How do you describe a sunset to a person that has been blind from birth?


How do you sign, to a deaf person, what a child’s laugh, sounds like?


How can you explain the depth of anxiety someone with OCD feels, when a routine is disrupted?


How can you feel how deep depression can become, when you have only had a taste of it?




Then try to explain the emotional sensitivity someone with Borderline Personality Disorder feels?


Or the frustration someone suffering with Bipolar feels when they go from mania… to deep depression.


How more than one self, more than one identity can live… in one mind.


How someone with an eating disorder can not just sit, and eat a meal like you enjoy.


Try to understand how someone feels, when you see scars on their arms… and look into their eyes.


What someone feels, when your comment of “they must be off their meds…” is heard.


or buck up


just do it


your brother is not like that…


Can you understand how that hurts?


You can’t, can you?


can you?


No, don’t nod and say yes and then lapse or become tired of trying to understand… because it is a lot of work.


Don’t try for a while and then fade away, because that hurts even more.

You wonder why someone suffering with mental health issues, does not like to talk about what they deal with, how they feel, what it feels like…

This too is stigma.


When you look up the word stigma in thesaurus, you find:










It is no wonder that it exists, stigma. Why someone with mental health issues, does not wish to talk about it. Look at those words. Just the word stigma.. has stigma.

How can we move past all of this? This stigma?

We can’t understand, we can’t talk about it.

can we?


 I am not going to go into the numbers, how one in five suffers with mental health, I am not going to talk about the high suicide rates, I am going to talk about the comments that follow these things…. the “I didn’t know”


It is because, we didn’t know, that we didn’t help

It is because we can’t understand, that we didn’t know

it is because of that word



it is because of that word, that many do not seek help

it is because of that word, that help is often not had

because, we don’t talk about it

funding for help, is minimal


Because it is not an issue

because… we don’t talk about it


Open your eyes

you know someone that is suffering


you do


You can help, you can help so much.

You may have to try a tiny bit harder

You may have to make allowances

You may have to watch, how the little things you say, are not so little


You may have to be more sensitive.

You may have to build up trust, so talking, explaining, becomes easier.

You may have to reach down deep, to understand.



you can’t do it, can you…


can you?


We have to talk, understand

It will be hard, to understand

will it be too hard?  

will you give up?

try for a day, and then stop?



When you watch the ambulance drive away

with lights flashing

sirens screaming

with a loved one… in the back 


Will you try then?


 “I didn’t know”



partners, those two.



but this too, is just a page of words

maybe some will sink in though

maybe it will start a conversation


maybe you can print it out, let someone read it

and then talk.



We have to start somewhere

to understand


we can can’t we?


Can you?




About sensuousamberville

I am a Practitioner, teacher and student. I think we should always be students, we should keep our minds open, to continue to learn. :-) Now a mother of two little ones.

12 responses »

  1. “Just the word stigma has stigma”… so very true and it is difficult to move past

  2. It is truly tragic that there is not enough funding devoted to mental health. Well, rather, that there is so much funding overdirected to medication (given Big Pharma’s stranglehold on the false notion that mental illnesses are primarily biologically-caused “brain disorders”), and not enough devoted to individual or group psychotherapy, job training, and other social support approaches. The cost to the economy from mental illness is massive and the misallocation of resources and lack of provision of resources to treat the mentally ill is a monumental error by our government (speaking of the USA here). To give just one example of misallocation, if the USA would stop wasting half of the 700 billion dollars a year it does on the military, it could help many more people who truly need help, rather than invading Middle Eastern countries that will soon return to the state of anarchy they were previously in as soon as the United States leaves.

    • Considering that mental health will be an issue for over 20 percent of the population, one would think it would be more of an issue, but because it is not discussed, open.. funding is shuffled off, it seems in all countries.

      Maybe one day, soon would be nice though.

  3. I nod, but I nod from experience. It’s a case of if you haven’t walked in their shoes. So sad when others can or will not try to understand. Hugs

  4. Well
    Love Ziggy


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