In the past few decades, I’ve seen some really wonderful changes. One of these wonderful changes is a real effort to try to be all inclusive. Inclusivity is a wonderful thing to strive for. However, some are still left out. How can we ensure that there is no one left behind?Tweet
In the past few decades, I’ve seen some really wonderful changes. One of these wonderful changes is a real effort to try to be all inclusive. Inclusivity is a wonderful thing to strive for.
However, I feel as if, with the advent of social media, everyone’s group has – ironically – been inadvertently working against one another. With that said, how do we make it so there’s no one left behind?
Have we all become sworn enemies? Of course not. But what I feel has happened is that the space for inclusiveness has become oversaturated with one cause or another. Fortunately, it’s a bit like 100 people asking one person 100 questions at once, you can’t possibly answer everyone’s request.
While picking up the torch in a group and fighting for what you believe in is wonderful and admirable, I feel like we all must scream to get the right people to notice. Hello, politicians. I mean, there are so many groups, doing so many wonderful things… how can they be heard?
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In the niche of mental–health advocation, the struggle is no different. But with there being so much, how do we manage our way around at all?
I would argue that the best way through it is to recognize that every advocacy group is born out of a passion and a personal experience that usually comes from pain.
Therefore, I feel like we could get more bang for a buck if we united around our commonalities and didn’t focus so much on the airtime that we’re not getting. Our commonalities of course being humans who suffer from varying degrees of disparity, hatred and pain.
Now, with all that said, I wanted to bring up a group that is often forgotten. What group am I speaking of? Those who have played a supportive role in the lives of someone with mental illness.
Supporting those who support loved ones with mental illness
Sadly, this is an area where our partners, our families, and friends often are a discarded piece of the puzzle.
While I realize that this may not be popular with some people who advocate for mental health, it is nonetheless an important topic to raise. Why? Because those who support us, let’s be honest, have to play the role of the supporter and do so with a smile sometimes. This can leave them in a state of walking on eggshells because of agitation that seemingly comes out of nowhere or becoming fearful for their lives as the agitation turns into screaming. Whether intentional or not, disorder driven or not, for some, the consequences are the same.
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The acts of the traumatized can effectively traumatize those around them. It’s time to call on more robust help for them.
As an example, I would recommend a service like Al-Anon, a program designed to support families through a family member’s alcoholism. Essentially, the program acknowledges that, alcoholism is a disease, family members suffer and thus need support.
Therefore, we need to start to include the mentally ill person’s support team by creating and organizing groups that are specifically designed to deal with the fallout that comes with certain mental health disorders. Dealing with this fallout may include mental health professionals and or peer support.
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Regardless of who we are as people, I believe that it is a society’s responsibility to minimize the mental health consequences for everyone. And yes, this includes the sufferer and their support (human beings).