Do the mildly mentally ill get or sympathise with the more serious cases?

An exchange on a social anxiety site with people with generally milder problems has left me wondering. Lot’s of ignorance out there.

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I don’t think socially anxious people see themselves as mentally ill. Which would leave them being as ignorant as any one else.


From my experience, those with mild mental illness are more apt to think you should just “get over” your problems as they have done. They frequently tell you different techniques to use to help you and when they don’t help your particular case, they get frustrated with you for not trying hard enough.

Obviously, this is a broad generalization, but, you get my point.


There are tons of people suffering from anxiety disorders and Major Depressive disorders, its not the same as someone suffering from chronic paranoia or a SZ disorder.

No comparison - once you are chronically paranoid or suffering from constant voices or delusions its a whole different ballgame.

I’ve got a mild case, yes I’m sympathetic. Do I want to hash it out with others in the hospital? Heck no.

Well said…yeah, when it comes to severe mental illness, it takes SYMPATHY and/or EMPATHY or PRO KNOWLEDGE with SYMPATHY or better yet EMPATHY to deal with someone like us.

I went to tutoring to understand empathy and sympathy. Empathy is “I understand and RELATE to this person who is suffering” whilst sympathy is “I FEEL SORRY for them but do not know what it’s like.”

They may have sympathy, but true empathy is hard to come by. I have true empathy for severely mentally ill…I am severely mentally ill…I am a victim…I suffer…I will never magically get better…

Don’t expect someone with some social anxiety to understand or try to understand actual scz. Everyone has social anxiety…the ones who don’t are on drugs or have been drinking or have a disorder or all of the above.

I actually want to write a dissertation on stigma between the severely mentally ill and the less mentally ill. I sense some heinous shite going on.


This is particularly true for delusional patients. For some delusions are not so much false, but simply unintelligible. Like Cotard’s, for instance. It is questionable whether a thorough empathic understanding of such patients is possible, especially when they stress their words should not be taken metaphorically. Of course, one can empathize ( and sympathize ) with ‘having a hard time’, but this is only a very general level of understanding another.

Wait a minute I sometimes have this Cotard delusion. I sometimes think that I am actually dead or in a coma and that this reality is being fed into my brain. I also think that the old me perhaps went on to live his life and died in combat and that this is some sort of afterlife. But I dismiss these thoughts as ■■■■■■■ crazy and I carry on.

I cannot really describe delusions. It is like they are some sort of deep rooted plant that one can trim or chop down but never uproot. It grows back and must be chopped down incessantly like Sisyphus and his eternal damnation of pushing the rock up the hill only to have to do it again. Or Prometheus (I think)- he gets his guts eaten out by birds of prey over and over again and can’t die.

Some nasty ■■■■ to live with!

Have you ever played the game Bullet Run? It’s a shooter, but when your guy hasn’t died for a while, it says “heat collector,” like it’s an award for having a pulse. It’s kind of like that.

Same. I’ve realized reading here that my symptoms are subthreshold - I’ve got an inkling of what some of the issues are like, but can’t comprehend what it must be like to have them blasting on 11 like I see some people describe. I’ve really had my eyes opened. I have a great deal of sympathy.

But I can say in the past I’ve definitely thought, I can get through this, so anyone can if it’s really important to them! Learning that not only do I have an easier path, but that I haven’t navigated as well as I thought, took some time.

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I am aware that I am probably at the relatively milder end of severe mental illness.

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I always think that mine is mild, but, then I see my psychiatrist and he acts like I am an inch from a psyche ward…

In 28 years of looking at everything from minor, “situational” anxiety or depression through “chronic” neurosis, then borderlinism, and genetically platformed, allostatically loaded, stressed-thrashed psychosis, it’s patently clear no one who isn’t sz (or a very sophisticated mental health pro) gets sz. NO ONE.

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I get it more than you think.

I think what @notmoses is trying to say is “anyone who doesn’t have psychosis.”

If he is saying that unless you have experienced psychosis you won’t be able to get it then that makes more sense to me.

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It ain’t pretty…

When I was hospitalized I felt sheepish about being there. There were anorexic women…suicidal patients…people you just know never had a chance.

I soon realized I was in the right place and that I was ill…but I still had massive empathy for those around me the whole time during my stays.

There are cases of later onset of this illness.

You don’t know you have the potential until it manifests. Still ignorance is a separate issue. Kind of ties into stigma.

If people were more informed. Not only would we be treated better, but waves of people would have the knowledge to get help and there would be less social pressure preventing them from acknowledging their illness.

I really don’t those changes are going to occur. Plan B find people who understand.

Made a real mistake opening up on that forum. Now some are using the fact I said I have severe mental illness to attribute everything I say to it. It’s as though for some all you are is your illness.