Woman Shows That Mental Health Struggles Are Just As ‘Normal’ As Glamour Selfies

Amber Smith via Facebook
Amber Smith via Facebook

Social media is often scorned for being a vapid cesspool of political commentary, selfies, and pictures of everyone — but you — living the good life. No one has a bad day on Facebook, seemingly.

Amber Smith, of Rugby, United Kingdom, aimed to shatter that perception with a sternly worded Facebook post and selfie taken right after she suffered an anxiety attack.

God knows why I’m doing this, but people need some home truths.

Top picture: What I showcase to the world via social media. Dressed up, make up done, filters galore. The ‘normal’ side to me.

Bottom picture: Taken tonight shortly after suffering from a panic attack because of my anxiety. Also the ‘normal’ side to me that most people don’t see.

I’m so sick of the fact that it’s 2016 and there is still so much stigma around mental health. It disgusts me that so many people are so uneducated and judgmental over the topic.

They say that 1 in 3 people will suffer with a mental illness at some point in their life. 1 in 3! Do you know how many people that equates to worldwide?! And yet I’ve been battling with anxiety and depression for years and years and there’s still people that make comments like ‘you’ll get over it’, ‘you don’t need tablets, just be happier’, ‘you’re too young to suffer with that’

FUCK YOU. Fuck all of you small-minded people that think that because I physically look ‘fine’ that I’m not battling a monster inside my head every single day.

Smith closed by writing, “Please don’t be afraid to share this, there needs to be more awareness. The more awareness there is, the less people who will suffer in silence” — a message that helped the post amass more than 5,300 shares in a few days, and flood Smith’s inbox with hundreds of direct messages.

Smith isn’t the first to take on mental health stigma via social media. Blogger Erin Jones also shared her experience with her mental health struggles in photos, specifically about why she restarted her anti-anxiety and antidepressant medication after having briefly stopped taking them.

“I have tried living this life without prescription help,” Jones wrote in a Facebook post. “It seems to have me on top of the world one minute and rocking in the corner the next. There is no consistency. I’m done with that. Anxiety and antidepressant medication to the rescue. Sometimes, folks, we just need help.”