Stop Laughing

The one thing I’ve learned on this journey, is that you don’t laugh at things that you don’t understand. Chances are, the thing that you’re laughing at, should never have been laughed at in the first place. The people affected by the thing that you’re laughing at don’t accept your laughing as an innocent occurrence and take it very personally, whether you meant it or not.

And, whether you meant it or not, it’s mean and it’s cruel. And those who take those words to heart, they might not have the support system they need to be able to laugh off your laughing at their situation.

You laugh at people with mental disabilities. Why? Because it’s funny, because it’s convenient, and because you “didn’t mean it like that.” But you did, and you and I both know it.

You laugh at people like me, the ones who are sometimes so depressed that they can’t get themselves up off the couch to take a shower. Those who are too afraid to leave their home in fear that someone out there will notice their scars, or laugh at them, or trigger something that is very hard to deal with. You laugh, because it’s easy, it’s funny. Oh, and you didn’t mean it like that.

But let me tell you this. You did mean it like this. Yes. Take offense to this. And get mad, because I’m singling you out, because I’m pointing out your flawed image of yourself, and I’m pointing out that  you are a monster. Oh, but you didn’t mean it like that. Right?

No.

Here’s the thing. When  you call someone a retard, you did mean it like that. You meant to line that person up with someone who has a low IQ or a learning disability or someone who is a special needs case. And yes, you did mean it like that. You wanted it to hurt them. No, not the person with the disability, but your friend that you just compared to someone who cannot help what they do and who they are.

When you say things like that, it’s hurtful. To the person who is that way, whether they are “impaired” or whatever the case is, you hurt them. Because they understand the word. They know what you are doing. And to the family that has to take care of the previously mentioned person, you’re making fun of their family. You are intentionally setting out to victimize that family. But, let me guess, you didn’t mean it like that. Your friend was just fooling around and you were just pointing out how retarded they were being, how Autistic they were acting, right?

How is this not offensive? How can you not see that when you say things like this, that you are hurting people? Oh, they don’t understand? Really? Have you ever asked? Have you ever even had a relationship with someone so special that you even dared ask if this would hurt their feelings? Or are you just assuming, because it’s easier, because it’s funny and because you didn’t mean it like that? It’s really funny isn’t it? To bully others based on them not understanding what you’re talking about.

Let me tell you, they do understand. And it hurts. And you should be ashamed of yourself.

When you call someone bipolar, because they aren’t acting right, or when you call someone suicidal because they accidentally did something to harm themselves, do you ever stop to think that maybe someone who is hearing your conversation is hurting? Or how about when you tease someone about not having friends, and you tell them that they should just kill themselves, have you ever stopped to think that maybe that’s all they think about all day long? And you have just added enough fuel to start their fire?

When you joke about people in therapy, or in AA, or those who are truly hurting, it hurts. You have no idea that battle that people face. When you call someone fat, or ugly, have you ever thought that maybe they are suffering from depression, and the fact that you just pointed out something solidified their worst fears and now they might not see tomorrow because of your insensitivity?

Therapy is not a joke. I know that there are therapists that aren’t that great. They don’t do their jobs well, because they are in it just for the paycheck. But those who need help and take up the courage to go to therapy, that’s a big deal. Those who are dealing with social anxieties take a great step to even be able to pick up the phone to call the damn doctor. It takes even more courage to get out of bed and get dressed to go to your appointment. And it takes even more courage to sit there in the waiting room, waiting to be called into the back. They could turn and run, but it takes courage to stay. And when you sit there and make fun of them for being in therapy, it knocks the courage right out of them. When you laugh at me for being in therapy, it hurts. Because it took a great deal of courage for me to find someone. It takes even more courage to tell strangers about what happened to you as a child or as a teenager, to talk about how you want to kill yourself. But you do it, because you want to get better. Then, someone makes a joke at your expense, how are you supposed to feel? The confidence that was there, is gone. And it makes me wonder if I’m going to be able to go back, because what if you make fun of me again?

Do you see the cycle? And how hurt can lead to so much more? And how you see something as a joke that isnt’ a joke?

Bipolar disorder, PTSD, depression, anxiety, alcoholism, addiction, cutting, rape, mental issues, mental retardation, all these, they aren’t jokes. And I don’t see how you can sit there and call yourself a caring individual or a Christian and still act like this. Oh, but that’s right, you didn’t mean it like that. And that’s supposed to make everything better. Put a band-aide on it.

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About Preslee

I am diagnosed with Bipolar 2 Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, Panic and Anxiety disorders, and PTSD. I write about my own personal experiences and thoughts.

Posted on June 30, 2013, in Life, Mental Health, Support and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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