Banter is the best remedy!

Banter explained by Stephen Fry.
Banter explained by Stephen Fry.

Weird and Wonderful: would love to help create a bantering and blissful world, by banishing negativity with with witt; by Discovering how it makes us healthy.

Stephen Fry was diagnosed with Bi -Polar disorder at 37. He had the ability to cope through all of his stages of the illness. Firstly, I feel knowing

what that would entail for someone with Bi – Polar.

What is Bi – Polar?

According to the psychologists diagnosis book of codes DSM-IV, (2000), DSM IV- TR Mood disorders (NCIB, 2008) Bi  – Polar has several mood types, but,  the core symptoms are “depression” and “mania”.


1. Loss of interest in activities, or, unwilling to participate in activities.

2. Oversleeping or Insomnia.

3. Low mood, generally – perhaps unwilling to communicate – or a feeling of unable to communicate – body posture signs: low shoulders, head may be low.

4. Increased weight gain or weight loss.

5. Feeling frustrated or agitated.

6. Feelings of Worthlessness or excessive guilt.

7. Reduced thoughts or possibly indecisiveness.

Depression symptoms could actually be seen in anyone. Making sure we see the symptoms means we have the ability to assist others in a cure.

Bi – Polar is complex than depression, due to the manic episodes.

Explaining Mania

A. Really long periods of elevated, or, expansive, or irratable mood. If over a week please seek a doctor’s advice.

B. Having irratable mood – there may be moments of the following:

  • Increased self – esteem or grandeur
  • Deacreased need for sleep – so someone would sleep for 3 hrs and have the energy or feel they have the energy to continue.
  • More talkative than usual or has pressure to talk
  • Flight of ideas
  • Distractablitiy
  • Increase in goal directed activity
  • May be excessive with certain things like money – a spending spree or even has the potential to become highly sexual.

These are important factors because not everyone can distinguish the difference of moods and depression  – then know – when banter is necessary to the health and wellbeings of individuals.

Social Interaction is therfore the most important stimulant for individuals with depression and banter is a Form of interaction. The best thing to do is not to fear Depression  – elevating the spirit of the person is better than the following:

  • Not Listening
  • pretending to avoid their subject choice.
  • Not spotting vital signs to share your concerns with them.

It is really important to notice when people with these symptoms, think positively. Stephen Fry Explains Bi – Polar, Independent ,(2006).

I feel through the merriment of Banter: your witt and charm will assist someone through their episode, or, could prevent them causing harm to themselves or others around them.

I remember reading books about rapport and feeling as though; stigma is here – but understanding something is more useful than going around thinking it will present itself straight away in this manner…..

Unfortunately – many mental health conditions do not present themselves by the book -as we as humans are complex individuals.  Hence the DSM-IV, (2000) has 3 and the recent DSM update, (2013) has four types of Bi – Polar.  There will always be changes and adaptions made in healthcare.

However, we cannot go around assuming health professionals are the only ones to uplift a person’s mood. We all have the ability to socially interact. It is whether or not our environment is fitting for it.

I feel being able to spot when individuals need help is more than just scratching the surface.  There are such things like life events which create increased stress levels as Holmes and Rahe, (1967) developed a questionnaire which helped them measure the stress of an individual that leads to many DSM – IV -TR mental health conditions, or, shows that the person with the condition has the inability to cope during these life events. Many hospitals use the questionnaire to discover if a person has been through too much stress.  Here are an example of some of the events on the list:

1. Divorce/ Separation

2. Death

3. Marriage

4. Prison

5. Retirement/Redundancy

6. New job/ New School

7. Moving

8. Birth

9. Financial constraints

10. Break ups with friends/ colleagues

Please feel free to take the test, or have other family memebers take the test: Stress questionnaire- Holmes And Rahe, (1967).

I feel, recognising that there may be certain things others cannot cope with, or the limitations of others assist with the boundaries and complications we all face. I feel we can only expect doctors to do a certain amount of work the rest of it is down to society.

I feel fear definitely based on not knowing. I feel also that in Social interaction is based on banter – joking, having fun, being genuinely up -beat; helps with people with a depression.

However, I feel there is another twist and turn to banter –

Banter:” the friendly and playful exchange of teasing remarks” – Oxford Dictionary

I feel banter could be used to mask a very important life event. Even though, many people would think that banter would be a good thing – it is – I love walking into places having wonderful remarks of witt, stirring in conversation; I feel that many do not realise that for many it is their only source of interaction.

“Fake Tan” – Dialogue at a tanning Salon:

Receptionist: Alright! The sun’s out today.

-Beaming with radiant glows.

Recptionist: Really, not necessary for me to be open then is it

– Sorry!

Receptionist: if it is so bright out there.

– No, I would like to be Beaming with radiant glow using the St.Tropez. There has been an increase in skin Cancer cases.

Receptionist: Right. Would you like the one you had last time or something a bit more orange.

– Orange…. ah…. like the sun! I see what you did there… quality!

Even if you did not see the banter…. it would be there with smiles and laughter.

I feel that in any setting it us appropriate to have laughter and joy. Stephen Fry proves that he used this as a coping mechanism and perhaps masked his problems. I feel, many are not able to socially interact because of the stigma attached to mental health. Being able to break that barrier with a joke or play helps. However, forgetting about life events means you could actually be harming an individual.

I feel Stephen Fry also proves that you cannot judge a person based on their intelligence.  Someone with a  mental health condition – even depression, still has the intellectual capacity – it is just temporarily put aside.

I feel fear means people lack the ability to help a person even improve the quality of their life. A better quality of life improves mental health Quality of life improvements in mental health conditions, improving health and Wellbeing, (2015)

To conclude, I feel social interaction and banter help with mental wellbeing.

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