Recent Daily Prompt is: Is being “normal” — whatever that means to you — a good thing, or a bad thing? Neither?
Normal? Who knows what that is! We all claim to know – average, acceptable, some even say boring. Mental illness, theft, homosexuality, bird watching….every activity in life is deemed normal or abnormal depending on who’s doing the judging.
Me, I prefer cold hard facts to feelings. Show me the numbers. Abnormality can be defined as statistical infrequency, i.e. the issue in question is enjoyed / suffered / done by a statistically insignificant amount of the population.
So far so good.
However, with WHO estimating that 350 million people suffer from depression globally, some doubt is cast on its position in the abnormal pile. The same with mental health “issues” and the widely quoted 1-in-4 statistic. So, when does the abnormal become normal? And are we confusing normal with desirable?
While statistics suggest that it just might become “normal” to suffer from a mental illness it’s certainly not suddenly about to become desirable or en vogue just because “everyone’s doing it”. So, when faced with an abnormality, perhaps we shouldn’t be asking “is this normal”, perhaps instead we should be asking “are these circumstances that seem desirable to me”…