This Article is about Mental Health and how it is still viewed even in the Twenty-First Century.
The twenty (21st) first century arrived four years ago on January 1, 2000.
We left the twentieth (20th)Century and with that we had hoped that human-kind would take on a more compassionate, concern, and understanding nature towards so many groups of minorities that are less fortunate than the so "call" normal individuals that suffer from nothing more than the common cold, flu, or aches and pains of growing older.
In many instances this is true .
Great strides have been made for the equality of Afro-Americans, Hispanics,
women, and Native Americans even.
One thing that has not changed and unless society wakes up and stops living in the dark ages.
There is a minority group that will never get a chance to live a better way of life because of how the past represented them.
This minority is the many thousands of individuals that suffer from one form mental illness, psychiatric or developmental disability.
First of all, one must understand the difference between a developmental disability and developmental delay.
One needs to understand the difference between mental illness and the different kinds of mental illness.
Many people do not see mental illness or a psychiatric disability being an illness. It is, make no mistake about it.
Years ago, posters reflected an image of the mentally ill as being dangerously psychotic. This is far from being the truth.
Mental Illness and psychiatric disabilities can mare one for life. Especially if it is diagnosed as a "developmental disability".
A "developmental" disability is a disability that is onset before a person's twenty (22) second birthday.
A "Developmental" disability can be psychiatric in nature, a learning disability, or mental retardation in one form or another. It can limit person's way of life. It can also be in the form of M.S. M.D. C.P. and other challenging physical disabilities.
The only thing different between those mentioned above is that they are visible to the nake eye and people can understand what they can see.
Yet, when it comes down to mental illness, a psychiatric disability, or a learning disability, or mental retardation, of the severe type.
People simply don't have the compassion, understand, and ability to under the plight of those of us who are afflicted with a non-visible disability.
Those with a physical disability are more likely to be hired than those with a mental illness, learning disability, a psychiatric disability,
or mental retardation.
Many State Vocational Rehabilitation programs are specifically set up to help those individuals with a physical disability to go back to work. The counselors are rarely trained to deal with those with a mental impairment.
The State Counselors often pass-the-buck on to an agency with a referral.
However, the person ends up with no help and no possibility of a job.
Ignorance is no excuse. It is not becoming in adults.
Mental Health is serious and often an individual has to receive substandard mental health care due to the fact that insurance companies, Health Maintainence Organizations and Perferred Provider Organizations not to mention state medicaid and Federal Medicare do not see the needs of the many rather the needs of the few.
The needs of the many should outweigh the needs of the few. However, The State and Federal Government is often short-sighted and cuts back in necessary funds to state mental health and hyigene departments that distribute the monies to the various networks of community mental health centers.
Often those individuals that really need the mental health treatment have to wait between three and six months.
Those individuals being released out of state run mental health facilities must wait any where between 3 to 6 weeks for aftercare due to cuts in mental health funding.
Mental Health is everyone's business. Regardless if one suffers from it or not. It is a known fact of life that everyone has something wrong with their personality.
Every one and no one is free from having a personality disorder of one kind or another.
There are as many different types of personality disorders as there is mental illness or psychiatric problems.
Believe it or not, those people that don't care about anyone but themselves and thinks about no one else but themselves suffers from what DSM IV Handbook diagnoses as a "Naricissitic " personality disorder.
People who avoid certain functions, and become relusive suffer from a personality disorder known an "Avoidant" personality disorder.
People who do things against society such as hurt, kill, steal, and so forth mostly likely have a "psychotic anti-social" personality disorder.
There is also chronic depression, Bi-Polar Disorders, ADD/ADHD, Austism,
Schziophrenia, which is a no fault brain disorder and several others.
Depression is very serious. A long time they use to call it "Melacholia".
However, it use to come and go. The person use to be on a roller coaster ride and now it is Manic-Depressive Disorder.
There is also eating disorders which are serious. These are bought by unrealistic expectations of parents for their children.
Mental Health is everyone's business.
No one should ever say "it will not happen to me" because mostly like you may be one of the many that comes down with it later on.
Unless a person walks a mile in another person's shoes that has suffered with mental illness, a developmental disability, a learning disability, or mental retardation. They will never know first hand what it is to be treated like you are some kind of uncurable diseases.
Society has not changed towards the plight of the mentally ill, developmentally disabled, learning disabled or mentally retarded.
Employers are still reluctant to hire those of us with a mental disability.
Regardless of The American With Disability Act, which was signed in to law by President George Bush Sr.
States Juvenile Court and Child Protection Services still use the reason to remove children from their parents care,custody, and control due to the fact the parent or parents have mental illness.
Fourty-(45) Five states still have grounds to terminate parental rights on the ground of mental illness and deficiency.
Society lack of empathy and compassion is the reason why nothing is changing for those of us who are afflicted with a mental disability.
Society needs to change the way they perceive those of us will a mental disabilty and rather seeing our disability, look as our ability and focus on that.
Our Constitution states that we all have the same unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. However, for the many thousands of us who suffer from a mental disability . Very few of us will ever have the chance to live a happy, nearly normal life, with the opportunity to advance, earn a decent living, and live a comfortable life style.
Most of us will continue to live on Social Security Supplemetary Security Income, Social Security Disability, or if able to find a job, minimum wage.
Truly, The Constitution does protect those of us with a mental disability.
Society has the capability of changing the way it perceives those of us with a mental disability. When they do open up their eyes, take off their binders, and realize we are just as human as they are.
Then society will benefit by it.
Yes, great strides have been made towards equality and a better way of life for some minorities.
The one minority that is not treated with equality and treated more like a disease and a pox on society is those of us with a mental disability.
Little wonder our society is decaying.
What a shame.