Frowned Upon? The Bell Jar

From reading “The bell Jar” by Sylvia Plath a question that I formed throughout reading her book was why mental health is frowned upon in our society? It is evident throughout The Bell Jar  that Esther struggles with her mental health. I read an article a few weeks ago on facebook regarding a student’s issue at the University of Northern Michigan. After reading the article I thought immediately of The Bell Jar and what Esther was going through. What was happening at the University Of Northern Michigan was that the school would email students who were severely depressed and suicidal, and caution them about speaking to other students in the school about their suicidal or self destructive thoughts. The University thought students struggling with their mental health and talking to other students would overwhelm the students and interfere with their studies. Students that talked to other students would face disciplinary actions. I thought immediately of Esther because of how she felt so confined  with her mental health throughout the book and how others viewed her.

This article demonstrated to a certain degree why many people suffering with mental health  do not come open or feel accepted in speaking about it. People are judged and frowned upon in society with people believing that if someone is suffering with their mental health they “have something wrong with them” or they are “weak”. While that is completely false to assume. If society were more open and understanding with the overall concept of mental health, we would reduce the bullying and the suicide rates of individuals suffering with mental health. Individuals affected by mental health would feel more open and welcomed to coming out and seeking help.


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