As Society Degrades Some Mental Illnesses Now “Normal”
While society may be quick to apply the term “mental illness” to a broad spectrum of behaviors, it is slow to acknowledge the idea that sanity itself is an elusive entity, difficult if not impossible to define, and largely reliant on context.
What do we mean by this? Well, let's pick a simple example. If you're a half-eaten jelly doughnut in Akron Ohio, you are also a half-eaten jelly doughnut in Chagrin Falls, Calcutta, Medicine Hat, and St. Petersburg. In other words, location has no impact on how you are perceived, valued, or for that matter, consumed.
The same cannot be said for behavior designated as inappropriate, which is to say, demonstrating some form of mental illness. Behavior considered the height of fashion in Cheboygan, (assuming there is fashion in Cheboygan) might be considered bizarre, disturbing, and unwholesome in Chad, Bongo Bongo, and Ulm.
This presents significant challenges to healthcare professionals including psychiatrists, bartenders, and psychics. However, these challenges cannot hold a dimly lit candle to recent developments observed by representatives of the American Association for the Advancement of American Associations (AAAAA).
At a recent press conference, AAAAA spokesman Quentin Auchtermuchty shocked attendees with this conclusion taken from the executive summary of his recent study enigmatically entitled, “Our Recent Study.”
“The contextual relativism of sanity, qua sanity, poses difficulties for today's care giver, further complicated by global erosion of character, mores, manners, and social conventions which, when taken collectively, might be referred to as “politesse.” Take narcissism as an example. Long held in contempt by nice people everywhere, narcissism has moved front and center into mainstream culture as anyone who watched the Oscars can attest.
“In recent decades, behavioral disorders known as attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) and messed-up disorder (MUD) have emerged to describe an entire suite of behaviors including, but not limited to, short attention span, irritability, inability to focus, rudeness, insensitivity, intolerance, selfishness, and more.
“Only recently classified as illnesses, these disorders are now relatively . . . squirrel. Non-stop communication has reduced us to a short attention span society where every single form of digital chatter has been dumbed down to nuggets of 3-seconds or . . . so what? Got a problem with that?
“Bipolar disorder has been cited as the cause of so much mischief by prominent figures that it’s been downgraded from illness to a way of being colorful.
“Shifts in cultural standards may mean a decrease in sales for pharmaceutical companies, and fewer billable hours for healthcare workers, but, on the positive side, they do acknowledge the link between mental illnesses and a society that is increasingly whackadoomian.
“To recall the time honored axiom,” Auchtermuchty smirked knowingly, “an outgoing tide strands all boats.”
McHarg, A. (2014, March 4). As Society Degrades Some Mental Illnesses Now “Normal”, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, October 17 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/funnyinthehead/2014/03/society-degrades-mental-illnesses-normal