It’s one sleep since the end of Mental Health Awareness Month and the beginning of Pride Month. As we transition between these two important markers, I’m remembering all the times I’ve heard comments from people to the effect of, “I don’t care what they have/what they are. I just don’t need to know about it.”
It’s okay, this “do whatever you want in the privacy of your own home” approach. It’s miles better than the “lynch anyone who is different” approach. But it’s a viewpoint that comes from a place of never having had to fight against exclusion or discrimination. And my quick response has become this: put yourself in our shoes. Imagine what it’s like to have to hide who you are, every day, everywhere, because you’ll be punished by some sector of society if you don’t. That’s why we talk about mental health in May and LGBTQ rights in June every year. We’re not oversharing and being show-boaty. We’re fighting for our lives. That’s not a dramatic overstatement.
A few spin-off thoughts and somewhat-related notes.
My nephew alerted me to the fact that one day, we may be going on a magic mushroom trip to cure depression, a treatment I’m more than willing to be a study participant for, in case anyone is looking for guinea pigs.
I’m coming out soon about having depression and fronting as a high-functioning adult in a very big publication that will possibly be read by every potential future employer of mine, so we’ll see how that goes. I’ll share it on June 22.
Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about how to help children who are in vulnerable situations – troubled families with dysfunctional parents. If we don’t help the kids, they become adults who, best case, develop resilience (after a ton of work), or, worst case, major health issues (and never live their best lives), or sometimes both. The Hart family murders has been a trigger for me, because it was preventable. I don’t have the answers, but I’d like to hear ideas and anecdotes from anyone who has experience in the space of working with children from troubled families, and how to help them without necessarily removing them from their family.
How ‘bout that gene testing? Is 23andMe setting itself up to be a next-wave health diagnosis and treatment tool? It’s certainly been a discovery process for me, once I uploaded the raw data from their site into a couple of third-party sites. This is where it gets parsed into readable reports with much more info than what you get in the canned 23andMe reports. And this is where I discovered I have a double mutation of the MTHFR gene, something that’s linked to — drumroll, please – anxiety and depression. My learning from that, including treatment protocols, will be part of a future blog post.
My final thought. We’re in fraught times in parts of the world. Lead with love. Even when you want to punch someone. I bought slippers to remind myself.
Your thoughts? I don’t like to have the last word.