Disease & Illness

People Share The Worst Mental Illness ‘Advice’ They’ve Ever Been Given

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 43.8 million adults in the U.S. experience some form of mental illness in any given year. Have you been given any hurtful 'tips' about a mental illness?

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 43.8 million adults in the U.S. experience some form of mental illness in any given year. That’s nearly 20 percent of the population. Yet, as prevalent as this might seem, mental health still carries a social stigma as well as a general lack of understanding.

Hattie Gladwell is a lifestyle reporter for MetroUK who has had her own experience with mental illness and wants to change society’s view on the subject. In observance of Mental Health Month, Gladwell posted a tweet asking others to share the most unhelpful or insensitive comments they have received regarding their mental illness, sharing her own as a jumping off point.

In response, people took to Twitter with the hashtag #ThingsPeopleHaveSaidAboutMyMentalIllness in droves and have continued to do so since Gladwell introduced it on May 6. The results have been overwhelming, astonishing and often heartbreaking.

While they are all worth reading, there are many recurring themes in the unkind comments and underhanded remarks made to people who have everything from depression to eating disorders to anxiety and more.

The tweets we’ve included below display some of the most common types of things said, often by loved ones and even medical or mental health professionals.

1. ‘Just Eating’ Won’t Cure An Eating Disorder

2. Being A Neat Freak Isn’t The Same As Having Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

3. Trying To Scare Someone Out Of Postpartum Depression Is Unwise And Unkind

4. Nobody Chooses Mental Illness

5. Depression Is Much More Than Sadness …

6. And It Can’t Be Overcome Just By Exercising And Being Positive

7. Seeking Help Is Never A Sign Of Weakness

8. Mental Illness Is Real Illness

9. Guilt Isn’t Helpful

10. Mental Illness Is Not A Plea For Attention

Bonus: The Right Thing To Say

If you or someone you love is struggling with mental illness, help is available. Here are some free resources in the U.S.:

1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Treatment Referral Helpline

Call 877‑SAMHSA7 (877‑726‑4727) to receive general mental health information and locate treatment services in your area.

2. Crisis Text Line

Text HOME to 741741 no matter the day or time for any type of crisis. A volunteer crisis counselor will help you.

3. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Call 800-273-8255 anytime to receive free and confidential support, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved one — or chat online here.

Have you heard any insensitive “advice” when it comes to mental illness?