In honor of Mental Health Awareness week, this is a mental health inspired edition of the Like, Love, Loathe linky. Let’s get to it!
Stephen Fry. Okay, so I would have loved to have lots and lots of loves to give out, but inkeeping with structure of this linky I will like him (even though I totally love him!) Ever since the documentaries in which Fry talks candidly of his troubled times as a youth, and his lifelong battle with Bipolar Disorder. So raw and touching, it was a gateway for millions to be able to speak out about their own experiences. Mental Illness cares not for class or gender or privileged, and as a man whose life has afforded him much wealth and success, he is a perfect example of this. His humility and willingness to share his life with us has made him not only a favourite of the people, but one of the most prolific celebrity mental health advocates of our time.
All the lovely peeps and tweeps who have got stuck in writing articles, participating in linkys (there is still time to link up to ours here). I’ve seen so many tweets, facebook status’, instagram pictures and just a general attitude of participation from everyone I’ve spoken to this week. I’ve read some heartbreaking yet inspiring stories, and been completely humbled by the willingness of others to use their struggle as an example to others, not only of how to cope, but how even the best of us stop coping for a while, stop functioning, but that there is an end to it. We all need to continue to speak out so that others who find themselves in the same position will know that it’s ok to tackle the essentials such as asking for help, something which can be much harder than it sounds, and perhaps avoid some of the harrowing experiences that some have gone through.
Thanks Stephen for the great intro. Yes indeed, I do not have time for those who would shame people who are ill. From discrimination in jobs, to doubting the ability of others to parent, to simply pouring scorn on those who suffer. ‘Pull your socks up’ ‘smile it might never happen’ ‘just cheer up will you’ are remarks at the less severe remarks people with mental health issues will hear. I do not wish to perpetuate stereotypes by listing anything more insulting or degrading. You can no more ‘snap out of’ a mental illness as you can a broken leg. Your brain is one of the most complex organs in your body, and it gets sick like any other. Lets hope that by speaking up, this sort of discrimination and shaming behaviour will become just unacceptable as racism or any other form of prejudice.
Thanks to all who have done their part this week. I’ve been bowled over my peoples willingness to speak out. This gives me hope that together we can smash mental health stigma! Who’s with me?