So it’s a Saturday afternoon (I’m still hungover, obvs) and I’m sprawled across the sofa surrounded by a few fave gal pals, a kitten and a glass of water, when the conversation turns to mental unstability, or in our terms ‘being fucked up’.
Ten minutes into said conversation and it became horribly obvious: we couldn’t name one single person who wasn’t in some way fucked up (in our vodka-tinted eyes anyway).
Now, you’ll either be reading this with one of two minds, either you’ve probably always thought of yourself as a little bit screwed up in the head (in which case, give yourself a reassuring pat on the head from me), or, you’ll rather stubbornly, be declaring yourself entirely sane. Both are probably right, because when it comes down to it, where is the line between mentally stable and, err, not mentally stable?
Maybe you tend to drink so much on a Friday night you throw up, black out and lose your dignity. Maybe you’re incapable of holding down a long-term relationship, or maybe the idea of discussing your emotions is about as pleasant as rolling around in a pile of slugs, or maybe you just can’t help but sleep around. Perhaps you have issues with eating and can’t view food in a sensible way, or you act out for attention, and maybe, well, maybe you do none of the above.
We’ve all got issues, in fact you probably can relate to at least one of the situations listed above, and for each behavioural issue i just listed, there’s probably someone that comes straight to the forefront of your mind. But when it comes down to it are these alone enough to be deemed fucked up, or are they just personanilty traits?
We’re defined, from that very second we’re born, by our surroundings and experiences. Whether it be a breakdown in our parents’ marriage, or a certain personality trait we mirror from our parents, every minute of every day we are being defined by everything around us. It’s terrifying.
The difficulty is, at which point is someone deemed mentally unstable enough to need to get help, at what point is their behaviour enough for someone to step in and provoke change? We live in a world where mental illness is deemed crazy, weird and uncool, and so it’s difficult for people to seek help. How many people have made a beeline straight to their GPs office because of a slight cold, or a tiny rash, or an ingrowing toenail? Would the same people visit the GP because they drink a bit too much or cry a few times a week too many, or struggle with social situations sometimes? I highly doubt it.
So in a world where I firmly believe that most people i’ve ever met could do with a good stint of counselling, at what point are we going to admit that it’s ok to talk? Because I may not believe in God or dogs, but I do believe talking things through would make everyone a hundred times happier.