if it's relative to the situation. (Such as if it were to affect my job performance, etc.)

It's not necessarily that I'm ashamed...though I'll admit it's not something I want to go around telling people...but more that I feel it's irrelevant information and only people who are close to me (and my doctor) need to know. I guess it helps me feel a little more in control of the situation, to know that people aren't using my mental illness to color their opinions of me. Which, in turn, helps me manage my social anxiety.

I hope that makes sense...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't talk to anyone except my closest friends about my issues, and when I do, I use any term. If I had to explain it to someone else, I'd probably prefer illness, as people can relate to being ill. Disorder rather sounds like something incurable or even dangerous to someone who never experienced it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly, it really depends.. if I am talking about with a friend about my age and who already knows - usually I refer to it as my demon (I've called it that for years so they have gotten used to it)

HOWEVER, if I am in a professional setting such as something for work, I use illness.. i think (it's been a while since anything has come up with it at work)

But really, all I prefer to do is shove it under a rug and pretend it isn't there

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I use both terms equally but I do feel like there is a difference in meaning. I feel like an "illness" is better to describe depression and illnesses like it but "disorder" more accurately describes the tougher line of illnesses like schizophrenia. This is just my opinion and not based on any quick google search. lol. I really hope that it doesn't offend anyone!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

personally I hate anything with "mental" as part of it. I have stong feelings about this terminology due to my mum's "illness" and am only now learning to accept that her problems (she was diagnosed as paranoid schizofrenic and I think also had a leaning disability as was childlike for all the time that I knew her (she died 11 years ago) were so vastly different from my own depression.

Maybe I am still in denial but I would rather just refer to "having depression", even though this also makes me cringe inwardly. I need to learn to accept an awful lot still, and not to feel ashamed.

I hope I have not offended anyone with my comments as that is not intended in any way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't use either of them but if I had to choose I would prefer illness.. If I talk about it I just call them my issues our problems. I find it still very hard to call myself ill, it's just shamefull to me really. I feel issues our problems sound more normal since everyone has those, I don't know.. It just feel more comfortable to refer as it like that to me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think disorder sounded better as it sounded like something in your life is out of order instead of being ill. But mental disorder sounds more like personality disorders like OCD, anxiety, etc to me. Whereas mental illness makes one think of depression, etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Just curious. I've read in a couple articles saying that "mental disorder" is supposedly the more favored/more politically correct term. I don't know from what source the claims originate.

Anyway, I think I actually prefer the term "mental illness." Like, if I say I have a "disorder" it makes it sound like there's something wrong with me that can't be fixed. But having an "illness" seems less...daunting, like it's actually treatable.

Just a matter of semantics, I guess. But I'd like to know what the rest of you think.

Agreed. I actually have never talked about these things to anyone that is not a doctor. I've played out many hypothetical situations in my head so I know what to say in case I ever do so, and I think I've always defaulted to using "mental illness."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

I say illness, out of habit, rather than disorder. But I really don't like either of those terms. Both are preferable to "behavioral health," which I dislike strongly because that makes me sound like a child acting up. Rather than "mental," I prefer "psychiatric." So I would say I have a psychiatric illness.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Illness, because it brings with it a sick quality, a health quality, while disorder makes it sound like it's completely mental and therefore something the person can change if they just put their mind to it.

I don't like 'condition' at all. It's too vague and if I were to use the term 'mental condition' I'd be lumping in people who are mentally challenged (eg: someone with down syndrome) as well.

I really don't think it matters much. It seems that anyone who's not personally affected (either themselves or someone they care about) by a mental illness doesn't really understand what they are anyways, and any term I've used to describe it doesn't help the understanding whatsoever.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with those who have said neither. I think "mental (anything)" already has people assuming and judging all over the place! That other thread on here which talks about physical illnesses being far more acceptable than mental ones is pretty correct. I think a lot of people assume as soon as they hear that someone has any sort of mental "problem" they are somehow less worthy of trust and consideration. It's rediculous and I abhor this attitude, but it often seems to be the case.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...