Anonymous said: thoughts on self-diagnosis?
In all honesty, I know “angsty teenage bloggers” get a lot of shit for self diagnosis of mental illness… but i have nothing against those people. Not everyone has the money, the family/school/community support, the ability to open up (etc) that would allow them to see a doctor for their issues.
I’m well aware that self diagnosis “quizzes” and wikipedia pages are not enough to properly diagnose someone with any illness. And I’m also well aware that a myriad of symptoms can appear to be a mental illness and then be proved physical.
But for people suffering from undiagnosed mental illness, knowing their symptoms - of whatever disorder they may have - is important. It gives them the information they need to open up to someone, or seek further help. And if for whatever personal reason they can’t, they can still look into recovery online and do their best to recover on their own.
I “diagnosed” myself long before I first saw a psychiatrist. I was no “less sick” before that visit, and no “more sick” after. What changed was my circumstance, not my illness.
Diagnosis is not some “club” that requires initiation. A thirteen-year-old kid on tumblr lacking the support structures or confidence to open up, who then diagnoses themselves with depression - they don’t need ridicule, or scorn. They need help. And for many people, self-diagnosis helps them realise they need help, and then helps them to seek it.