The idea for the name of this website came to me 5 years ago as the frustrated response I wished I could give -- "Oh, just MAKE yourself uncomfortable" -- to the usually unspoken but still obvious discomfort and even blatant stigma that many still share about mental health conditions, as if they were some sort of social leprosy instead of a common and longstanding aspect of human emotional existence that nearly 50 percent of Americans will experience in their lifetimes.
Awareness takes off the blinders and does so much to reduce the stigma, because much of the discomfort stems from fear, and many of us are less than comfortable with discussing emotions, including our own. I was unaware of and/or in denial of my own alphabet soup of neurological and psychological conditions for years: ADHD, OCD, PTSD, depression and anxiety. And even when I was aware I was not doing well, I was much more afraid of anyone "finding out" than of the risks of not getting help. I'm only anonymous here now because of a stalker; I resolve to reject the socially induced shame of struggling with mental health, and I hope you will, too.
It's well past time to trade the stigma for more compassion for everyone suffering from mental health conditions and, as a broader goal, more compassion for the painful life situations that factor into mental health: chronic illness, abuse, fractured families, just being different. Life is so much less difficult when we reach out and support each other.
Help fight stigma! Check out the link in Additional Resources for ideas.