Imagine for a moment you saw a big rabbit wherever you went.
And imagine, for a moment, that no one else could see the big rabbit, even though it talked and told jokes and was generally a well mannered rabbit fellow.
They’d tell you you’re crazy.
But you’d still believe in the rabbit.
They’d stick their hand through the air where the rabbit was.
“Oh, he moved” you’d say.
They’d tell you you’re talking to the air.
“Excuse me! Me and Harvey were chatting before you so rudely interrupted!”
Nothing they could do could convince you of the absence of Harvey.
Now consider the case of individuals with any number of conditions, from Anorexia Nervosa to Body Dysmorphic Disorder to severe depression.
These all have their Harveys.
Except in these cases Harvey is now some litigious demon Herod.
People see you’re feeling down. They ask you “what’s wrong”? or “why are you so sad? you’re such a good person!”
Herod of course whispers in your ear that you’re the scum of the earth. That there’s no one worse than you. That everyone would be better off without you. Even when people confront that directly, and say they would be very sad if you were no longer with them, Herod comes up with articulate reasoning that reminds you that they’re just lying. That they just pity you.
And I want my readers to think about that for a second.
When you tell someone with a disorder “I’d be very sad if you died”.
What exactly are you telling them? Are you telling them “Don’t kill yourself! Nono, nothing to do with your internal value or your personhood, just for ME! Don’t leave ME!”
I lived on that argument for a while. I took quite a while for me to accept my own internal value.
But that last one also sounds like the “snap out of it!” or “STOP!” ejaculations.
What do those really say?
“What are you doing?? Don’t do that you’re hurting yourself!! Snap out of it! Why are you doing this to….
I have to say I do not know the solution. But I think people without mood disorders should know what these things sound like.