Exorcising memories of internalised stigma: The demons of lived experience

Fox, Joanna (2021) Exorcising memories of internalised stigma: The demons of lived experience. World Journal of Psychiatry, 11 (3). pp. 63-72. ISSN 2220-3206

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.5498/wjp.v11.i3.63

Abstract

Public stigma and self-stigma impact negatively on the lives of people with mental health issues. Many people in society stereotype and discriminate against people with mental ill-health, and often this negative process of marginalisation is internalised by people with lived experiences. Thus, this negative internalisation leads to the development of self-stigma. In this article, I reflect on my own experiences of shame and self-stigma as a person with mental ill-health socially bullied by peers from my community and social groups. I present a personal narrative of both public and self-stigmatisation which I hope will enable me to exorcise memories of internalised stigma, which are encountered as my demons of lived experience. Using reflexivity, a process used widely in health and social care fields, I consider how social bullying shattered my fragile confidence, self-esteem, and self-efficacy in the early days of my recovery; the impact of associative stigma on family members is also explored. Following this, the potential to empower people who experience shame and stigma is explored alongside effective anti-stigma processes which challenge discrimination. I connect the concept of recovery with the notion of empowerment, both of which emphasise the importance of agency and self-efficacy for people with mental ill-health. Finally, I consider how the concepts of empowerment and recovery can challenge both the public stigma held by peers in the community and the self-stigma of those with lived experiences.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: stigma, user led narrative, reflexivity, empowerment, recovery, mental health
Faculty: Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine & Social Care
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic User
Depositing User: Symplectic User
Date Deposited: 04 Mar 2021 14:52
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2021 17:26
URI: https://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/706391

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