Opinion

Latest Trend: Glamorizing Mental Health Issues

ROSALINE QI
STAFF WRITER

There’s a constant dull, droning pain coming from an ‘inexplicable place within you’ and a torrent of desolation that threatens to rid of any hope that has the audacity to remain. Sometimes, you feel like happiness is just a luxury. Just a faraway, elusive memory that resurfaces when the taunting past is showing off what once was yours. You take a sip of your rich blend coffee from a chipped mug and lean against the railing of your balcony- the faraway look in your eyes betraying your unbearable heartache.

You’re ‘beautifully morose’, you’re mysterious, you’re brooding, you’re endlessly fascinating…

….Give me a break.

Today, some people think depression is just a black and white polaroid picture paired with the perfect, pretentiously morbid quote. Teens like you and I log in to social media sites, and are instantly bombarded with the most fantastical, romantic representations of the illness. They tell you that mental disorders make you interesting—that the looming dark clouds of depression are no more than a trendy accessory. But that could not be more wrong.

Clinical depression is not glamorous.

It’s not glamorous in that food is tasteless, music has no effect on you, and the sky is un-poetically gray. All the mistakes you’ve made—every potential failure from the previous entirety of your existence comes and lingers and beleaguers you, every waking moment: the time you lied to your mother and got caught, the time you got turned down by your crush, the time your goldfish died because of your irresponsibility…

These are the true symptoms of clinical depression. A reality that is overpowered by the pandemonium of misinformed online teenage voices trying to showcase their suffering.

An increasingly dangerous occurrence is that some of the members of this “glamorous depression” club convince themselves into a trance-like state of believing that they are truly depressed. They look within themselves to find abnormalities, and so they discover them. They become a victim of their own thoughts and are constantly triggered by the community of people around them who feel the same way. In other words, some people who attempt to wade through the social media realm of “hashtag-depression” end up getting dragged up into the sea by the undertow. And finally, what first started out as a relatable, self-deprecating tweet morphs into something of much
greater seriousness.

Another threat that this glamorized depression poses is the hindrance to teens and other people who are in fact, clinically depressed and seeking for help and discussion online. They reach out, only to find a crowd of misinformed people who are utterly oblivious to the dangers, intricacies and dynamics of true
mental illnesses.

By no means am I trying to invalidate or denounce any possible depressive feelings, panic attacks or even (but hopefully not) suicidal thoughts some of you may be having. If you ever even slightly question your mental health or stability, it is imperative that you talk to an adult, seek professional help, or at least become educated on the subject from a reputable source.

What I am saying is that mental illnesses are a part of a lot (one in six, in fact, according to The Atlantic) of people’s realities. The glamorizing and popularizing of mental disorders by those who are aren’t suffering from them is just as absurd as non-disabled people showing off their newly bedazzled,
diamond-encrusted wheelchairs.

By the aid of technological advancement, the world has shrunk enough to fit into the screens of our smartphones. However, with such an easily accessible community of living breathing humans, it is our duty to behave sensibly and consciously towards each other.Depression isn’t glamorous, but it is still very much real. And so I say it is time that we make that distinction and begin to see it in its reality.

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   I have decided to be the assistant coach for the JV girls basketball team since I want to stay involved as much as I can, but I will definitely miss playing on the court. Hopefully, Pinewood overrules this rule in the near future so other passionate seniors won’t be barred from playing their favorite sport in their last year as a high school student.

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