Bubbles the Clown. Photo: Bohdan Doval

LETTER: It might happen to you

From reader Bubbles the Clown about mental illness

If you do not understand mental illness, good. Good for you. You should not have to understand. If you do not understand why some people can’t get out of bed in the morning, good. I hope you jump out of bed every single morning ready to take the world by storm.

If you do not understand how someone could drag a blade across their skin, good. I hope you are never that desperate to feel a distraction from the pain inside your body.

If you don’t understand what it would take to drive someone to drink, over-eat, starve themselves, or purge, despite everything everyone and every body function they have lost in the process, good. I hope you stay happy and healthy in your own body.

If you do not understand how someone can be so overwhelmed with anxiety to the point where they can barely function, good. I hope you always feel confident.

If you don’t understand how a person can be celibate for years and then engage in risky sexual behaviour overnight, good. I hope your sexual experiences are always healthy and consensual.

If you don’t understand how someone can go night after night without sleep, good. I hope you rest peacefully every night.

If you don’t understand why a person won’t just go to church or rehab or find someone that can help them, good. I hope you always have somewhere to turn.

If you do not understand how someone can keep swallowing pills, putting needles in their arms, tying knots in ropes or standing on the tops of bridges, good. I hope you never feel that desperate for relief.

If you do not understand, good. You are not supposed to. Mental health awareness means just that: be aware that each of us is dealing with issues. Be aware of others. Be kind. Do not judge.

It might happen to you.

Bernie Brown

a.k.a. Bubbles the Clown


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