Helping reduce the stigma

Discrimination and stigma increase the difficulty of recovery. Please join me in reflecting on the role discrimination plays in the lives of people suffering from mental illness.

  • “When I first started battling with my mental health, I thought the mental illness would be the hardest thing to deal with – little did I know that other people’s reactions to said mental illness would make the battle into a war.” (
  • “Those who suffer from mental illness are stronger than you think. We must fight to go work, care for our families, be there for our friends, and act ‘normal’ while battling unimaginable pain.” (
  • “The only thing more exhausting than having a mental illness is pretending like you don’t.” (
  • “I need them to be present with me in the storm, not just tell me what to do.” (
  • “Stigma against mental illness is a scourge with many faces, and the medical community wears a number of those faces.” ― Elyn R. Saks
  • Stigma of Mental Illness: 57% of all adults believed that people are caring and sympathetic to persons with mental illness. Only 25% of adults with mental health symptoms believed that people are caring and sympathetic to persons with mental illness. (

These stories are not unique. They are not anomalies. These are the voices of those who live with mental illness. As service providers, it is critical that we not only provide compassionate, non-judgmental care to those we serve, but to also help lift their voices in our own communities. By reducing the stigma that follows mental illness, we will help improve the quality of the lives of the people we work with every day. Make it a point to have conversations with friends and family about what you do and who you serve. It is only through these conversations that we can bring understanding and reduce the stigma and discrimination associated with having a mental illness.

– Mechelle Dhondt, CEO