When I wrote about watching Athlete A last week, I mentioned the fact that the win-at-all-costs mentality of USA gymnastics blinded the organization to the fact that girls were being abused right under their noses, and played a role in … Continued
You may have seen someone talking about this on social media, or in an article online, or somewhere else. I’ve seen it in numerous places. The idea is that, right now, with a pandemic, racial justice issues, and everything else … Continued
Why do I see these two things as related? Well. let’s start with Sean Astin. It’s hard not to think that he has lived an amazingly privileged life. He’s been famous since he was a little kid, after growing up part of Hollywood royalty. If anyone has the means to shelter himself away from the harder topics of life, he’s one of those people. But he chooses not to, because he’s seen first hand what it is like to life with, and love someone with, mental health issues. That experience drives him to advocacy. He wants to share what it was like, and help others watching a mental health condition tear apart their own family.
In short, he gets it because he knows.
The same seems to be true when it comes to how serious COVID-19 really is. It seems to me there are a lot of people thinking it’s not very serious because well, no one they know has died or anything serious. 130,000 “other people” have died in the US. On the other hand, there are those of us who do know people who’ve died, or spent time hospitalized, tend to take it very seriously. Because we know. We’ve seen it. We’ve grieved because of it.
Think about it. Right now, this very second, you are reading this post because either you found the headline intriguing and clicked, or someone shared it with you and said you should read it, and you clicked. In both cases, you were persuaded by another person to do something. If you saw it on Facebook or other social media platform, there’s a Facebook algorithm watching you and trying to give you more stuff you like, to persuade you to keep coming back to Facebook, and you’re reading it on a device that you were persuaded to purchase by some other factor in your life.
Not to mention the fact that parents, teachers, or someone, somewhere, persuaded you to learn to read. You were persuaded, even manipulated, to go to school, study, become the sort of person who could get a well-enough paying job to own a piece of technology and pay for an internet connection, and all of that wound up with you, right here, right now.
You were “groomed” to do what you are doing right now. And yet, so many want to look at children, and make them responsible for knowing which persuasion is good for them and which isn’t.
I was abused by people who made the decision to abuse me. I did nothing to cause it, and there was no lack of purpose to which I needed to be directed. I was a little kid being beaten, and eventually molested, for years. My purpose in life was to be a little kid. There was nothing fair about it, there was no sense to be made of why it happened, it was the result of another person’s actions which happened to be directed toward me because I was there. And, I was there by chance. Not by divine interference, just random chance.
I saw this tweet yesterday shared by a few folks, and I was curious to find out what was going on: Yesterday, I found out that someone I followed and supported on social media has been using their platforms in … Continued
Let me tell you a story, a story that starts out the same way thousands of other stories start out in the US. I was in my early twenties, had just started seeing some of the real mental health struggles … Continued
I’ve seen many people in the Mental Health Advocacy arena talking about this new reality of people wearing masks in public places. The main concern seems to be losing something that is small, but can be invaluable, the connection that … Continued
So, how are we holding up after a month or more in COVID19 related lock-down? Clearly, it’s tough all the way around. I’m not going to sugar coat any of it, because it sucks. Whether you have gotten sick yourself, … Continued
As we live through fairly unprecedented times and find ourselves understanding why the old phrase “May you live in interesting times” was actually a curse, it has become commonplace for folks to say quite a number of things that seem … Continued