Sunday, May 4, 2014

Why Put Labels On People?

"Hey, did you know that bloke was afraid of mice? Right wimp. Whoever heard of a grown man being afraid of mice?"

The fact that you climb the wall when a large spider appears on the scene, isn't mentioned.

Now, there's the rude labelling, labelling that can hurt and insult people, but there's the other kind of labelling. You go to your doctor and he tells you that you suffer from depression. You're a depressive. This can be helpful to people who weren't sure what the heck was wrong with them.

The problem is that if we don't visit the doctor; if we simply 'tough it out,' then a loss of control over our lives can be the result. I mention depression, because it's so infernally prevalent. So very many people suffer from it, but at some time down the line, they've mentioned it to one of their relatives and been told;

"Oh, don't be such a drip. We all feel depressed at some time."

Oh, I see. We all feel clinically depressed, do we? Big strong men have no trouble getting over clinical depression, do they? Oh no. Clinical depression is depression, only the doctor gives you pills to clear it up.


Why put labels on people at all?

"What's wrong with your husband?"

"He has clinical depression," so this woman trots home to her husband and tells him that poor old Bert's mad!

The Human Condition is what these various ailments used to be called. They were accepted as part of life, most especially in the last century. They'd use the motor car analogy.

"Oh, you're just a bit run down." Yeah, like a car battery.

"It's his nerves, poor man."

Thank God more enlightened thinking has started to take over. A good psychotherapist can gently make the condition seem more normal.

Let's look at grief. Some poor woman has just lost her mother, whom she idolized. She simply can't stop crying. The good therapist will quietly point out that she's suffered a terrible loss, and what she's experiencing is perfectly normal. Hellish though it is at the moment, the grief will pass.

Gradually, gradually, day by day, the light will shine through again. You'll cling to it and start to find little moments of happiness, where all was darkness before.

Personally, I think that this thoughtless labelling of people who suffer through no fault of their own, is quite despicable. Supposing a lady sees someone shot in front of her. What do you think she'll do? Go about her merry way, rejoicing? Of course she won't. She's been very badly traumatized. She'll probably wake up in the middle of the night and in her mind, hear a gunshot.

But this is the beauty of our make-up. Slowly, slowly, these hellish thoughts will leave us. So before you label someone out of your own ignorance,


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