"Mentally ill.” It was as if someone had just very gently placed a bomb in my lap. I didn’t know how to dismantle it, but I knew no matter how scary it might be, there was a key inside it - a key to all the hard days and locked doors and crying jags.
“Haven’t you ever heard those words?”
“Yes,” I said meekly… I had used the word “crazy” but never “mentally ill.” “Crazy” didn’t seem so bad. “Crazy” was a simple word like “shy” or “tired” or “sad."
Alice Sebold, The Almost Moon