The American culture as a whole seems to have somewhat of an obsession when it comes to perfectionism and uniform thought. However, the obsession is conflicting in order to satisfy the individual. Let me explain. On one hand, society promotes individuality, being unique and original. On the other hand, there are certain standards that are considered “normal” and whenever one of the said individuals strays from the expectation, they are looked down upon or considered too original. There is a fine line between maintaining a sense of individuality but also conforming to social “norms.” Or is there? Taking a closer look and applying this notion to the field of mental health illnesses, the community as a whole has become somewhat corrupted and broken to the point where it is influencing the general public in a negative way. Individuals that suffer from actual disorders such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety disorder, or depression are viewed as different, but also harmful, unpredictable, or unstable. However, who is to say what normal really is? It seems that if someone is going through a particularly rough time in their life that causes sadness, or a period of depression, they are viewed as having an illness relating to something more significant such as major depressive disorder or anxiety disorder. This is not the case. As human beings, one of the amazing capabilities that we do possess is to feel emotion, and very deeply. Just because someone is not perfectly happy, composed, and stress-free at all times, does not make them not normal. In fact, I think that if someone is that way at all times, perhaps that is not normal. Humans are supposed to feel, grieve, experience a range of emotions, and struggle with the purpose to overcome challenges and improve. Rather than facing a conflict or life challenge with an open-mind and positivity, medication is often the first method of treatment. “Here, take this and you will feel better” is often the mindset of many corrupted individuals in the medical and pharmaceutical community. Some may disagree with me, but why do we have to always feel better immediately? Maybe it is good to feel all of our emotions, even if they aren’t pleasant of positive ones. This allows us as human beings to recognize every part of ourselves and how to evolve, progress, improve, and reach our fullest potentials. Counseling is an excellent method to observe the root of someone’s problem. Through therapy, education, realization, and goals can be attained and achieved. Challenges are good because they make us stronger. However, unfortunately, when someone is “diagnosed” with a disorder that they do not even have and medication is prescribed, it is essentially a band-aid that is masking the problem and further encouraging it’s development, dormantly. That being said, there are individuals that truly suffer from such diagnosable disorders and can benefit from medication, but coupled with counseling too. Individuals that are experience a loss or a sudden change can feel a range of emotions that can be classified as some of the symptoms that are observed in depressive and other mood disorders, but that dose not mean that they have that disorder. It does not mean that they should be prescribed a synthetic drug to alter their brain chemistry and emotions. This expectation to be happy, fulfilled, and constantly without pain, suffering, and other maladies is unrealistic and sets a standard of what normal should be by defining it by perfectionism and shame. Humans are not perfect. We are beautifully flawed, and that is what contributes to varying personalities within society to make each person individual, unique, and one-of-a-kind. We need to redefine what “normal” is supposed to be and stop being afraid to push those boundaries. According to Dr. John Grohol, “perhaps it’s time for a more nuanced, psychologically-based diagnostic system to adopted by mental health professionals, one that doesn’t medicalize issues and turn every emotional concern into a problem that has to be labeled and medicated.” I could not agree more with him and feel that this issue is everyone’s problem and should be treated as such.