Is it time to talk yet?

Is it time to talk yet?

Postby moondrop3 » Mon Jan 16, 2012 11:25 pm

What is mental health?
It's a very vague question is what it is. But I have found in my 11 years of experience and a small lifetime that it is a question well worth asking. And to me it's the mental or emotional state of being in mind, and sometimes out of it. Something I think we all seek to achieve a balance between. That fine and wondrously magical line between one point of reality and dozens or hundreds of them. That "telescopic view" of life, celestial beings and the universe...ok rambling. :oops:

I am not sure what I am looking to achieve by posting here, but I was for a brief moment while the camp was around a member of the mental health committee. My original interest was in the sobriety tent at millrace. But my contribution and services were not needed at that time, and the move to W/J park discontinued that service altogether. And shortly after it also was apparent that my skills as a mental health facilitator would not be needed. Which was unfortunate because at that point the only other way I was able to contribute was to be a...peacekeeper, that didn't last long. And I have been wandering aimlessly on facebook ever since a few weeks before w/j sputtered out.

I still believe that some form of sobriety education is fundamentally key to a healthy procession of our current culture. And my view of what's addictive or not is pretty open....I think everything and anything could be considered addictive. And I believe that there is an almost epidemic proportion of over indulgences in this current culture. I also believe this is a very important topic to keep alive because all of our mental states will morph and adapt as things progress and I may need to be mentally reined back in next week so to speak or, it may be you.

This is A grinding and seeming forgiveless process, but it grinds on at a rate of 3 steps forward and 2.9 back, but always .1 forward. ;)

Lets talk...
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Re: Is it time to talk yet?

Postby davidhazen » Wed Jan 18, 2012 7:52 pm

a humble admission of powerlessness is extremely difficult to expect from those who are grabbing for power because this is what their culture taught them to do... and yet an acknowledgment of unmanageable insanity is what principled nonviolence calls upon us to do... i think when strategic nonviolence has run its course and folks are casting about for the next option, and they know they're vulnerable to the guys with the big guns, we may see some honest self-examination... until then, damage control? :roll:
David Hazen
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Re: Is it time to talk yet?

Postby moondrop3 » Fri Jan 20, 2012 11:49 pm

Hey! Thank you for your response! So what you're saying is it isn't time to talk Just kidding. I really wasn't expecting anyone to respond. I was just bored and trying to keep this forum active. I think it's important for when those times of "self-examination" are present. And I think that's always...ssshhhhh, don't tell anyone. I think we have a instinctive urge to examine ourselves, but it's awkward. And the environment must be *forgiving.* Anyway...lets keep talking, someone's Speace.
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Re: Is it time to talk yet?

Postby » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:00 pm

Just felt an urge today to check on this forum. Not sure what I can contribute but I feel that adding one more person in support couldn't hurt.

I had a rough year last year but not as rough as years before. Addictions, distractions kept me stuck. I agree with you Moondrop3 that addictions can be anything! From meth and alcohol to working or even emotions. And distractions, they are everywhere. This time, I was able to let the process happen. No doubt, it wasn't easy or pretty but I was fortunate I had just what I needed around me to get through. I know there are those that don't.

So if all I can offer is a smile or hug or an ear I will. I gladly accept when they come my way :D I agree with you both that it does take a loving and forgiving environment to do the sometimes terrifying, courageous work of self-examination. As we know too well, that sort of environment can be hard to find. If we all do our part though, there can be more of these spaces. I am still healing and I still hurt but just knowing that so many of us are in the same boat (whether they are aware of that or not) I don't feel alone and I am confident that we are finding each other and progressing together.

Doin' the two step forward one back shuffle can be fun! Let's do it together.
Thank you
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Re: Is it time to talk yet?

Postby davidwoaks » Sun Feb 12, 2012 6:56 pm

So glad to see this dialogue about mental health.

During the 'camps' it was pretty obvious mental health is a huge issue. For better or worse, that fact was forced upon all Occupy camps I've been in touch with, not just Eugene. During camps, we often turned to folks in the mental health industry to help with the crises being presented.

Now that the camps are over, let's not let the topic slip. It's time for the general public to get more hands on with what could be called mental and emotional wellness, or resilience.

i was in peace movement and environmental movement, including doing civil disobedience, and as paid staff for a while.

But most of the 36 years I've been a community organizer in mental health. What makes our issue tough is that it REALLY is about EVERYONE. There''s a false assumption that this is about the 5 percent or 15 percent or 25 percent.

If a young woman is on a high ledge cutting her wrists and about to jump, screaming incoherently....

Then I think we have a consensus that there's an extreme and overwhelming mental and emotional problem, that can even be life threatening.

But when someone is talking in coherent sentences, calmly, rationally... When that individual perhaps has the widespread respect of the culture, and a certain amount of privilege?

The challenging part is to see the commonality between that so-called 'normal' person and that young person on the ledge. They have far more in common than different!

Example: So-called 'normal' folks collectively are actually endangering a PLANET. And entire ecologicaly system, called Earth. That young woman on the ledge is in extreme danger, but she's not wrecking a whole planet.

No, we have far far more in common than difference. This is crucial. Why? Because truly letting this in -- even if it means accepting the grief of witnessing the climate crisis -- truly letting this in ends the SEGREGATION that is at the root of the problem here. The civil rights movement showed that segregation is an absolute root of the oppression.

In mental health, we have this bizarre segregation - We ma see an extremely troubled person as incoherent, totally non-understandable. We may not have empathy. We even may, out of well-meaning sentiments, allow the individual in crisis to do abusive behavior that is clearly over a line.

If people are interested in this topic, consider giving me a call at the MindFreedom International office at 541-345-9106.

Also consider emailing me off list and saying, "Hey, I want to stay in touch with local mental health activism efforts...."

I'd love to see, say, a MENTAL HEALTH PEER ADVOCACY BOOTH next to one of the free Occupy medical booths some Sunday. We helped coordinate such a booth at Project Homeless Connect for five years.

I'd like to keep some kind of organized effort within Occupy, but no longer burden on those who actually work in the mental health industry to have to work on the topic This is really an issue that impacts everyone, absolutely everyone. And we all ought to get hands on with these topics.

We've done some fun creative skits on the topic. Go to youtube and within the search there put in BOYCOTT NORMAL EUGENE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, and see one that was organized by a professional street theater leader we work with, Katina.

You know, this month is the 50th anniversary of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Ken was a friend, and here's the thing: In that book he talked about the COMBINE. That's a piece of farm equipment that was his metaphor for the myriad controlling systems in our society.

If you google BOYCOTT NORMAL you will see a number of our are planning to have an OCCUPY AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC ASSOCIATION in Philly on 5 May. We are encouraging activities in other areas too...

In other words, right here in Eugene, we are helping to support a national protest... and we could use a lot more help here in Eugene on that!

Stay in touch,


David W. Oaks, Director, MindFreedom international

P.S. Visit us in Growers Market, 454 Willamette, Suite 216 -- directly across office from Occupy! When free minds are needed... drop by MindFreedom!

P.P.S. And celebrate World Human Spirit Day this Friday, 17 February... also a day to remember an historic free mind leader Giordano Bruno!
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