Say you are mentally ill, or an advocate for the mentally ill, or are related to or friends with someone who has a mental illness. You have been reading this blog. Maybe you agree with some of its points, or benefit from the thoughts offered here.
What would I have you do?
I don’t want anyone to try to start a revolution. A new paradigm may be on its way for mental health treatment, but I am not asking people to hold up signs, boycott clinics, confront healthcare professionals, or call Senators.
I don’t want you to do nothing, however. If you read this blog, simply digest it, and go on with things, that would make me feel like this effort is being wasted.
What I would suggest is that I have been presenting people with some new perspectives about what it’s like to have schizophrenia, and how the greater modern reality involves and reflects aspects of mental illness.
I would ask that people who are not mentally ill try to resist the urge to categorize schizophrenic people as being existentially inferior or completely disabled. Their abilities might surprise you.
I would also request that schizophrenics and other mentally ill people realize that they may have hidden resources, and therefore they should not give up and become consumers in every way.
I am really asking for some slight changes in attitude– changes that would only benefit people by raising their levels of consciousness.
“What To Do With Words”
A Poem By Thomas Park
You could pretend they were warm
And wear them
(The approaching cold would feel only sharper)
Use them like a bullhorn, try
To herd people
(They are like cats, and would go their own way)
Words could indicate objects
(Which you would miss when they were gone)
I could tell your story
(But it might make you feel uncomfortable)
Maybe I will play an old record,
And drag you down with me
Words best suggest, without proving
Admit to frustration, without resolving
Words connect us, like strained nerves
Narrate human effort