Society teaches us to care for one another. As children, we're constantly told to help each other - 'sharing is caring'; and adulthood repeats the same message: 'a problem shared is a problem halved' and all that. So when we're mentally unwell, getting help is so shameful is it?

It's not even from an individual level. To go seek help when you struggle with mental illness is incredibly hard, and even harder when the helper doesn't help. To decide you want to take that step requires a hell of a lot of determination, motivation, resilience and patience. And sometimes, people aren't ready to take that step, and that's ok: given the stigma surrounding mental health in general, it can be hard to even admit to yourself that you're not ok. Maybe you've been taught to bottle it all up; maybe it's personal preference; maybe it's the worry of the potential burden that a diagnosis might put on you or your loved ones. I get it. I've been there too.

But what irritates the hell out of me is the outsiders who judge us for looking after ourselves. Cos that's what it is essentially isn't it? Being put on medication or referred to therapy is our method of looking after our minds.

When you tell someone you take medication or see a therapist or have gone/are going into hospital for mental health issues, judgement is still there. Apparently this means we're 'weak', 'dangerous', 'unstable', 'crazy', 'over-sensitive', 'to be avoided' etc etc. And all that for getting some help? For taking a positive step? Sorry, that just doesn't add up in my mind.

What those lucky few who have zero experience of mental illness desperately need to understand is that there is a huge separation between the illness and the person. They are two different things.

You break a bone, you go to hospital, you get a cast. Simple, and no one bats an eyelid. You mention the words 'help' and 'mental' in the same sentence - you're tarnished. They see you and the illness as one. To them, you're the toxicity that can ruin lives. NOPE. That's the illness alone, not the human being.

I'd like to think that we as a society actually do give a damn about each other (even if recent events seem to point otherwise) so why are we stigmatising those getting help? It makes it harder to continue, to seek again if necessary. There's nothing wrong with it. It's hard to do, but it's courageous. It shows strength. I've seen a therapist twice and am currently on a waiting list to see another. I know people who take medication for mental health issues. I know people who have been hospitalised for mental health issues. It's all ok, and it should be celebrated.

We, as a whole, have got to get better at encouraging each other to look after ourselves, even if it requires some treatment.

If we're not ready to do it yet, that's ok too. But when we do, see the positive in it please?