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What do mental health and getting the car tuned up have in common?

Click to visit Deborah Kimmett’s website

Last night, I was speaking to FCMHAS (Frontenac Mental Health and Addiction Service). They were celebrating their 40th anniversary as an organization as part of the national “Someone You Know” campaign. I was the featured speaker who was taking a light look at mental health issues while sharing about my own depression I experienced a few years back.

The whole night was about taking the stigma off mental health issues. The concept being, that people are not mentally ill. They have a mental illness. Contrary to popular opinion being human is not a disease. And things must be slowly changing because when the host asked how many people knew of someone with addiction or mental health issues 90% of the room put up their hands.

Wouldn’t it be great if people would treat mental health issues like they do their car?

You run out of gas and you fill it up. You don’t sit there at the gas pumps and freak out–

“Why is there no gas in the car?”

I guess when we are talking about looking under any hood, it makes us nervous. I always think the mechanic is going to find something horrible and expensive.

We go to a “head doctor “and we are sure when he has us up on the hoist we might not get put back together.

Acceptance is key.  I got a medication that worked. I had a good community and I took actions I didn’t feel like taking. Like walking and talking. And slowly it changed. And yes I have been in good shape for a few years now.

This morning I went to Byron my mechanic and my oil got changed. And the wobbly wheel I suspected was something gristly was just mud under the rim.

Comment below to tell us what you did to stay well emotionally. And please share on FB.

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  1. Deborah Dixon says:

    Thanks Deb for sharing your story in such a humorous fashion at our recent event and for sharing the message of our “Who Do You Know?” campaign with your followers…namely, that mental illness and addiction are not to be feared or ignored.

    Take care,
    Deborah Dixon
    Communications
    FCMHAS

  2. Harold A Maio says:

    The whole night was about taking the ‘stigma’ off mental health issues.

    I find it hard to believe that anyone would call patent discrimination “stigma.”

    Let’s see if I understand you correctly, rape/no stigma, mental illness/stigma. Is that not what exactly what they taught me? To associate a stigma? Now they have taught you.

    On a very serious side: Someone trained me to the stigma of rape, and it is very likely that someone trained you to the stigma of mental illnesses. You can reject the training. Check me out on the net, I address each instance of that training and I respond to each.

    When you can persuade someone to call patent discrimination “stigma,” you have gained control over them. Generations of women who were so taught about sexual assault passed their training on, but no more.
    Please do not pass another one along. To your daughters, or mine. To your sons, or mine.

    Stigma: My prejudice is within you.
    Discrimination: My prejudice is within me.

    Harold A. Maio, retired Mental Health Editor

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