Memes and mental health have more in common than you’d think.
The crux of online culture in today’s day and age are undoubtedly memes. Pictures, videos, and text that would have been unintelligible was it not for context we grant them; and perhaps even in the presence of these. Funny memes are the ultimate form of Millennial to Gen Z expression, and have encompassed every genre of art within a matter of KBs.
Make Memes, Not War – Mark Twain
It is said that without pain, there is no art, and it seems true enough when it comes to any semi-experienced meme’s favourite kind: existentialist memes. Dark and socially taboo topics such as depression and suicidal can now be expressed with the simplicity of a couple of clicks. Humour, everybody and their uncles’ favourite coping mechanism, allows for a sufficient enough dampener to reference almost any subject without coming off as particularly offensive or inconsiderate: most of the time.
This allows for an exploration of those sentiments that were previously reserved for Russian authors and one too many glasses of whisky on the more untimely nights. “Kermitting suicide” “being just the tip of the iceberg, this negativity that stems from a rather distraught place is rather common for the extremity of its nature- and a disturbing cause might be that people simply did not have the means of communicating them before.
An even more unsettling thought may be that this is a sign of the times. Our times.
Depression could soon be one of the most common disorders to be suffered globally, right up there with common colds and the flu, according to statistics. Meanwhile, the world is caught up between global awareness like we have never seen before, and more than faint lingerings of unaware and oppressive ideals that are best left to the past. The pent up angst and agony that was once associated with the writer who spent time in Siberian concentration camps has now become a commonplace expression: simply because it may be the healthiest way to cope and the easiest one to communicate.
For once, let’s explore the wild possibility that maybe the fault is not the victim’s, but rather a much larger one that the world needs to take on together. For once, let us attempt to understand the smaller picture rather than the bigger one, understand the one that has remained neglected for far too long as we’ve gotten more and more caught up in the material aspects of social constructs. The picture that found the only way it could validate itself and was powerful enough to form its own unit of communication.
Read about family: Letters To A Father From The Future