I think it really needs to be said in a more formal way why mental illness Tumblr seriously needs to evaluate what they’re doing. Before I get into this, I wanna say that I know this is just a website and I have a choice in what communities I interact with, but when you are living in an abusive environment and you have nobody to look to but your abusers you usually go to social media. I went to Tumblr because it is the most accepting when it comes to mental illness to some extent, because people didn’t immediately judge me or hate me for my symptoms.
Note: sorry for the strange school-esque organization, i just did headings to make it easier to read for people
Anti-recovery and promoting unhealthy mindsets
For the most part, mental illness Tumblr barely promotes recovery or healthy coping mechanisms. Mi Tumblr (mental illness Tumblr) is mostly talking about symptoms in a unhealthy way and are just saying that suffering is a good thing. I completely understand that being mentally ill comes with a ton of negativity within yourself. It is healthy to talk about your problems, it’s good to be open and to reach out to others, but never promoting good vibes or good coping mechanisms in return is not helping. When someone is having any type of episode, they need help, maybe not immediately for some people because they are in too bad of a state to immediately recover from the episode (just listen to what they need), but they should get support and comfort sometime soon. It’s absolutely ideal to recover and/or get in the habit of healthy coping mechanisms. I feel that mi Tumblr isn’t helping us recover or creating a safe environment for nd folk by not normalizing healthy mindsets and healthy coping mechanisms, they are normalizing the suffering and unhealthy ways to deal with your symptoms. Most posts are just talking about our awful experiences and then ending it there. There is literally no support or comfort afterwards. I understand wanting to relate with others when talking about your mental health. It’s great to know that others are going through the same and you’re not alone, but just do not end it there, for your own health. Try to make a support system for each other with this person since they relate with you. Talk about it with people and try to help each other out. One more example I want to bring into light, is when people reblog others personal posts. Personal posts are for venting and it’s not made for others to spread, but people reblog it anyway for the aesthetic and are not taking the op’s feelings seriously.
I want to get this through with a lot of people that recovering or improving in controlling or coping with your symptoms does not make you invalid. It is okay to recover, it does not make you obsolete to the mental illness community.
Memes within the community
I want to speak about the whole meme thing going on about mental illness. I can understand that joking about stuff can help you cope, but making mi this huge meme isn’t good for a lot of people. For nd folk, making these memes within the community makes them feel like it’s okay to suffer, like it’s okay and a laughing matter to be depressed or that “lmao i wanna kill yourself everyday.” People make all of these jokes and then say nothing about help and don’t express care for those who are suffering afterwards, it’s just a joke to them. It just promotes more anti-recovery for people. My boyfriend has had actual problems within the community where he would be feeling down and terrible and say “I feel depressed,” and people would actually laugh at him, because it’s a meme within the community to say “I’m so depressed,” or like i said earlier, “I wanna kill myself everyday.” I’ve had similar experiences where I would say “I want to fucking die,” or that “I hate living,” and I am actually entirely genuine and I feel suicidal as hell and people just laugh. People laugh, because they think it’s just a funny meme that everyone parrots in the mi community. It makes me feel disheartened and I regret being open about it because people just laugh within the community because they think i’m just making a meme. All of our feelings aren’t a joke and every nd person knows that, so don’t create these mi memes that we laugh at when they’re an actual serious matter. I understand venting with making jokes, I really do, but do not post it and make it go viral, just keep it personal if you need a way to say something without all of the heavy feelings carried with it. Saying a joke about your mi to avoid talking about the heavy feelings and just mentioning it in a not serious tone is not the best way to tell someone about your problems though. It should be normalized to talk about the heavy emotions when it comes to your feelings, you shouldn’t repress it with making a meme to mask what you’re really feeling. I can understand being afraid of disclosing something that personal to people and saying a joke instead, to sort of say something but not really be serious. Even though this makes sense, try your best to sit down with someone and really talk about your issues to avoid the awkwardness that the jokes could create and also avoid repressing your feelings. These memes about mi to me are just a way of repressing what we truly feel and I don’t think it’s healthy to do that. It should be communnity-wide to feel safe when talking about the heavy stuff and not ignore your feelings, bottling it all up.
Mi Tumblr makes people feel like they should experience constant negative symptoms to fit in. (”You have to be this negative and upset to be mentally ill”) Having this pressure to be in a perpetuating negative state expressed so often in the community can make us not want to recover because they want to maintain their bad habits to fit in. If you end up recovering or noticing you’re getting better you’ll feel invalid and self conscious about this and want to get back to the unhealthy mindset that Tumblr promotes. I can absolutely vouch for this, absolutely. I have a bunch of mental problems and when I started to date my boyfriend I got a whole lot better about my mental health and I felt I was really starting recovery finally. I looked back at mi Tumblr and I started to get afraid I wasn’t valid as being mentally ill anymore and I started to get back to square 1 because of the lack of talk about recovery in the community. My boyfriend has had same experiences and I also talked to one of my friends about this and she said Tumblr has made her feel mentally worse ever since she joined.
The majority of the mi community are minors and are really young in general, and I feel having all of the above normalized in this community is awful to teach these kids at such a young age. The friend I mentioned in the “Peer pressure” paragraph at the ending when I said “I also talked to one of my friends about this and she said Tumblr has made her feel mentally worse ever since she joined,” she is 14 y.o.
Overall, just learning all of the crap from mi Tumblr is honestly really bad for the minors in the community. For those of you who cannot turn to anything but social media: try to find someone with the same problems as you and create a support system. Try to share coping mechanisms that could help or be there for each other whenever. Make support groups and try to steer away from mi Tumblr, it’s unhealthy as fuck. I could sit and talk about all of the awful coping mechanisms I have seen on this site, but that would be a whole new post. Don’t listen to that stuff, if it involves triggering you or making you upset or lying to yourself in the slightest, just don’t do it. Be safe and treat yourselves right and try to recover together and help each other out. Enough of this perpetuating negativity in the community.
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