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What are your thoughts on jokes about psychiatric conditions/patients? Funny? Not funny? Offensive? Ok in some circumstances? Any blogs on the topic?

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They're sad. I am gaining greater compassion for other mental disorders but I concentrate mostly on OCD. The jokes wouldn't be half bad if they were at all accurate. They're not. OCD jokes are all about being neat and fussy and that's just not what OCD is about.

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I think there's a huge difference between OCD sufferers laughing at themselves, and other people laughing at a misconceived version of OCD (i.e. being a neatfreak).  The former is fine (and necessary for many!) but the latter is, in my opinion, damaging and ignorant.

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I can't really comment on general MH jokes, but from an OCD perspective (which I guess transfers to other MH jokes) even if they're not bad jokes, if they trivialise or mock then we have to challenge them I feel. I am not at all offended by most OCD jokes, but I have a duty of responsibility to challenge each and every one for two reasons. 1. For some people with OCD they will be offended, especially if they're having a traumatic day.  2. Every single OCD joke reinforces acceptability to mock and usually misconceptions. 

The saddest thing I am finding of late is everytime we challenge something a misuse of OCD at some point on social media someone will comment 'I have OCD, I am not offended we should all learn to laugh at these things'.....  if only it was that simple!  We must always see beyond our own OCD situation and the bigger picture. 

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On 10/11/2017 at 23:01, Ashley said:

I

The saddest thing I am finding of late is everytime we challenge something a misuse of OCD at some point on social media someone will comment 'I have OCD, I am not offended we should all learn to laugh at these things'.....  if only it was that simple!  We must always see beyond our own OCD situation and the bigger picture. 

This is the heart of the problem. 

Ashley is right, we can't allow things because they will stigmatise and trivialise, and for every one sufferer who might be OK with it, another might not. 

I inadvertently and off the cuff made a comment to a neighbour at a Christmas party last year, when he hadn't realised he had already played a particular carol for us all to sing. 

I realised later that it could have been misconstrued to suggest he was suffering from dementia, and I then felt terrible. 

But I soon realised that there was no evidence it had caused any distress - and if anyone had seen it that way, they would realise no offence was meant. 

 This issue did remind me how careful we need to be not to use humour in any way it might be offensive towards any mental health sufferer. 

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