We have a tendency to use mental health terms very likely to describe how we are feeling. We could be saying that we are OCD if we are continuously cleaning our cluttered desk, we call someone crazy if we disagree with their point of view, or bipolar if someone is constantly changing their mind. By preventing saying these mental health terms so loosely, you will not be hurting the feelings of those who really do struggle with these mental illnesses.


Having bipolar disorder is when you have manic and depressive episodes. In society, people use that term to describe someone who is constantly changing their mind. Being bipolar is not just about having trouble making decisions, but in not being able to sleep, loss of productivity, and lack of motivation. Instead of only keeping what your definition of bipolar disorder is, educate yourself on what being bipolar really means as a whole. If people knew how hard and frustrating bipolar disorder could be, people would not use the term the way it is used now. After all, you would not be saying to someone “you are so like cancer” since we know how serious cancer can be. The same can be said with mental illness.


One of the most widely-used terms is crazy whenever someone is exhibiting out of control behavior. This can be insensitive to those who are struggling with mental illness. It would be said a long time ago that “crazy” people are those struggling with mental illness who are admitted to a psych ward. People who have a mental illness are not crazy and it is no different than those struggling with a physical disease. We do not call them crazy for being in pain and struggling with something beyond their control. The problem is that the word crazy is embedded in the vocabulary of this generation that we do not realize how insensitive it is until it is pointed out.


OCD brings intrusive thoughts and extreme anxiety. In slang terms, OCD is to describe someone who is really clean and organized. By saying it is only about being a perfectionist, you are showing that you do not have a full understanding of the disorder. By avoiding using these terms to describe what you mean, you can help de-stigmatize mental illness and will prevent any feelings from being hurt who have these mental illnesses.


Located in Georgetown, Texas, Alma Loma is a transformative living center to help those struggling in early recovery to transition out of our Psychiatric and Substance Abuse residential center. Alma Loma believes that addiction is born from an untreated mental illness in which our facility is willing to help you. Our facility offers residency, medication management education, individualized treatment, life skills education, 12-step support, and more tools to bring patients the confidence to be able to live an independent life. For more information, please call us at 866-457-3843.