A Valueless Label!
Stigma, stain, dishonour, label, mark, shame….It has one job – it makes us hide, avoid, run away from situations, and people even more feel suffocated and voiceless. This emotional pain creates a hole in our heart, which just gets bigger with time.
The difference in attitudes towards mental illness, gender choices, diversity and ethnic issues, and special learning methods create imbalances, generates ridges and gaps in our community and within ourselves, our hopes, wishes, choices, dreams and visions. We are free, but Not!
This topic is close to my heart, as it happened in my own family back in India. My niece has asperger, and my brothers only worry was ”let’s not put her in a special educational school, she will be labelled and no one will marry her”. Finally, my niece got the help she needed, after me twisting my brother’s arm and making him aware of the repercussions of his former decision.
Today, he is so proud of her, as she is in one of the top universities in India, and is on her way to be a nutritionist and head of the student council. One step at a time, small manageable targets, perseverance and determination have all helped her move on against all odds. She has gained and understood the meaning of Resilience!
The sooner we adopt a progressive mindset, flexible thought process, the sooner we will show empathy towards each other. This is critical in harvesting healthy relationships, which leads to a dynamic, compassionate, supportive and advancing community.
So, the question that pops into my mind is ‘‘Despite being literate, why do we judge people when they want to step out of their current state so they can move forward, live with confidence and self pride?
Below are a few tips to educate ourselves or to help others deal with stigma…
- Don’t buy into stigma
- Join support groups
- Listen without giving opinions
- Acceptance is the key
- Empowerment v/s Label
- Don’t get influenced by media
- Use correct positive language
- Get treatment if required.
- Educated v/s Academically Illiterate
- Stand up for who you are – speak out
- Be a compassionate and emphatic
- Nobody can define you
- Don’t measure your or others worth with outcomes
- Put yourself in their shoes
Before I leave you for now, I ask you to ponder over what the words ”Being Human” mean to you.
Love, Faith, Hope
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