As a lot of you may already know, this week (11th May – 17th May) is Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW), 2015. If you search for #MHAW15 on Twitter, you’ll find a plethora of information on all types of Mental Illness, treatments, campaigns, appeals…which is all worthwhile reading.
But I just wanted to take a few minutes to put across my view, be it right or wrong. Why do we need to designate a particular week of the calendar year to raise awareness of MH? All of my peers in the Twitter MH community spend all year trying to raise awareness of MH and the issues surrounding it. I know people who hold multiple events each year, in an effort to raise money for charities like Mind. From that point of view, every week is MHAW.
It would also seem that only those who live with a MH condition take any notice of MHAW. I don’t know about you, but I know what it’s like to live with the invisible agony of Anxiety, Depression, Personality Disorder, Eating Disorders. I don’t need to be educated, nor do my loved ones. For the wider public, MHAW will only manifest itself in the occasional television clip, or newspaper article. Are they really going to choke on their cornflakes while watching Breakfast Television, and decide that enough is enough…?
To be clear, MH awareness is something I am passionate about, but I think everyone has a cause that is important to them. For some it will be Cancer, for others, Third World poverty. So the point I am trying to make is this…would the MH community not benefit more by coming together, forming a unit of solidarity and make one constant, relentless, Almighty racket, 365 days a year? If we only reach our peers, then so be it…one person in four, after all…let us help one another.