the kilmer cure (thekilmercure) wrote,
the kilmer cure

  • Mood:


I’ve given a lot of thought to the subject of passing. Because, as PC as modern American society is, it’s still commonplace—acceptable—to make slurs about the mentally ill. People say, “Oh, you know me; I’m so crazy!” You’re not crazy. You’re wacky, maybe, or zany, or maybe you have a unique fashion sense or can’t hold your liquor. You’re not crazy. I’m crazy. Will you be on medication the rest of your life? Do you fantasize about killing yourself? No? Then you’re not fucking crazy, so stop saying it.

A still from 'Spartan'
Seriously. We are not joking about this.

“Bipolar,” specifically, is often used. Anyone whose keel isn’t even gets the kneejerk, “Oh, Jimmy is so bipolar sometimes.” Jimmy is moody; maybe Jimmy’s an asshole. Jimmy is not bipolar; stop saying it.

A still from 'Blind Horizon'
You wouldn’t pretend to have a head injury to spice up your conversation, would you?

The worst part is that the default assumption is that you’re sane. Bipolar disorder is a silent illness; it isn’t like blindness or polio, where people can just look at you and tell. They assume you’re “normal”—read, sane—until proven otherwise.

A still from 'Heat'
You’re only as sick as your secret.

So you pass, until someone says something. Until someone says that they’re crazy for wearing white after Labor Day, or says something ignorant like people with mental illnesses don’t need drugs; they just need to think positively. And then, maybe you can’t keep your big mouth shut, and everybody knows your secret.

A still from 'The Salton Sea'
It feels better this way, doesn’t it?

Or maybe you can keep your mouth shut, and you sit there, persecuted and hunted, an aberration. But passing.

Tags: bipolar disorder, passing
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