It’s OK not to be OK

Hello lovelies,
I’ve been quite absent the last few weeks due to some issues with technology and also because I couldn’t find anything I desperately wanted to write about so badly that I would sacrifice my thumbs and possibly even my vision in order to write a post using the WordPress app on my phone.

This past weekend we were all coming down from the excitement (and sleep deprivation) of celebrating my cousin’s wedding, when we heard that my brother lost a mate to the grips of depression.

This is not the first person my brother has lost and I’m not going to name names, out of respect for the man’s family and friends who are grieving. However, I did want to take a moment to acknowledge that it’s ok not to be ok.

The world needs to be reminded that even the roughest most “blokey of blokes” needs to know that it’s ok to talk, it’s ok to not be ok. It’s not a sign of weakness to seek help, comfort or to admit you’re not ok. No, not a sign of weakness at all. Sometimes some of us forget this though and even the “blokey bloke” himself needs to be reminded that it’s not weak to speak.

It’s not enough for us to say these things though, it’s not enough for us to say it’s ok not to be ok, we also need to act on it. Observe those around us, ask others how they are doing and really mean it. Asking, “how are you” should not just be a throwaway line, but a true question about a person’s wellbeing.

I’m not saying that we can save the world, but maybe, just maybe we can help to pull someone that little bit back away from the edge.

To all those we’ve lost, who saw no other way out of the darkness, we will always remember you. In your memory we will work together as a family, as friends and as a community, to bring mental illness out of the shadows and let everyone know that truly, it is ok not to be ok.

-KK

Beyond Blue Support Service
Support. Advice. Action
1300 224 636
It’s not weak to speak
It’s ok not to be ok
http://www.beyondblue.org.au

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Why Is It So?

Hello Lovelies,

Unless you are living in the dark ages, I’m sure you have all heard of the sad passing of the much loved comedian and actor, Robin Williams. As details of his passing emerged, most expressed their surprise, sadness and sympathy and extended their condolences to his family and loved ones. Sadly though, a small minority referred to his final actions as selfish or cowardly.

In a world where political correctness is spiraling out of control, how is it that people are still ignorant and discriminative against those who suffer from mental illness? I think Ricky Gervais was spot on when he posted this on social media the other day,

Telling people with depression to “just snap out of it” is about as useful as telling people with cancer to “just stop having cancer”.

robin-williams1

People all over the world are struggling to comprehend how a man who was loved and admired by so many could take his own life. The thing is though, we (the public) saw Robin Williams the comedic genius, talented actor and generous person, but we didn’t know that man that struggled with depression and substance abuse*. People are asking why, they want to know why he did what he did, why he didn’t ask for help, they want to know why he couldn’t see how much he had to live for and how much people loved and admired him. Whilst I haven’t experienced depression myself and I won’t pretend to understand what it’s like to suffer depression, I can see that it’s important to bring it out in the open and to create a society where people are not ashamed, embarrassed, criticised or discriminated against for suffering a mental illness. Organisations such as beyondblue, R U OK? and Lifeline are working towards bringing mental illness out of the shadows, removing the stigma attached to mental illness and providing help and support not only for those who suffer from mental illness but also those who are supporting loved ones.

Although society seems to be obsessed with political correctness, discrimination against others because of race, social class,religion, mental illness and a range of other factors is still clearly evident in all corners of the world.

I began writing down my thoughts and this is what I came up with:

There are countries at war, because of race, religion or land.

There’s death, destruction and devastation.

But why is it so?

 

There are people without homes, people with no place to go.

They’re cold, hungry and alone.

But why is it so?

 

There are children born to parents who cannot or will not care for them.

They’re feeling unloved and unwanted.

But why is it so?

 

There are people who discriminate towards others because of race, social class, religion, sexual orientation, mental illness.

They’re leaving people feeling alone and afraid, unable to ask for help.

But why is it so?

 

In a society that promotes equality and fairness, a society that encourages us to embrace our differences, why are we still not equal? Why is there not peace? Why is there loneliness, despair, discrimination, death?

Why is it so?

Now I leave you with this final statement, if you are ever feeling down, alone or afraid please ask for help and if you suspect someone might be feeling this way, simply ask them R U OK?

-KK

*please note, all released statements provided clearly say that they believe Robin Williams was sober at the time of his passing

© Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within, (2013-2015). Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Katherine A. Kovacs and The Writer Within with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.