Teaching Responsibility and addressing Stigma

 

 

Resonse - Ability: how ell do we teach thisToday, I need to talk about news articles like this one, which discusses how the public gets a skewed perception of mental illness if they only watch (and believe!) that all mentally ill people are criminals. Accepting stigma like this shows a lack of empathy, coupled with a laziness which lulls people to not think for themselves.

There was something else, though, that caught my attention in this article; namely, lawyers who defend the mentally ill by raising the insanity defense.

Teaching Responsibility and Addressing Stigma

Resonse - Ability: how ell do we teach thisToday, I need to talk about news articles like this one, which discusses how the public gets a skewed perception of mental illness if they only watch (and believe!) that all mentally ill people are criminals. Accepting stigma like this shows a lack of empathy, coupled with a laziness which lulls people to not think for themselves.

There was something else, though, that caught my attention in this article; namely, lawyers who defend the mentally ill by raising the insanity defense.

Teach the Children Well

teach the children well:  disabilities are just another perspective on life

I came across a site that presents a viable way to lessen the stigma towards people with disability as the individuals involved teach children.

As we all know children are inherently accepting of others regardless of their differences.  All they are looking for is a friend (and, it doesn’t matter what their skin color is, their gender, disability, etc).

And, perhaps, we can learn from the children, namely to strive to make friends, build relationships.  Looking at our similarities, and not our differences, will go a very long way to help us see the person behind each disability.

Teaching Responsibility

 

 

 

Resonse - Ability:  how ell do we teach thisToday, I need to talk about news articles like this one, which discusses how the public gets a skewed perception of mental illness if they only watch (and believe!) that all mentally ill people are criminals. Accepting stigma like this shows a lack of empathy, coupled with a laziness which lulls people to not think for themselves.

There was something else, though, that caught my attention in this article; namely, lawyers who defend the mentally ill by raising the insanity defense.

Your Personal Values of Faith are Important as a Caregiver

“Your beliefs don’t make you a better person, your behavior does.”

personal values of faithPersonal values are important, but…

The person who tells you that he is kind to all, then who quickly turns around in the check out line to give a piece of his mind to that mother who can’t control her kid as he pushed the cart into his ankles…is just one of many examples of the unnecessary stress we have because our lifestyles don’t mirror our beliefs.

While it may be natural to say, we all do it, it becomes a big problem when you are a caregiver trying to assist your clients towards better lifestyles.  In my previous post, I gave the example of a group advocating for their clients to define their own goals, but with the unspoken caveat of as long as it is ‘doing it my way’.

So, just how is your value system influencing those people in your charge?

Reverse Stigma: I am in Process

Stigma destroys ANYONE in its pathI see Stigma every day.  It is seen in a perturbed look at someone with a mental illness.  It is seen by two people with disabilities being co-dependent upon one another.  It is seen by the stares at those who have great difficulties walking or talking incoherently.

Stigma isn’t only, though, ‘out there’.  It can be found in each one of us as a type of ‘reverse stigma’.  Let me explain:

Letting Go of Someday

Today, I am posting an article by Vonda J. Sines.  Her reflection on living with Chrohn’s disease is brutally frank, and becomes a clarion call to ALL individuals to reconsider their outlook on life because of their disability.  Yet, there is something else in this story that speaks of HOPE even in the midst of letting go.  If you are struggling in your life with an issue like this, why not make a commitment today and seek support for yourself.

 

Letting Go of Someday

Vonda J. Sines

Be Different. Stand Out. Fight Stigma.

Be Different Stand out Fight StigmaThis month is Mental Health Awareness month. Too often, I have found that we take less thought of our mental acuity than on our physical bodies, being more inclined, for example, to visit our family physician for a broken arm, but dismiss the amount of stress overload we are having at work.

Be Different. Stand Out. Fight Stigma.

Be Different Stand out Fight StigmaThis month is Mental Health Awareness month. Too often, I have found that we take less thought of our mental acuity than on our physical bodies, being more inclined, for example, to visit our family physician for a broken arm, but dismiss the amount of stress overload we are having at work.

The Hope of Glory

to whom God willed to make known

what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Colossians 1:27 NASB

skyscape pic that I tookTo close out this month that I have devoted to people with Autism, I thought it fitting to end with a scriptural reflection which I hope is both challenging as it is inspirational.

Robert Kennedy Jr had it Wrong

The brain is gone (?)

April is Autism Awareness MonthThis statement by Robert Kennedy Jr was his description of people who have autism. Fortunately, some people have spoken out on this to set the record straight.

You can too.

The context of this statement came during his attempt to campaign against a bill that would make it harder for parents to opt out of vaccinations. His position is due, at least, in part, to his view the significant correlation between vaccinations and autism. (two things to note here though: first that correlation is STILL in question, and that ‘brain dead’ is not a characteristic of autism)

The Foundation to Support

Do You Have Support as You Move ForwardSupport is astronomically vital to our well-being.

Without others cheering us along, or providing some sound counsel on our own ideas, we are not going to be as productive as we could have been.

 

 

Basically, we really do need one another.

Today, I want to turn the corner –slightly, in order to talk with you about how one’s faith plays into this whole idea of support. I will be coming at this from the Christian faith perspective and along the way, I hope to challenge you to reassess your own faith.

The Importance of Support

SUPPORTOver the years I have had opportunity to lead life skill groups for individuals with disabilities.  And, while there are a lot of different techniques that can be learned there is one thing that continues to so essential for ANYONE to succeed.

 

Watch this short clip about AMY and her recovery from mental illness, paying particular attention at 1:30 minutes

 

Did you catch that one thing NECESSARY for success:  having someone believe in you! Please note in the picture to this post that the only thing missing in Support is You.  Namely, there is support available to you, but it will not be handed to you on a silver platter.  You will have to invest time and dedication to make it come about.   

Helping People with Anxiety Set Goals

SMART Goals Created my MKDOne of my most popular downloads is my S.M.A.R.T. Goal worksheet.  Now, I would like to elaborate on the steps to reaching  S.M.A.R.T. Goal as it pertains to someone who has an anxiety disorder.

Helping people with anxiety set goals can be daunting, but not impossible. And, while the details will be different from one person to another, and from one disability to another, the general principles will be the same to all.  (If you have questions on how to adapt S.M.A.R.T. Goals to your lifestyle, contact me and I will do my best to help you.)

A Prayer for Those who Work with the Disabled

Plug into the Power of Prayer (Self created)As I was driving to work the other day  I was more aware of the wide disconnect between some people’s faith and their lifestyles when working with people who have disabilities, which translates into weakened relationships with those whom they serve.

And, as I drove I began to formulate a prayer for us who work with the disabled, a prayer that can be very powerful.

Dealing with Delusions

(NOTE: what I am describing is not intended to be used for someone who is having delusions that would put anyone in physical danger!)

 

Delusions:  a strong belief that is not supported with rational thinkingTalking with people who have delusional thinking can be difficult when you start discussing areas that you know are ‘hot spots’ for them, which makes it akin to walking through a mine field.   Please remember –let it be burned into your mind- that sheer reasoning with them regarding the absurdity of their convictions will not convince them to change their belief because this is not about educating them. Mental Illness does not mean stupid! Far from it. Mental illness is -in the vernacular- a broken brain.

Replacing Your Fear with Freedom

The Word of God is Applicable to us Today

Self Created:  "Freedom necessitates dealing with our FearsThe other day I was thinking of Moses and the Israelites facing the Red Sea while the hordes of Egyptians descended upon them to kill them.  And while the Israelites feared for their lives, Moses told them to stand still and see how God was going to save them.  You can read the full account of this at Exodus 14