I have been called a lot of things over the years. Some didn’t bother me, actually, most didn’t bother me. But last night, someone called me the C-word: “Crazy”, and it really made me upset.
Now, I know I am crazy…or at least mentally ill, but it is one thing for me to call myself that. It is completely different for someone else to say it, not even to me, but about me. I know I am probably being overly sensitive, but it really did bother me. I’ve had family and friends call me crazy to my face in a way that meant I was being really silly or funny or weird, and that is okay, because it is not said in a derogatory way. However, when someone says it about you, you do not know the intention it was said with…maybe they meant it the same way my family and friends do, but what if it wasn’t?
Now I feel like I have to walk on egg-shells around this person and their family, because their children have already been warned that, “Miss Abby is crazy.” And, again, maybe it was meant like, “She has blue hair…she is crazy!’ But, how do I know?
It brings to mind the same feelings I get when someone flippantly uses some mental illness to explain someone’s moodiness or some other negative side of them, such as, “Jeff totally lost his temper over nothing…He must be bipolar.” Really? Really? If you knew what I with my illness or bipolar people with theirs really went through, you would know how completely insensitive and ignorant you are being. That is what I would like to say, but instead I keep my mouth shut and hope the person saying that doesn’t realize I, too, am mentally ill.
There has been so much work done to erase the stigma of mental illness, but I guess we still have a long way to go when people are still using the “C-Word” in a negative way.
Your Sad Lunatic Friend