SUNDAY night I went to the downtown heart of our city and over to the courthouse steps where I once heard and saw Barry Goldwater speak. (I didn't dare get too excited over Mr. Goldwater, since he was going to blow up the world, don't you know.)
On Sunday, NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) held a candlelight ceremony to read a proclamation from the mayor of our town that this week, Oct. 4-11, would be Mental Illness Awareness Week. Several people spoke. One father read a poem his son had written before he died; his voice broke halfway through. I am not sure if the son committed suicide or not. That is his picture on the sign ( in the very poor photo I took): Adam. His mother is holding the sign and his father is beside her, smiling.
We all try to smile for the camera. For a little while - just a moment - they are forgetting about Adam so they might inspire hope in others that life can go on without a loved one. A loved one who, perhaps, died because he couldn't get the help he needed.
Stricken by a heart attack or stroke, you will get an ambulance right away; knowledgeable, tender care in the hospital from doctors and nurses; and the therapy to convalesce and get back to normal.
Manic and suicidal, your cry for help may be answered by a team of police with stun guns, physical force, and a trip to jail. Many people with mental illness end up in jail instead of hospitals. Four million of us in the U.S. will develop a brain disorder in the next year.
If you are worried about a loved one there is a NAMI organization in your state. Find out how you can help them; find out how they can help you - femminismo