Mental illness and stigma: how to talk about it

A group of young carers discuss how they talk about their parent’s mental illness with friends, and what can make it difficult to bring up in conversation.


This film is part of a series of group discussions on parental mental illness. If you want to watch more from this collection, you can find them on the Resources section of our website.

Teachers/facilitators’ notes:

If you are using this film as part of a lesson or workshop, you might find the information below useful to support discussion.

Teaching points

This longer film naturally leads on from ‘Mental illness and stigma: how to deal with it’. In this film, the young carers are trying to imagine their friends’ perceptions about mental illness. The film raises several themes you may wish to discuss in your group, for example:

  • What defines a ‘normal’ parent?
  • What constitutes ‘normal’ life?
  • What do other people think and why does this matter?
  • How do we explain our parents’ behaviour and should we have to?

All of the above are good for helping to imagine others’ lived reality.

Learning points

  • People’s definition of ‘normal’ varies from person to person.
  • It can be difficult to explain the behaviour of someone with a mental illness, but should we have to explain it?
  • Mental illness does not mean someone is weak-minded or has a low IQ.

Duration of film

6 minutes, 54 seconds

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