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I think the rise is due to a more open dialog concerning mental illness and our increased awareness. I was in college in the early 90s and in hind site I was suffering from mental illness. I felt suicidal, had a difficult time adjusting, was lonely and felt isolated. There were very few mental health services available at the time. I felt like it was wrong to talk about my suicidal thoughts and so I hid them. I only thought people with schizophrenia had mental illness and knew very little about anxiety and depression, or even how common it was. The counseling I received through the university was done by a student, not a listened therapist. I think that the rise in occurrences in mental illness we are seeing is due to our increased education and awareness. If I had know what exactly what was going on with myself, I would have advocated better treatment for myself. My view on mental illness was that it was not something that could be managed or even something that you could recover from. I certainly at that time did not want to be labeled "crazy". So I hid my thoughts and pushed through. I am hopeful that we will continue to find better treatments. I still have anxiety and depression and often wish I could have gotten better treatment when I was younger.
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