Sinead O’Connor released a video of herself yesterday, allegedly holed up in a motel in New Jersey, desperately crying out for help. Suicidally depressed, she is clearly in distress.
And abjectly alone.
If Sinead O’Connor, with all of her success, wealth, and entourage, finds herself alone in a cheap hotel in Jersey, imagine what the average person living with a brain disorder is doing.
“Why are we alone?” Sinead cries out. “People who suffer from mental illness are the most vulnerable people on Earth. You’ve got to take care of us. We’re not like everybody.”
That’s true. People who suffer with brain disorders are lonely. Ostracized by a society that doesn’t understand brain disorders; unsupported by a draconian health care system which, at best, prescribes the right medicine before kicking them to the curb without any further support; and, most egregiously, left to fend for themselves when they are incapable of doing so,
Nearly all mentally ill/brain-disordered people find themselves abandoned by their families and friends and have no advocacy, anywhere.
Yes, Sinead, mentally ill people are among the loneliest on earth. But that’s just because so many human beings are judgmental, ignorant, and incapable.
“If you have a family member that suffers from mental illness, care for them, tenderness, love, care for them,” she advises. “Visit them in the hospital, don’t dump them in the hospital and bugger off.”
Yeah, well….good advice, Sinead. Only that’s a little hard to implement when the average human being is so……average. It takes a special person with an open heart to stick around when someone is as low as they’re ever going to get. Most human beings, as far as I’ve ever seen, don’t have the goods.
What’s most annoying about the BBC article that accompanies her video is the ever-ubiquitous “Bullet List” – that succint (thank God!) short list of how to cure any problem in 5 simple steps or less. This BBC list only has FOUR! so if you suffer from depression, you’re already well on your way. JUST DO THIS! and everything’s gonna turn out alright. Here’s that list so you can hop to it if you’re out there suffering from depression!
DEPRESSION: WHERE TO GET HELP? (question mark unwarranted, BBC writer)
Talk to someone you trust about how you are feeling – don’t suffer in silence. (well, see, that’s the thing: most do suffer in silence. It’s up to the people around them to work a little harder)
If it’s become a long-term problem, see your GP – you may need medication. ( Right. Except most people with a brain disorder have no idea that anything is wrong nor how to control what’s happening. Ever hear of drug addiction or alcoholism? Both are forms of self-medication for undiagnosed/untreated mental illnesses)
Help yourself by getting some exercise, eating healthily and doing things you enjoy. (Okay! That sounds easy! Except that when a person is depressed, they don’t even feel like wiping their own ass. The average person on the street, brain disordered or not, doesn’t even get exercise daily or eat healthily. Let’s review our obesity stats: 71 percent of women, 61 percent of men, 33 percent of our children are either overweight or obese. I would bet that, were all these people to subject themselves to an evaluation, some level of depression or anxiety would be found.
If the depression has been continuing for some time, you may need to be referred for therapy or counseling. (blah, blah, blah, blah, blah)
Ever the cutting-edge artist, Sinead O’Connor shares herself fully and vulnerably in this video, even though she already knows that she can count on an onslaught of criticism and abuse from plenty of rotten people.
“I just want to make this video so you all could see what the fuck it’s like,” she continued.
“It’s the stigma that’s killing people, not the mental fucking illnesses.”