From my own experiences, I don't think that seeing a mental health professional is seen as 'fashionable', certainly not in my circles. During my pregnancy and after Baby was born, I was seeing a mental health nurse and psychologist because I was at risk of developing post-natal depression. I was also on anti-depressants, and while no one came out and explicitly said that what I was doing was a 'bad' thing, no one came out and explicitly said it was a 'good' thing either (except a couple of people). When I spoke about it with particular members of my family, it was clear they were uncomfortable with the idea.
I, on the other hand, think it's very helpful to have an objective and supportive third party in your corner. Especially if you feel that there are things you need help with. There is no shame in seeking help. In fact, I think it takes a lot of courage. And, while I do not advocate a 'drugs only' approach, taking medication can also help enormously.
You must do what is right for you. Remember: those who mind, don't matter, and those who matter, don't mind.
I think that's sad you didn't have more supportive friends - most people I know would think it was great that you were getting the help you (might) need before things got out of hand.
In my opinion, if you nip all these things in the bud, it's much easier to handle than if you let it spiral out of control and then other issues arise (in relationships around you or your feelings or the depth of it, it's much more work to get back on track)
I think times have changed and the stigma is much less now. We all know the pressures of everyday life, raising costs etc and with more in the media about mental illness we are honestly more open to it. If it's helping who cares what other think!
I don't think there is as much a stigma about it today as there used to be, but there is still a bit of uneasiness about it. Some people who go are embarrassed to talk about it, and those who want to talk about it, might have friends who feel embarrassed discussing it. I don't think it has grown fashionable, but just that more people are willing to use it.
From personal experience, I loathe therapy. I don't have a stigma about it, and think it can be very beneficial to some people, but for me, it was absolute hell.
It depends on the age of the person.
From 13 onwards it is really a normal thing.
That can be for eating problems, school issues, parent issues, drug and just life in general.
People say 20's into their 30's ect,It is looked at as 'a smart move'.
For people a little older in their 40's and 50's it is more of a stigma.Any older, and well yes! it sure is.They are the group that had the stiff upper lip.Still do, in a lot.
Truth be told, they are sometimes the ones who need it the most.
Your quite right when you say it is ''fashionable'' for some that's the 20's to 30's group.
I dont think so.Firstly one should seek help if they feel they need it.There is nothing wrong about it.It is a way of getting a different perspective for your problem.But one has to remember that solutions for our problems come from within and no point looking for it outside.
There has been a lot of progress due to a lot of hard work by professionals and organisations to demystify mental health issues.
Having said that I still think there is a certain "uncomfortableness" for some people to discuss mental health issues. I think for some it is much easier to understand a physical illness which can be seen like a broken leg.
The important thing to note is, it doesn't matter what others think, if you need the help of an objective professional then you should seek support from them. Often those nearest and dearest to us just aren't qualified to provide the support we seek.
Years ago I thought seeing one of these professionals meant I had problems and I was one of those perfectionists who couldn't do anything wrong or I couldn't cope.
Only in the last few years after my Aspergers diagnosis (which I only realised I had 7 years ago) have I begun to see the psychologist regularly, to help me with things I didn't realise I needed help with. I now don't care what others think, my top friends are supportive of my issues anyway so I can talk about this with them.
I think there still is a slight stigma unfortunately. Having worked in the mental health area for many years I know from experience how helpful psychiatrists and psych. nurses can be to patients and the good outcomes which can be achieved.
Yes there is still something of a stigma in seeing a psychiatrist/psychologist. Why I don't know. They are a health professional - that fact that their field is the mind and not the body in general really makes no different.
I don't think the stigma is anywhere as bad as it used to be. Family and friends are great support but sometimes it can be helpful to talk to a professional who understands and who can offer help from a different perspective. What if the problem is a friend or family member. Who to talk to then ?? Families and friends are great supports but they can only help so much. In this day and age, there are lots of pressures, depression and suicide. It is so important to learn coping mechanisms to prevent or help treat these problems. Fortunately with celebrities such as Buddy Franklin opening up about their mental health issues that tends to decrease the stigma. We are all human, we are not perfect and we all need to talk occasionally. There is nothing wrong with that. Those who think there is, or who think it is not normal or necessary are the ones with the problem. We can't be in control 100% of the time and we are not failures if we ask for help.