Shrouded in myths and stifled by silence, mental illness has remained a target of stigma for eternity. Meanwhile, mental conditions are spanning nationwide, bringing along unresolved taboos.

Today, we are zooming in on the unseen conditions disrupting SDG 3.

Mental health is a universal right. Such is the theme of this year’s World Mental Health Day. UN Secretary-General António Guterres stated in this regard:

“Mental health is vital to humanity, allowing us to lead fulfilling lives and contribute fully to our communities. Yet one in eight people around the world lives with a mental health condition, with women and young people being disproportionately impacted. Three in four people affected receive inadequate treatment — or no care at all. And many face stigma and discrimination.”

Yet, the latter two thrive.

A survey done by VIVE shows that 87% of people in Denmark struggling with a mental illness do not feel comfortable talking about it due to negative experiences. For some context, the Danish mental health organization Bedre Psykiatri found that one in ten Danes struggles with a mental condition. That amounts to about 580,000 people.

Still, taboo spreads in accordance.

There remains a significant lack of knowledge regarding mental disorders. Regardless, this does not count for the origins of stigmatization.

A Dual Triad

ONE OF US – a national anti-stigma program in Denmark – seeks to reduce stigma related to mental disorders in Denmark.

Specifically, they seek to eliminate silence, doubt, and taboo surrounding mental illness.

Be that as it may, these arise from another triad of facets. That is the lack of knowledge regarding mental health illness, negative attitudes toward mental illness – such as prejudices, and finally, showing behavior such as exclusion and rejection.

Now, turn ignorance into understanding, prejudice into interest, and rejection into conversation; it only demands that we talk about mental health.

Take Action: Break the Taboo

Eliminating stigma is not only a matter of empathy; it calls for action.

Talk it out. Write it down. Tear down the taboo. Take action – for yourself.

Volunteer organizations may apply for funding from The Danish Health Authority to include and involve people with mental conditions and their relatives. The application deadline is November 17, 2023.

If you or anyone you know struggles with a non-physical disorder, there is help close at hand. Some are listed below.

Sind Ungdom (for youth):

Hotline: 70 22 28 12

Website: Sind Ungdom


Hotline: 70 201 201

Website: Livslinien


Hotline: 42 46 58 88

Website: Depressionslinjen


Hotline: 39 25 25 25

Website: Psykiatrifonden

SletDet (for help with online harassment and bullying):

Hotline: 70 20 77 88

Website: SletDet