Before I start; some notes:
- Some mental health issues are due to brain damage or other physical causes – this article does not apply to those.
- The commentary in this article uses an example of a man who drowned a cat and is not aimed at that specific case – the article is general in nature.
- The article will be confronting to some people, especially those of a ‘politically correct’ nature.
- Widespread poor results and care in the mental health field is a contributing factor to this ‘excuses issue’. Not only has a retired professor of psychology friend confirmed the widespread low incidence of deep results, I have come across large numbers of people (clients and more) who complain about it. Often, these latter say that only people who have personally had experience of mental health issues truly understand how to help.
- I suffered from severe mental health issues earlier in my life – when a child and into adulthood.
- Today I help my clients achieve significant results. So much so, that I count mental health professionals among my clients. I am planning a series of articles about how I can, and do, help my ‘competitors’ – it is important that people get help which works and if that be by a ‘competitor’, then that is a good outcome.
- Am I a proud git? No. In fact, humility is a cornerstone principle to mental freedom.
Many in society, including myself, are fed up with individuals and organisations who use mental health issues to ‘excuse’ evil. ‘Mitigating factors’ is a term often used.
Unfortunately, using mental health issues in this way also tends to increase the stigma surrounding mental health. Often it is not true.
Today I read about a man who is said to have bipolar/manic depression who killed his lodger’s cat by drowning it, despite professing a liking for his own cat:
In the man’s defence, mental health history was brought up, along with a traffic accident which is said to have exacerbated the mental issues.
Clearly, we cannot know the true and full facts of the case and thus cannot comment on this man specifically. We do not know for example whether ‘mental health experts’ who have assessed the man, and the effects of the accident, have got it right (so many get it wrong). I do however find the fact that the man was able to express liking for his own cat disturbing in context of this actions. I expect that the man’s professed attitude will undermine the confidence of people who consider that he seemed able to feel some compassion and knowledge of good (for his own cat), yet chose to discriminate against the lodger’s cat. Unfortunately, many people in society further stigmatize people with mental health issues as a result of stories like this.
Moving on to the point of my article…
Years ago, when I had severe mental health issues, one of the keys to my freedom was taking personal responsibility for my actions, thinking and mental health. I had been to see lots of people with white coats and certificates on the walls – psychologists, psychiatrists, counsellors etc without much success. In fact, being an intuitive fellow I noticed that many of these ‘professionals’ despaired of being able to help me, though they tried to cover it up. I was also prescribed mood altering drugs etc, however I did not take them partly because I knew the chemicals would simply mask my symptoms and hinder healing and recovery.
I got well. Very well. So much so that I now have mental health professionals among my clients.
I paid a big price. Emotionally, spiritually, psychologically.
Among other things, I decided to seek truth and not my own opinion. I was determined to find a solution.
Years later, I discovered that there is a neuroscience term for part of what happened to my mind during recovery from mental health issues – neuroplasticity.
Today, I consider myself to be one of the most fortunate people in the world and am immensely grateful for the suffering I once experienced. Without it I would have never known the deep joy, peace and wisdom that I enjoy today.
From this standpoint then – a place of knowing that serious mental health issues can be overcome – I have a general tendency to dislike mental health issues being used as excuses for evil or bad behaviour.
We need to own up to and ‘own’ our shit before we can change.
I was an evil little shit (though I never hurt a cat in my life). In recovery, I did NOT make excuses; I got well instead.
Today, I have deep empathy, and in the case of animals, can even ‘communicate’ and heal their minds of deep trauma too. People have noticed. Yes, evidence and results tell.
So if you are in the habit of using mental health issues as an excuse – for yourself, or others – it might be time to stop, and get a life.
Tough words yes, but then, I have been there, and done it.
I’m not some ‘goody two shoes’ politically correct do-gooder with all kinds of certificates and no experience of the fires of mental hell.
Very few truly understand these words:
“Nobody is stronger, nobody is weaker than someone who came back. There is nothing you can do to such a person because whatever you could do is less than what has already been done to him. We have already paid the price” Elie Wiesel
- The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity
- GREEN BERET CALLS BS: On The PTSD Excuse Used By American Sniper’s Killer | Wounded American Warrior