Jessica Stebbins, M.S., Registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern
Discovery Institute, P.A. Rockledge,FL
Serving Brevard County
Catherine Zeta Jones is the latest celebrity to come out with a statement regarding her mental health. Her publicist reported on Wednesday (4/13/11) that she had checked herself into a mental hospital for a brief stay for treatment of Bipolar II Disorder*. Looking at this beautiful actress who seems to have everything, no one would be able to tell that she has been suffering from a mental disorder. But that is the way mental disorder is, it does not discriminate! Although hard to believe, at any one point in time, about 50% of the population is experiencing symptoms of a mental disorder. And yet, a stigma still remains against mental illness and those who experience any of the many disorders.
My hope is that more celebrities will use their fame to aid society by being upfront about their mental illness. Maybe then, the stigma will slowly start to fade and other people will feel less embarrassed about seeking treatment. In the mean time, it is up to us to try to gain a better understanding of mental illness and begin to look at it more like any other illness. As stated in an interview on the Today Show, her mental illness should not be looked at differently than her husband, Michael Douglas’s, throat cancer.
If you are looking for aBrevard County counselor or Brevard County Marriage and Family Therapist, please give me a call. My office is located in Rockledge and I would be more than happy to talk with you.
*Bipolar II Disorder is a form of mood disorder in which a person experiences times of depression and other times of a mild mania. Most people understand what depression is but mania can come in several forms including irritability, sleeplessness, or intense energy. About 2.5% of theU.S.population (above 18 years of age) are diagnosed with bipolar disorder.