The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is a book where mental disorders are explained and classified. It is one of the most popular books in regard to mental health. The DSM is well known among Psychologists and Psychiatrics and they often work with it.
I used to be a big follower of that book, but some time ago I changed my mind due to the direct experience with people and the therapy. By that time I realized that a book is not enough to understand someone’s problem. And what once seemed true, not it is hard to believe.
This book describes all the mental disorders and the symptoms that produce them. One of the main problems is that everything is a symptom: behaviors, thoughts and feelings that are part of our daily life are understood as pathologic.
Sadness periods accompanied by tears, obsessive thoughts about food, horrible pictures of accidents, disturbing thoughts, trouble sleeping, complications reaching the orgasm and proper excitation, nervousness while driving, afraid to make decisions, frustration feelings, annoyance and constant moodiness… all of the above and more are COMPLETELY NORMAL, they are part of everybody’s life.
What I want to say is that if there would be psychological manuals with a positive look about what “mental disorders” are, the professionals who deal with mental health would offer a vision of hope in which you can feel the anxiety but you don’t have an anxiety disorder, you can have sadness moments during a time but you don’t have a depression… But despite that, if you meet all the requirements and you are diagnosed, that diagnose has to be a positive one and it can’t be hopeless for the person.
Labeling someone may be discouraging not only for the person who is labeled, but also for the professionals who treat him/her.