Mental Health Needs to be a Nationwide Discussion

18 Dec

I ran across this very powerful article written by Liza Long for Gawker.

Although I have avoided most coverage on the tragedy in Connecticut, I have spent a great amount of time thinking about the state of mental health care in the United States. This piece address both the importance of having access to health care needs, but also the difficulties of a parent dealing with a violent child.

I highly recommend reading not only the article, but some of the 900+ comments.


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2 responses to “Mental Health Needs to be a Nationwide Discussion

  1. Stefany Cameron

    December 20, 2012 at 1:02 am

    I too have been following this story on gawkwer. On average, the comments revealed that we need an improvement in the system for these parents and kids. (…Surprise) In skimming the comments; the system would be compasasionate, resourceful and able to identify and manage the truly dangerous until they become stabilized. Sounds great!
    So my question to you is, what systems do other countries have in place for mental health -or what can we gather and utilize to create a better system here? I realize funding is an ongoing major issue, but what about novel and successful delivery systems elsewhere?

  2. Murfomurf

    December 26, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    Like you, I was very moved by Liza Long’s blog post and I also just did a blog post about whole communities becoming more open about mental health! With the loss of institutional care (even part-time) for people who are not containable in a normal family environment, there is increasing despair among parents and carers that they may become the victims of violent outbursts. While forced to care for family members whom they find frightening in a society that frowns on sedation, these adults are themselves being maintained in a miserable straitjacket of self sacrifice. No wonder so many parents and carers have mental illness themselves- careers forfeited to care for a thankless relative, extremely lowered incomes from living on government handouts or small private pensions, loss of contact with their peers and often wider family as well (who are scared or repelled by the thought of the unusual or violent offspring or elderly parent), an inability to get professional help or take a single holiday can all drive people to despair, even suicide. We really do need wider community concern, involvement and responsibility in mental health, but I’m not sure that current approaches are even rippling the surface of this deep need.


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