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The stigma surrounding mental illness is very powerful and very real for those diagnosed and coping with a mental health condition. It really hit home for me this week when I read Cristina Fender's (Bipolar Vida blog author) post on the shame she experienced when she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.

Because of the misconceptions, fears and personal prejudices people have about mental illness, stigma is still alive and well. And for those reasons, many with a mental health condition don't seek treatment, deny they have a problem, face rejection by family and friends, and then there's workplace discrimination.

Steps to Reduce the Effects of Stigma Surrounding Mental Illness

  • Don't Equate Yourself with the Illness: You are not the illness. Instead of thinking "I'm bipolar," try "I have bipolar disorder." Accept that you are worthwhile with much potential.
  • Come to Terms with the Illness: Don't let others' ignorance or judgements make you feel ashamed, embarrassed, or create self-doubt. Counseling can help with that.
  • Get Support: Deciding who to tell and how much to share can be difficult. However, sharing with someone you trust can bring compassion, acceptance and support.
  • Become Educated About the Illness: And then educate and tell others in settings you are most comfortable.


Share Your Mental Health Experiences

Share your experiences with stigma of mental illness or any mental health subject, or respond to other people's audio posts, by calling our toll-free number (1-888-883-8045).

You can listen to what other people are saying by clicking on the gray title bars inside the widgets located on the "Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences" homepage, the HealthyPlace homepage, and the HealthyPlace Support Network homepage.

If you have any questions, write us at: info AT


"Living with Bipolar Disorder" On HealthyPlace TV

The stigma surrounding mental illness is a horrible thing. Bipolar Vida blogger, Cristina Fender, discusses that, plus bipolar medications and trying to be positive when you can hardly get out of bed on this week's HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show.

You can watch the interview on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show website.

Still to Come in February on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show

  • ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy) Saved My Life
  • Parenting a Child with Behavior Problems w/ Dr. Steven Richfield (The Parent Coach)

If you would like to be a guest on the show or share your personal story in writing or via video, please write us at: producer AT

Previous HealthyPlace TV archived shows, click the "on-demand" button on the player.

From HealthyPlace Mental Health Blogs

Feel free to share your thoughts and comments at the bottom of any blog post.

Latest Mental Health News

These stories and more are featured on our mental health news page:

  • Empathy’s Natural, but Nurturing It Helps
  • You're Fired! How to Handle Rejection
  • A New Program Treats Childhood Depression and Tames Out-of-Control Teenagers
  • Blood Pressure, Sleep And Mental Health Improve With Flexible Working Arrangements

That's it for now. If you know of anyone who can benefit from this newsletter or the site, I hope you'll pass this onto them. You can also share the newsletter on any social network (like facebook, stumbleupon, or digg) you belong to by clicking the links below. For updates throughout the week, follow HealthyPlace on Twitter or become a fan of HealthyPlace on Facebook.

Thank you,

Community Partner Team - America's Mental Health Channel
"When you're at, you're never alone."

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