Personal Narrative: Abnormal Psychology In My Family

1186 Words 5 Pages
When reflecting on my own family experience, I realize that my family has undoubtedly lived on a more fortunate path than most. No one in my immediate family has been affected with a diagnosed mental disorder and therefore growing up I was not exposed on an intimate level to the hardships and suffering as well as the stigma that mental disorder brings. My inner compass has always lead me towards care for others and empathy. As a result my interest in abnormal psychology stems from a desire to help people and lessen the suffering of others. Abnormal psychology is, at its base, the study of what “goes wrong”. However, an inordinate number of people suffer from some sort of mental illness that is categorized as “abnormal”. Normal and abnormal is not a dichotomy but a gradient scale in which the line between the two is subjective and blurry.
This naturally leads to the gray area of diagnosis and labeling. This process of diagnosing is not an exact science. It is subjective and very confusing. The definite question, that seems to have no definite answer is, when does someone’s quirks and eccentricities cross the line into being categorized as a disorder? My grandfather Aaron is someone who has always fit in an ambiguous place on this sliding scale of abnormal. While never diagnosed, my family would always remark that he was a “functional obsessive
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There needs to be a recognition that there are problems and that these problems are legitimate. So often mental health is swept under the rug and hidden. It is nothing to hide from, and nothing to be ashamed of. Everyone deals with it in their lives at some point and in some manner. Yet it seems to be talked about so little in classrooms and in today’s media. If the environment is more open and accepting than people would not be so afraid to seek treatment. The more comfortable it becomes, the faster people can get the treatment and support they

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