There was recently a discussion which touched on mental health stigma, i was asked to hold off posting this for 2 weeks and to post it in a new thread to alow everything to cool down so here it is. However i cant help but bring up some of that discussion in order to show the very stigma this thread is about. Firstly an observation, all chronic diseases are compared to either cancer or CVD in health litirture in terms of there morbidity, mortality and quality of life. On this specifically why is she so offended? Acording to the ABS the leading causes of death in 2009 were: 1 Ischaemic heart diseases 2 Strokes 3 Dementia and Alzheimer disease 4 Trachea and lung cancer 5 Chronic lower respiratory diseases 6 Diabetes 7 Colon and rectum cancer 8 Blood and lymph cancer 9 Diseases of the kidney and urinary system 10 Heart failure 11 Prostate cancer 12 Breast cancer 13Pancreatic cancer 14Suicide http://abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Products/B6940E9BF2695EE1CA25788400127B0A?opendocument Ie Suicide ranks only 2 behind breast cancer in all deaths However these results are inacuate (by there own admission 80-83. They dont even record deaths as suicde for under 15s because its so sensitive for coroners and familes and the statistics are likly to be higher in other groups Compare this meadian age to that for cancer The link between CVD and Mental illness is also strong I leave it to you to read about the 3 fold increase in mortality for people with depression following CVD and the other links explored in the artical The following artical containes some interesting statistics on Depression A 15% mortality rate by suicide alone ignoring the CVD This is higher up the list than in Australia and its not suprising concidering the avilability of guns (Just to show my above point) The third leading cause of death, acidents, homicide and then suicide. As far as disease burden is concerned So we have delt with the Mortality rates which show clearly that far from being "a bit down" or even equivilant to a broken arm or relitivily minor injury depression and other mental illness are serious, potentually FATAL conditions which are well justified being treated as seriously as cancer. It has a much lower median age for fatilities than does cancer. In the case of quality of life This artical even found that the quality of life of children was effected by there mothers depression. But what really is depression? Is it feeling a bit sad? is it feeling down after being diognosed with an illness? There are depressed people who are so depressed they are catatonic, others who have alzimhers symptoms but rather than being dementia related its caused by the depression. Scizophrenia may well be the most "impressive" mental illness and im sure her parents arnt exagurating in saying they are trying to fight to be herd over the voices but because depression isnt as impressive doesnt make it any less debilitating. Try fighting that voice in your head the whole time saying "you a worthless, why do you bother doing anything you are just going to fail, its a waste of time, you just hurt everyone you care about, they would be better off if you were dead, the whole world would be better without you, at least then x could find someone who makes her happy, you will make a crap father, why dont you just step in front of a car, it will look like an acident, everyone will be better off, why dont you do it, stab yourself with that knife and everyone will be betetr off ect ect" in your head day in day out for 10 years. Constantly you are swiming against this trying to make YOURSELF herd. Some days i have sat for hours with a knife held between my ribs wondering how much it would hurt, or on my wrists, wondering if i had the corage to do it, the "voice" (i put that in quote marks to distinguish it from a halucination) abusing me for not even having the guts to do that properly. So now we move onto stigma So how did that other thread answer chimpkin question? Well quite easerly, bells's out rage because i said i would rather have cancer than depression which i have lived with for at least 10 years now, going in and out of remission but never gone for good shows exactly the attitude this: refers to. At this point i want to move over to a remark bells made which is getting under my skin, i never said that "if i wanted to do it properly i would use differnt pills". I DID want to die, i tried my best TO die, i even scraped up the pills i vomited back up and swollowed them again SO i would die. I didnt know what i was doing so i picked the wrong pills, i used what were a quite mild seditive when the SSRIs themselves would have worked well. I told this to show how hard it really is to kill yourself. As far as jumping in front of a train, fear of pain is one of the most common reasons for suicidle pts "chosing" the paticular methods they do. I tried to cut my wrists but it hurt to much. If i had a gun i would have used that but i didnt have access. Jumping in front of a train (in my mind) would cause me alot of pain and also traumitise the train driver. And yet you mock me for that, you remind me of bob katter mocking gay marriage. Anyway enough of that, back onto the stigma That artical is correct, i made the mestake when i was first diognosed of being honest with my boss as to why i needed time off. He fired me not long after that because I "might go mental in the kitchen". The disease itself makes me feel paranoid and self concious and when its actually reflected back its even worse. I avioded seeing my shrink for 6 months because i was afraid of what she would think if i told her i had relapsed. My family and friends? forget it. If your lucky you might get sympathy\empathy for the imidiate inital illness, but after that the comments become "why arnt you better?" "Pull yourself together" ect. There is one other thing which i havent touched on with regard to stigma yet and thats the attitude displayed by PsychoTropicPuppy's posts, ie compleate denial. Scientology is the most extreem example of this sadly.