The horrifying events of this last week have left the whole of Europe reeling, but those affected by , or involved in Mental Health Issues are once again finding themselves under attack.
I want to take a look – not at the Germanwings case, which is ongoing and, lets face it, we don’t really have a clue, but rather at the ‘Mental Health Story’ as a whole; now in 2015, where are we in regards to equality, fighting stigma, employment rights and of course, health care.
My one major concern is that of the media’s ability to label and whitewash at will. If you actually believed everything you read in the newspapers (and sadly, many do) then you would be highly afraid of coming into contact with anyone suffering with mental health issues.
As someone who has lived with depression for my whole life, I know that we are a fascinating bunch of oddballs; a little unreliable, maybe; slightly obsessive in some areas, or simply downright unsociable in others. We are workers, bosses, parents and children.
Mental Health is non-discriminatory and cares not a jot if you are male or female or other, whether you are Rich or Poor (a great misunderstanding, this one: all ‘Mentals’ are homeless, dirty and liable to murder!!)
There are an abundance of Poor Mental Health suffers in the world of the Rich and Famous, in Royal Families, the world of Politics, and yes, even in the Airline Industry.
People with depression and anxiety are teachers in schools – pupils in school – parents of pupils in school as well as those who you turn to for support in your life: Doctors, dentists, police officers, fire crews; all of these ‘responsible’ jobs can harbour mental health struggles, and yes – you DO know someone with Mental Health Problems. Very possibly you are sitting next to one right now. Scary? It shouldn’t be. Seriously – they are more scared of LIFE than you are of them, and they are really far too busy being ‘normal’ enough to get some shopping, turn up at work and staying relatively well presented to be interested in any exotic ‘knife wielding mass murdering escapades’.
Sad to say but being a bit mental just isn’t that exciting. Actually it’s pretty exhausting and features a lot of cancelled dates and early nights. (Or for the insomniacs, cancelled dates and long, long, long boring nights).
For those of you who feel you have no clue about the reality of Mental Health Problems here are a few links that you may find useful: