Korean dramas have captured Filipino hearts because of the various themes especially love stories that make us feel the kilig every time we see our favorite pairs. But the good thing about Korean drama is its versatility, tackling light to serious topics including stories as deep as mental health.
There are many types of mental disorders out there, and it takes a lot of effort to truly understand each one. But these dramas try to show us the stories of the people afflicted with the disease to help us, viewers, understand the illness a little more.
There are many dramas to choose from. But these are my personal picks. These dramas made me realize how important it is to understand a person suffering from these more-common-than-we-expect mental disorders.
1. IT’S OKAY TO NOT BE OKAY
Takes on Personality Disorder, Autism, Dissociative Identity Disorder among others
CAST: Kim Soo Hyun, Seo Ye Ji, Oh Jung Se, Park Kyu Young
Currently playing and is on its last episode. This is a healing drama involving Moon Gang Tae who works as a care taker for a psychiatric hospital. He also cares for his brother who has autism. Ko Mun Yeong, on the other hand, is a fairy tale writer who seems cold-hearted but only because of her Personality Disorder which stemmed from her childhood trauma. Together, they try to find healing while discovering love along the way.
Prepare to cry. Also, watch out for those unexpected twists!
2. IT’S OKAY THAT’S LOVE
This is such a great drama with a very surprising twist. It tells the story of psychiatrist Ji Hae Soo, who has extreme fear of intimacy, and her relationship with Jang Jae Yeol. Jae Yeol has schizophrenia and suffers severe hallucinations and compulsions, which was because of the abuse he experienced growing up. Park Soo Kwang, Jae Yeol’s friend has Tourette Syndrome but this does not stop him from being with his friend when he needs help.
Do Kyung Soo’s performance here was so good it will make you cry.
3. KILL ME, HEAL ME
Takes on Dissociative Identity Disorder
CAST: Ji Sung, Hwang Jung Eum, Park Seo Joon
Cha Do Hyun suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder. He is an heir to a large company which he cannot take over unless he becomes well. He has a total of seven personalities which he developed due to the trauma and abuse he experienced as a child. Psychiatrist Oh Ji Rin was tapped to help him heal through his disorder.
There are many crying moments in this drama but prepare to laugh as well. Ji Sung gave a wonderful performance. He was so good portraying the seven personalities, including a child and a girl!
4. CHEESE IN THE TRAP
Takes on Antisocial Personality Disorder
CAST: Park Hae Joon, Kim Go Eun, Seo Kang Joon, Lee Sung Kyung
Yoo Jung gives off a perfect personality, he is a good student, an athlete, and is very kind and accommodating. But the truth is, he suffers from antisocial personality disorder. Hong Seol is a smart and very diligent student who develops a relationship with Yoo Jung.
Prepare for a major second-lead syndrome with Baek In Ho (Seo Kang Joon)! Be prepared for that open-ended last scene.
5. MY MISTER
Takes on Depression
CAST: IU, Lee Sung Kyun
Ji An and Dong Hun have both suffered difficulties in life. Dong Hun found out his wife is having an affair, while Ji An is buried in debt while trying to care for her bedridden grandmother. They developed a strong friendship and helps each other go through hardships together.
Again, prepare to cry. IU’s portrayal of Ji An was perfect. This is her best portrayal so far.