Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.
I feel I defy a gender stereotype by being a woman and open about my mental illness and learning disabilities. I suffer from OCD, GAD, Dyscalculia, and BPD. There are a lot of expectations on women; we are expected to do a LOT of work on a daily basis, from domestic activities to making ourselves look more presentable. This work is socially brushed off as easy because it’s considered “women’s work”. For me, all of that on top of my job and school. And we’re expected to do all this, and SMILE. But most of the time, I don’t feel like smiling. This picture sums up two things for me: One, this is how my head often feels; like a blur. My thoughts are mushed and racing, my reactions severe. The other thing it encapsulates for me is a lack of identity and the confusion I feel over how I should be presenting myself to the world. Mental illness makes it hard for me to do so many basic things a lot of people take for granted; showering, for example. I’m expected to leave the house in things other than sweatpants with make up on my face (depending on who you ask, the make up should be either natural-looking [a lot of people don’t realize that “the natural look” doesn’t mean a completely clean face] or obvious, but it’s pretty much agreed it should be there) and be generally agreeable. Mental illness is an “icky” topic that makes neurotypical people uncomfortable, unless it’s a male author writing about it. Then it’s “edgy” or “deep”. That’s not to say that mentally ill men are accepted universally, just that in my personal experience I’ve had men be more accurately diagnosed or helped before me.
Have you or a loved one experienced a lack of equity because they or you didn’t fit in with neurotypical society? How did you make yourself heard?
You can participate too!
- Take a picture you feel encapsulates either how you feel internally or how you are perceived externally.
- Upload the picture to social media
- Invite your friends to respond and share their own #HumanRightsSelfie!