Yes. I am normal. I would like to declare that, loud and clear for everyone to hear. I am one of these "normal people". I also suffer from anxiety and bipolar disorder as an added bonus. But why am I not normal? I am normal. I have two legs, two arms, two eyes and a nose. I'm a human being, just like you. And I have issues. So okay, they might be in the DSM. But everyone has issues. It's not just me. And even if you don't have a mental illness, I still wouldn't believe you if you told me you had never felt anxious, or never felt sad, or that everything had gone perfectly in your life.
I don't see how saying "I'm normal" is trivializing an illness. How is that trivializing it? If you want to convince yourself that you have a serious life threatening disease and you want everyone to know how serious it is and feel sorry for you, then go for it. You'll become your own worst enemy. I know my illness is pretty serious...a few hospital visits, the fact that I've dropped out of college and that I'm not doing exams, a couple suicide attempts and a few lost friends has been enough to convince me of that. But why am I not normal??? I don't want to trivialize what I have, but I don't want to big my illness up and I don't want sympathy.
See, there's serious physical illnesses out there. I could have a heart problem. Am I normal? Yes, probably. I could be diabetic. Still normal. I could have kidney failure and be requiring daily dialysis and I would still be a normal person. But I have bipolar disorder and anxiety and suddenly I'm not? Why? Why am I not normal? Somebody answer that one please, because it hurts when people (Even people with anxiety or other issues) just that people like us aren't normal and then give a reason for it. Especially the ones who have self-diagnosed and think telling people they have social anxiety "sounds too tame" so they're gonna tell them they have panic disorder. I got challenged over replying that panic disorder is NOT the same as social anxiety. I didn't say it was better or worse. Just that it's not the same. I have both PD and SA, co-morbid with each other, along with a GAD diagnosis. And why is it a fucking competition between which type of anxiety is worse???
But that probably belongs in the frustration section, which this is not. So for the record, as recommended by an occupational therapist (Two, to be exact) I am NOT going to give myself a label of "Not normal". I would like to consider myself and anyone else with a mental illness, as a normal, human being with two legs, two eyes and a brain. This does not mean I am trivilizing your mental illness and or mine or that I don't realize how serious it is. I would just like to be considered normal, if at all possible, because in my opinion, I am. I just have some issues that I need to deal with.
Edit-Hope that doesn't offend anyone. But please, stop telling me how serious and life threatening your social anxiety is. It's not. I'm 18, and as [BEEP] as life can be, I don't plan to end it all at 18. Also, just because I'm 18, does not mean my anxiety is any less than yours. And no, it is NOT normal teenage shit, so please don't patronize me with that.
(This turned into a bit of a rant. But the point remains. I am normal. You are normal. We all are normal. And anxiety doesn't change that fact. )