Meghan, Duchess of Sussex has claimed she has been labelled “crazy” and “hysterical” in the past.
During the latest episode of her Archetypes podcast titled The Decoding of Crazy released on Tuesday, the royal sought to unpack why women, and especially those in the public eye, are associated with the stereotype.
“Raise your hand if you’ve ever been called ‘crazy’ or ‘hysterical.’ Or what about ‘nuts,’ ‘insane,’ ‘out of your mind,’ ‘completely irrational’? O.K., you get the point. Now, if we were all in the same room and could see each other, I think it would be pretty easy to see just how many of us have our hands up? By the way, me too. I feel pretty strongly about this word, this label, ‘crazy,'” she said in the introduction. “The way that it’s thrown around so casually and the damage it’s wrought on society and women, frankly everywhere. From relationships to families being shattered, reputations destroyed and careers ruined. The stigma surrounding the word, it also has this silencing effect. This effect where women experiencing real mental health issues, they get scared. They stay quiet, they internalise, and they repress for far too long.”
Meghan didn’t share a specific example of when she has been associated with the labels.
Elsewhere in the podcast, the mother-of-two noted that the term “hysteria” was considered to be a mental health diagnosis up until 1980.
In response to the fact, guest Jenny Slate emphasised that it is a “definition created by a man”.
“It is a definition meant to shame and limit a certain type of experience,” she said, to which Meghan replied, “And that experience, let’s just call it what it is: emotions. Because that’s it. It’s just the emotional experience of something: scared, sad, angry, stressed, jealous, surprised, worried, insecure. Take your pick. Calling someone crazy or hysterical, completely dismisses their experience.”
To conclude the podcast, Meghan urged listeners to open up about their mental health.
“It can be really difficult. But if you feel like you need to, we encourage you to do so,” she added.
– Cover Media