Health & Fit Dear Sia, Please Don’t Use 'Borderline' as an Insult
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Singer, songwriter and director Sia Kate Isobelle Furler, more commonly known as Sia, recently posted a tweet that thepersonality disorder ( ) community has been rightfully calling out.
As Sia publicly supported Johnny Depp during his legal battle with ex-wife Amber Heard, unfortunately, the tweet refers to Heard’s abusive behavior as “classicbehavior on her part.”
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While I am not bashing Sia and will not be making claims about the Amber Heard and Johnny Depp case, we need to address the stigma and usage ofas a synonym with being an abuser.
The comment is especially hurtful to thecommunity considering Sia is frequently about her own struggles, , , and . She also recurrently connects with fans in her music, which often reflects themes of .
Amber Heard & Johnny Depp: The Real ABUSER FINALLY REVEALED!! (UNCENSOR…via classic borderline behavior on her part.
— sia (@Sia)
Sadly, those of us withmay face stigma and ableist comments from people who have other types of mental illnesses themselves.
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has long been associated with , and comments such as these perpetuate it. Although all mental illnesses are stigmatized, tends to have a surplus stigma. The symptoms tend to be incredibly intense, chronic and interpersonal. Historically, some professionals used as a and adopted the term “ ” to stigmatize patients they stereotyped as “difficult/manipulative/crazy” when they may not even have the condition at all.
Stigma does not go without consequences. Thankfully, these myths and biases have improved over time, but they can impact public outlooks and the quality of care someone receives. We may struggle to feel comfortable reaching out for help or support.showed stigma is a common “crisis trigger.”
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We may also feel alienated and demonized. As someone with, I have often felt rejected and unwelcomed in spaces, given the frequent stigmatizing comments and the tendency to try to separate “us” from “them.” Comments such as, “I’m not crazy or violent or anything — it’s not like I am or schizophrenic!” unfortunately are not unheard of within the community.
Even more,is the with the suicide rate. estimated up to 80% of people with attempt suicide an average of three times.
It is important to realize while the “” comment is wrong, and many people with understandably want the tweet deleted, that does not mean we are criticizing her for supporting Johnny Depp. These are not mutually exclusive viewpoints. In fact, many people with , although not all, have experienced themselves as one possible contributing factor for developing the condition in the first place. Additionally, we may be at greater risk for or remarks towards our symptoms.
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Rather, we are emphasizing that ashould not be incorrectly used as a synonym for abusive behavior. If we replace the condition in this example with another condition such as “classic depressive behavior,” “classic behavior” or “classic PTSD behavior,” hopefully people can understand why it is wrong. The statement is a generalization and a stigmatizing reference. Likewise, exclaiming someone is abusive because of a mental illness overly simplifies .
does not technically make someone abusive (and statistics do not support this), nor does it excuse abusive behavior like anyone else. However, remember it is not our responsibility or authority to make an “ ,” and it is definitely not OK to simplify and sum up the complexities of abusive behavior to just being a “classic .” It is harmful to a .
Back in the summer, Johnny Depp mixed together multiple terms by, “She is a calculating, diagnosed personality; she is sociopathic; she is a narcissist; and she is completely emotionally dishonest,” as far as we know, Heard has not been confirmed to be diagnosed with . ? Sociopath? Narcissistic? None of these are the same. This claim may have unfortunately given the impression that it is acceptable to misuse the term.
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is really a severe and treatable . It is characterized by emotion dysregulation and extreme emotional hypersensitivity. People with tend to experience intense emotional reactivity for long periods of time, with a slow return to a stable emotional baseline.
Just a few of the main symptoms include chronic emptiness,, mood reactivity and instability (for example, intense anger to , idealization, and , all within a few hours), recurring self-injury, suicidal ideation and impulsivity (e.g., drug use). Other main symptoms include stress-induced , paranoid ideation and hallucinations.
One of the most notable symptoms ofare the extreme reactions to and preoccupations with . Someone with may have abandonment-themed , and mundane events, such as brief separations, may trigger panic or paranoia. Overall, the symptoms impact major areas of functioning, including emotion, behavior, interpersonal, cognitive and sense of self/identity.
If “” is an insult and used synonymously with abusive behavior, what exactly do you think of people who actually live with the pain of ?
We are not stating Sia should not have publicly shown support for ansurvivor. We are not agreeing with or defending Amber Heard’s abusive behavior. We are emphasizing that anyone, especially people in her position with a large platform that may influence the perceptions and words of other people, should not stigmatize a severe and default us to abusers.
People withare not inherently abusers, and it is not “classic” of people with to be abusive.
For further reading about the stigma of, check out the following articles from The Mighty.
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