no measure of health…

it is no measure of health...

I’ve been lucky that some people think I have something interesting to say about the thing we call “mental health” and been invited to interviewed for documentary and research projects.

This same question, or a version of it keeps cropping up …

‘So what do you think causes mental illness?’

to which I have a simple response – a four letter word


Life can place unbearable pressures upon us, society – this society we have created – can place unbearable pressure upon us and offer us little support  in living with that.

What we call “mental health services” are, by and large little more than “drug dispensing services”

and have become so complicated and convoluted and stuck in their own mess that they are indistinguishable from teh world described in the pages of a Kafka novel.

to have much hope of finding help we met subjugate ourselves to being deemed not human but a  “case” so that we can have  appointed an advocate – a “case worker” – to fight our cause as we attempt to navigate blindfold through the inter profession, inter agency game of pass-the- parcel that is the very real Kafkaesque nightmare many experience.

There is not much offered designed to help a person make sense of the  crushing pain, the energy sapping oppression, or debilitating  confusion  that a person trapped in this feels daily in every cell of their body.

Being well adjusted to a society that seems designed more to sap people of their energy, vitality and humanity than designed to offer us ways to live the rich, fulfilling lives we are capable of is no measure of health.

Getting back to where we were – hanging in there, just coping, numbed out, dumbed down and zombie-fied on drugs so we can bear a few more days, months, years till we collapse exhausted again – that is no measure of health.

Yet, in a system seemingly designed to make humans ill, and seemingly intent on having us believe we have no hope but to succumb to inevitability, propaganda and brainwashing,  every person who does find their way, every one of us who does find our own “recovery” [or whatever word we choose for ourself] is an individual act of rebellion, personal act of resistance and an act that changes not one life but the whole system.

Living can be reduced to taking enough drugs to numb ourselves enough to put up with an endless stream of lifecrap.

But the universe – like any other lightbulb- will not change just because we want it to.

Yet I can change the whole universe by making many small changes in that part of it that I call “me” and by enacting today and in my own small way, the future I want today. With every one of us who does that we  change the world one person at a time and when we do that and share our experience with others we encourage others to give themselves  permission to do likewise.

So: adjust to a profoundly sick society?  or rebel, resist and live your life  your way?

Choose wisely.


About recoverynetwork:Toronto

We believe people can and do recover from "mental illness" - because we are living it. We believe in the power of supporting each other: learning from and with each other. You are welcome to join us..
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