Fredi Magazine Spring 2016 / Volume 2 Issue 1 - Page 43

TimElEss ClassiCs URban ChiC n C o up o 672 Chrislea Road, Woodbridge, Ontario • Tel 289 268 0020 50 0 At the end of day, sick or weak there is no difference, all there is, is someone in need be it a loved one, a friend, or a co-worker calling out to us in desperation, looking for repose, for relief, or for reprieve. If we take to heart the points above we can dispel the disbelief that numbs our impulse to support those suffering. How should we respond? What should we do? Well imagine for a moment your neighbour has just lost his wife. How would you treat him? Would it matter how she died ould you seek to find blame in his loss ould you question his suffering Would you set a deadline to his grieving? Not likely. What is likely, is that you would support him in any way you could. You would Pr es e $ on nt a thi m sa C in. $ d an an 2 an y no ,50 d r o 0 e t Ex the be or ce d i pi r re of co er ve s J fe m ( b a $ ul r o bin ef 50 o y r 31 di ed re 0 c , 2 sco w ta ou 01 u ith xe po s) 6. nts . n . Where ignorance guides our understanding of mental health concerns with acquaintances, vanity guides us when dealing with our loved ones who suffer. Simply put, we do not want to believe that our loved ones are suffering and that we are unable to help them. This realization makes us feel powerless and scared and so often, we ignore it and deny it. We do not want others to judge them or us! What does it say that my wife is depressed or my child plagued by anxieties? Our own assumptions and fears are at play here, as are our own conceptions of the stigmas surrounding mental health and addiction. Vanity inclines us to hide away what is absolutely in need of light. The message to the public must emphatically be the following: While it may be painful to acknowledge that a loved one is suffering from mental illness or addiction, the road to recovery is only lit by extinguishing denial. Is this painful for us es eing compassionate, by definition, means to suffer with someone and to share in his or her suffering for there is no other route to wellness. EClECTiC mix because naturally, we want to reassure them that everything is going to be fine and after all, we too have suffered as they do now and we overcame it, so we think. This erroneous judgement is not malice, just ignorance. We dismiss because we have failed to properly appreciate the varying degrees of severity with which mental illness and addiction afflict certain individuals. hen dealing with mental health and addiction issues we often make powerful assumptions that are nearly always incorrect. These are the assumptions that must be adjusted. In no uncertain terms, the message to the public must be the following: When dealing with someone with mental health concerns ASSUME that you do NOT fully understand what they are going through. This approach will ensure that what you don’t know, does not impede what you choose to do on behalf of those suffering. In short, this approach will incline you to do everything you possibly can. sOPhisTiCaTEd ElEganCE 4.5 X 9.5 ad_Layout 1 20/04/2016 11:17 AM Page 1 fredi spring 2016 • 43