This #bellletstalkday is a hard one for me. I was going to post this yesterday but I didn’t, I overthought things, which isn’t the point.
The cynic in me however, rears it’s head when hashtags like the one above appear. Sent from an cooperation which has become such a monopoly and has failed so many people, just read about Jan Wong. Why is it them who tells us to speak of this when and why. And this one day a year thing. Please.
But when Bell started this yearly campaign to ‘end the stigma’ I thought fine, let’s talk, for sure! Words and talking are the way to go, but as we know also, celebrities on twitter telling us ‘it gets better’ sure as shit doesn’t get my son out of bed in the morning when his anxiety is so bad he holds his head and is stuck, for hours.
But it’s like everything these days. The people who get it, really get it and there is goodness and the people who don’t, never really will.
Maybe I should just be happy for what help there is, before Doug Ford gets rid of it all too. And I’d help, I know it’s pointless to sit and yell insults from the sidelines and maybe someday I will, when my kids are better and we’re not all so tired.
When our son first got ill it was unbelievably hard to get help. People expected him to talk it out, tell what was wrong, advocate for what he needed. But instead, he spent weeks in bed, often just screaming in pain. It was hard to carry a fighting ten year old to doctors, to counselors, to clinics. But we did, of course we did. Now, I’m only saying this because we finally (sort of) got help. But we were also turned away so many times – I’m not kidding – with the words, “I can’t help, sorry, nothing I can do” from professionals. As petrified as we were as parents, we knew the path we had to take, and we fought, we still do. We’re smart, educated (already having had experienced mental illness in our families), we didn’t have to worry much about paying ourselves for help, and do I have to say, we’re white? We have jobs that allow us to be at home, take time off. So our biggest takeaway from this was and still is, how the fuck do families who are unable to identify what is wrong with their child, unable to know how to fight/advocate for them, unable to be off work, unable to read/research, unable to pay for help – save their child or loved one?
We’ll get through, we’ll more than get through. But other parents without the resources and luck we have, but with the same huge parenting hearts and love for their kids – they’re the ones who need more than a goddamn hashtag.