Mental Health Peer Support Booklet – Part II
In last Monday’s post, you read the words of Melanie Knapp as she outlined her concept and her hopes for a Peer Support Booklet for inpatients of the psychiatric care unit of our local hospital. Her desire is for a resource to be made available to help people move through the experience of hospitalization with greater ease and hopefully with more positive results.
Her words really rang the bell of pro-activism for me and I was happy to rally ’round that bell. The following paragraph from Monday’s post is an example of those powerful words:
“When people give up it makes me very sad. At times I feel pain in my heart and confusion at the archaic way that people are treated. Some of the things included in this booklet will be optimistic ideas for wellness, empathy for frustrations, and sharing of memories of hospital stays. There are a number of contributors to this booklet, all joining in for their own reasons, but generally speaking, they want people to have opportunities to regain the capacity to function well.” ~ Melanie J. Knapp, B.A.Psych.
I was honored to be invited to be a contributor for this initiative. I asked if my article could be published in advance here on my blog and was given the green light.
So here now is the first half of my contribution.
“I have ADHD. And I’m always explaining to people what that means for an adult. That wouldn’t be so bad, if I were just being asked about it, but I’m often defending myself and those like me who have Adult Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder.”
“I’m not tired of doing this, well, not yet. But I can see the possibility of that time coming. It wears a little thin. Questions like “Aren’t those drugs addictive?” and “Isn’t Adult ADHD just a created problem to help sell drugs?” reveal opinions that are considered to be fact by people who consider themselves to be normal. I’ve got news for them, normal is just another way of saying your mental health issues either haven’t been diagnosed yet or just don’t have a name. But they’re there. I refer to so called “normal” people as “normans.” These are the people who suffer from “Delusions of Normalcy.”
“The difference between the normans and those of us who have diagnosed mental health problems is simply that they can’t suffer from stigmatization until they realize they are different. We already know we are different. But why should we suffer simply because we are more self aware then they are?
“Seriously, should being deluded enough to think of oneself as normal mean that you are better than others? Should being rude enough to call attention to others so called deficiencies not be considered a mental disorder in itself? “Hi, I’m Norman and I suffer from C.I., Chronic Ignorance.”
We’re going to leave off here for now. I hate cliffhangers too, so I’ll tell you that there’s only one more paragraph about the source of stigma, then more on dealing with it.
Stay tuned for the balance of this article on Friday. And for more of Melanie Knapp’s insight into psychology, check out her blog at Psychology Discussions.
Babcock, K. (2012). Mental Health Peer Support Booklet – Part II. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 14, 2016, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/adhd-man/2012/08/mental-health-peer-support-booklet-part-ii/