A Rage Blackout

Stop Telling People They “Need Help”

Unless you’re their family, friend, or medical professional, shut up.

Felicia C. Sullivan
6 min readNov 2, 2022

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Licensed from Adobe Stock // © igor_kell

I get a lot of ridiculous comments. Patronizing men who treat me like I’m a feeble child and they, my caring, well-meaning parent. Snarky women who feel big and bombastic when their words attempt to reduce my size, render me insignificant and small. Normally, I ignore strangers — especially if they attempt to armchair diagnose me or speak to the personal — because they’re strangers. People feel entitled to your life because they’ve read a sliver of it. People feel as if they know your whole when you’ve only shared parts of it.

People don’t know when to shut the fuck up.

If typing this slowly would make you read this slowly, trust me I’d write at a glacial pace. Because you’ve learned the vernacular of mental illness does not a medical professional make. Because the way someone behaves makes you uncomfortable or doesn’t align with your definition of normal does not an abnormal, unwell person make. You do not have the right to tell someone they “need help” unless you are their trained medical professional.

If actual professionals refuse to diagnose strangers on the internet, what emboldens you?

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Felicia C. Sullivan

Marketing Exec/Author. I build brands & tell stories. Hire me: t.ly/bEnd7 My Substack: https://feliciacsullivan.substack.com/ Brand & Content eBooks: t.ly/ZP5v