On The Observed Dichotomy Between Mental and Physical Illness

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HealingInProcess

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I must admit, this part made me chuckle; quite ICD-10-esque.

It's that my desk feels the safest place, really. And my officemate and I have had discussions where he has said he doesn't want me to feel that I can't come out to the office if I'm not feeling my best and if being in the office is helpful for me.

Usually outdoor walks are something I do to help regulate, but we're in the middle of winter here.

Going to the bathroom and just sitting on the toilet with the seat down, too, is something I occasionally do to take a time out, but that one's potentially triggering due to its connection to my abuse.

If you spoke with your officemate about it I don't see the problem.
 

intothelight

Moderator
If you have your own space, and the tears are not disrupting or interfering, with your co-workers ability to complete their jobs, then it shouldn't be an issue. If your depression doesn't interfere with your ability to do your job, then its not an issue. Illness, physical or mental, only becomes an issue when it negatively impacts the person doing the job or those around them and keeping people from doing what they were hired to do. Not just the occasional bad day.
 

scout86

MyPTSD Pro
The first thing I thought when I read your post is that there's a significant difference between what makes a person uncomfortable and what's actually small t traumatic. (I also had to wonder if this person is actually a friend.)

The other thing I thought of is something that happens with my T. He's a big softy. Tears up quite easily. It freaked me out at first. (Partly because I was raised to feel responsible for other people's feelings, so this is relevant to why I'm there.) Turns out this is just how he reacts to stuff. He's ok, I'm ok, it's still safe to say stuff, it's all good. We had to talk about that, of course. (My first reaction is still fear, but it's getting better.) As I've thought about it, I deeply believe he's entitled his honest reaction, even if it makes me uncomfortable. (And I have the same right to feel uncomfortable. Neither of us is wrong.)

So, unless it's a distraction beyond coping with, I think it's a bit unreasonable to ask you to stay home so you don't inflict your tears on the rest of the crew. But it might be worth talking about with them.
 

EveHarrington

MyPTSD Pro
If your crying, soft silent tears, has that much of an effect on others, then who really has the dysregulation problem? I’d be arguing it’s not you!

I think this isn’t a dysregulation issue. Having normal every day emotions isn’t dysregulation.

This comes down to the labeling of emotions as “bad” and “good”. People are ok with smiling and laughing but crying means you’re bonkers and need to take a sick day? What is the world coming to?

I’d argue that smiling and laughing are the same distance from neutral as crying soft silent tears. Again, normal emotions aren’t bad!

And oh, here in the USA we get very few sick days and vacay days when compared to the rest of the world. I think most bosses would be irked if you said I can’t come in today because I’m sad and crying.
 

HealingInProcess

Not Active
If your crying, soft silent tears, has that much of an effect on others, then who really has the dysregulation problem? I’d be arguing it’s not you!

I think this isn’t a dysregulation issue. Having normal every day emotions isn’t dysregulation.

This comes down to the labeling of emotions as “bad” and “good”. People are ok with smiling and laughing but crying means you’re bonkers and need to take a sick day? What is the world coming to?

I’d argue that smiling and laughing are the same distance from neutral as crying soft silent tears. Again, normal emotions aren’t bad!

And oh, here in the USA we get very few sick days and vacay days when compared to the rest of the world. I think most bosses would be irked if you said I can’t come in today because I’m sad and crying.

We need more humanity in the workplace.
 

Sideways

Sponsor
I think most bosses would be irked if you said I can’t come in today because I’m sad and crying.
I think this is really interesting, and it maybe highlights that there is potentially really significant cultural things going on in this situation, and influencing the expectations of the people in this particular workplace. Nuanced things that might be quite different from one place to the next.

Because here in Australia, in some industries, it’s becoming really common for people to call in and take a “mental health day”.

It’s not formally recognised as a thing in most workplaces, it’s largely an informal (potentially cultural) thing that is becoming quite common. It’s basically a person calling in to say “I’m not in a good headspace today, and am taking the day off for my mental health”.

It’s informal and varies between workplaces and industries. But essentially boss understands that the person is owning that they don’t have a physical condition, and won’t be able to provide a medical certificate. Instead of faking the flu or a migraine, they’re just being totally up front that they just aren’t up for it. And as long as it isn’t being abused, an increasing number of bosses will put that down as sick leave or unpaid leave without batting an eye.

So maybe there is a bigger cultural dynamic going on here than may seem obvious at first glance? Even between different industries expectations can vary dramatically.
 

Friday

Moderator
It’s not formally recognised as a thing in most workplaces, it’s largely an informal (potentially cultural) thing that is becoming quite common. It’s basically a person calling in to say “I’m not in a good headspace today, and am taking the day off for my mental health”.
"Mental health days" are a thing in the USA too. Taking one just requires faking the flu or a migraine.

And if you're one of the millions of workers without paid leave - which is completely optional for employers here in the land of the free - you get nada.
Here on the west coast, (If one has Paid Time Off at all) one usually has either paid sick days & PTO & vacation days -or- simply PTO, use at your own discretion. Of course, the numbers vary hugely between companies. 6 days per year vs 60. 15 seems to be the most common locally, but we’ve also got some mega employers who have drool worthy benefits packages. Including up to 60 days per annum PTO that you can sell back half of them, the rest are use it or lose it.

Granted, drool worthy benefits almost always comes with big time politicking (using PTO for work from home days, childcare days, etc. rather than actual time off), career advancement, etc. but c’est la vie. Better than no PTO, and only 31 scheduled hours a week (even if you actually work 60) to avoid giving employees even basic health insurance, much less sick leave, vacation days, pensions, IRA matching, etc.

It’s very feast or famine ‘round here.
 
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hithere

MyPTSD Pro
I really love your post in many, many ways. I have thought about this alot as I have gotten emotionally healthier and learned how my early experiences have carved into my brain certain subconcious beliefs. I think many, many people and especially males, have been severely punished as young children for expressing sadness and hurt. I read where the "look of contempt" on a caregiver's face causes deep shame and almost irreversible emotional damage to children--just for being HUMAN. I think there are alot of people out there so uncomfortable with people who are experiencing sorrows, grief, depression, anything negative that their insides are freaking out. The core beliefs are screaming "danger danger" someone is depressed, you are all now in danger. They've witnessed their siblings getting the shit kicked out of them for crying or negative emotions. It sends big alarm bells.

There's also the whole "get over it" and other judgemental attitudes toward people with anxiety issues. I think what you posted is right on.

There's a facebook meme I've seen that says somethig to the order of "it's awesome that even though Eeyore is clinically depressed he still gets invited to adventures and parties, and no one expects him to pretend that he is happy. They love him any way."

I remember being clinically depressed as a teenager, lots of shit was happening to me, but I would get punched in the face (bloody noses) by my father for "looking sad" and "moping" around the house, and ordered to be cheerful, no one wanted to be around that. I have heard others experienced similar responses from parents as teens. Sometimes teens are just sad because it's f*cking hard to go to public school and deal with all the assholes! Depression may not have anything to do with. Well not until you get punched in the face for suffering from rejection and ridicule at school. Fun times. Good post topic. How do we change the world?
 
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