Even though taking medication is a normal (and necessary) part of managing mental health, it’s still quite stigmatized — but it won’t be for much longer, if Lena Dunham has anything to say about it.
The “Girls” star has been admirably outspoken in the past about living with OCD, anxiety and depression. Now, she’s further combatting the stereotypes about mental illness by expressing her frustration with the way pop culture portrays women on psychiatric meds.
“Lately I've been noticing that nearly every pop cultural image we see of a woman on psychiatric medication is that of an out-of-control, exhausting and exhausted girl who needs help,” she wrote on Instagram, accompanied by a stock photo of a “crazy” woman reaching for pills. “But guess what? Most women on meds are women who have been brave enough to help themselves.”
Dunham continued with a plea for people to start flipping the narrative and recognize the amazing things that medication can do for mental health.
“It's important that we see normalizing portrayals of people, women, choosing to take action when it comes to their mental health,” she wrote. “Meds didn't make me a hollowed out version of my former self or a messy bar patron with a bad bleach job. They allowed me to really meet myself. I wish that for every lady who has ever struggled. There's really no shame. Night, dolls.”
Dunham soon followed up with another post showing various pills on her tongue, accompanied by the caption, “Can I live?”
Yes, Lena. Yes, you can.