Yes, it’s May, and that means it’s Mental Health Month, one of the times of the calendar year where we try and share stories, resources, and the life the voices of those struggling with their own mental health.
The content of the article is pretty accurate, but if you saw the article shared on Twitter, for example, with just the headline, what would your take-away be? Oh, the headline? This is what it said:
“If this happened to you in childhood, you may have mental health problems”
That headline seems to imply the exact opposite of the content of the article. The study they are reporting on, actually says the opposite of that. It implies that we really don’t know or understand all of the causes of mental health issues. For some, it may be tied to childhood trauma, for another person it may be tied to something else, or someone with a lot of childhood trauma didn’t grow up with mental health issues.
Since we know many, many people only read the headline and then either move on, or share based on the headline alone. I can’t help but wonder how many people are sharing something, assuming that it says that childhood trauma causes mental health issues, when the article actually says it’s more complicated than that.
Am I sad that there are fewer child abuse advocacy groups on Facebook overall? Sure. But, what makes me sadder is how many legitimate advocacy groups fell massively short of their duty to tell the truth to their followers. How many continued to share these theories well after they were disproved in some bizarre effort to show how much more they cared about children, while diverting attention and resources from real victims and organizations trying to help them.
So no. I don’t feel sorry for you if your page was taken down by Facebook for violating their terms of service around spreading disinformation. You owed real survivors, and the people who followed you to learn more about true child abuse stories, more than that. You are right about one thing, child abuse and child trafficking is an incredibly important issue. Spreading lies doesn’t help that message, it provides the rest of the world an excuse to ignore it. If you truly want to advocate for children, stick to the truth, or suffer the consequences.
These men will never get their day in court to read their victim statements, and be cheered on by the public, but given how uncomfortable we are with the subject matter, even if they did, would we welcome it the same way we did during the trial of Larry Nasser? If not, what does that say about us?
We often talk about the mental health care system being broken when it comes to treatment and patients, but I think this article opens our eyes a bit to the fact that it’s broken for providers too. Is it any wonder we have such a shortage of providers? Who would volunteer for this? We should be thankful for the people who do!
If you aren’t a big sports fan, please indulge me for a minute, because this story, while it takes place in the football world, isn’t really about football. It’s about stigma, and also blaming the victim. In a nutshell, Dak Prescott, the Quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys, gave an interview in which he talked about…