Senior Psychology major discusses he stigma of mental health at SJU.
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Hi, I’m a senior at Saint Joseph’s University. I am a psych major, with an art minor.
I think that mental health could, like range from like, being stressed out to like, situational. Like, I think that it’s just like a person’s wellbeing, rather than needing to be defined specifically.
I think around 8th grade, um, I started to realize that I was very self conscious. I was experiencing life a lot differently than my friends. But then when I got to high school, I had a lot of different events that triggered, uh, not just anxiety, then I started to become depressed. And, um, I still wasn’t dealing with situations the way that someone without mental health would.
But then when I got to college it kinda all changed, and my symptoms became less anxiety and more so, um, I just was sad. And I had more bad days than good days. My friends were like, “oh we heard about CAPS” and I was like, “whats CAPS?” Like, I’ve never heard of CAPS. That’s not something I’ve ever been introduced to, and like I was never given information on. A few girls who I knew that have went to CAPS, I asked them questions and everything was negative.
I think there was one person who actually had a good experience, but it was with one specific therapist that was there. Which, I mean I can’t say much because I have never been to CAPS, but everything that I was hearing from people made me not wanna go to class, like, that’s the reason I didn’t.
A lot of people say, you meet someone, you talk to them for the first time, and then you’re with someone else. I don’t think that that’s healthy for a person. I think… they, whoever, sees you when you’re good, and when you’re bad so, being able to recognize when the person is not doing well, just when they are there in front of you is very important.
As a whole school, like, I don’t think that it’s out there. I don’t think they’re raising awareness. I don’t think that they’re making people realize that it’s okay not to be okay. And, that’s really sad because you’re in college. It’s supposed to be the best four years of your life. You’re supposed to be happy, you’re supposed to be having a good time in college. I think if we had more awareness, of the fact that it’s okay to have mental illness, and it’s okay to be sad, and it’s okay to be stressed, that doesn’t make you any less of a person than anybody else is. But I don’t think that people feel that way, because the school doesn’t make them feel that way.