An Autistic Reflection of Societal Views of Mental Health

I haven’t written in a while. I’ve had a lot of thoughts lately, but they’re so disorganized that it’s been difficult for me to express myself coherently. I’ll try, bear with me.

There is a lot of stigma in today’s society about the need to take medication for a mental health issue. As someone who needs to take medication for a mental health issue, this is troubling. Our opinions on this have to change. However, we can’t be tolerant if we don’t know the hows, so allow me to rant from the front lines:

One of the side effects of my medication is that I get surges in the back of my neck that makes my head shake. It’s a little embarrassing because it draws attention to me, and I don’t really like it being pointed out. I don’t want any of my tics or uncontrollable things I do to be pointed out or faced* at. Why do people continue to make assumptions of me, instead of asking me polite questions about what they’re curious about?

Medication is a catch-22. If you don’t take it, you run the risk of acting out, being inappropriate, hurting someone, hurting yourself, etc., and if you do take it, the side effects are a whole other monster to psychologically wrap your head around. You could have physical side effects that affect body processes (like eating too much or too little, which in itself can psychologically imbalance your mental homeostasis, infections, increased risks for diabetes, etc.). The medication also affects your mental well-being (like suicidal thoughts you don’t typically have, paranoia, confusion, etc.). Maybe you take medicines for focus (like I do) that causes you to be even more socially awkward and aggressive, so you have to take something to counteract that (like I do).

But not everyone thinks about that stuff when they’re forming opinions about things they don’t know about. How can they? They don’t know about it. Those types of people can only create an opinion on something with what they know. If they know a lot, their advice is more valued than the one of someone who doesn’t know as much.

I like that idea. That society determines the weight of what you say based on what you know and can do. I’ve always respected that.

I find the knowledge and feeling sharing tendency we all have to be fascinating. Exciting things in and of itself is part of why humans yearn, and that thirst for knowledge can only be quenched when we encounter exciting stuff because then we experience awe.

And the awe is such an exciting feeling. It’s not something that goes away but instead gets more involved the more that you immerse yourself in the feeling. Where I think the idea starts to go off the rails is when people become obsessed with the object that’s making them feel the awe, instead of turning inward. I have found that a healthy relationship with oneself is the only way to appreciate that which makes you feel awe. It’s so much easier on the mind and body when the wonder is not an object, though, but rather another person or an idea.

Not everybody takes medication to contain their crazy. Sometimes people take it to channel their awesome. Sometimes people take it to harness their internal whirlwinds. Sometimes people take it to spread out their meticulousness. It’s very awe-inspiring how people try to conform themselves into fitting into a society that, by definition, both tells them that there’s something wrong with them while also trying to celebrate their individuality. It’s almost like there are different classes and types of people all trying to fit into a box that not really anyone fits into anymore.

Our society needs to mature a little. Maturity reflects itself in internal peace and the spread of wisdom. There’s nothing wrong with medication, just the attitude towards it. There’s nothing wrong with you, it’s everyone else. We’re all special inside as individuals, and we’re all beautiful. Maybe it’s time we throw out the box.

*faced means making faces at me. I don’t always know what faces mean, so I find myself getting mad a lot at that misunderstanding. Or not, because in my experience a great deal of the faces isn’t nice.

Click here to read more about my views of humanity.

Click here to read more about insurance companies and how healthcare really works in America.

3 thoughts on “An Autistic Reflection of Societal Views of Mental Health

  1. Pingback: Autism – arianneswork

  2. Pingback: An Autistic Reflection of Self Acceptance – arianneswork

  3. Pingback: Autism and the Hispanic Community – arianne's work

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