Thank You ~ I’m OK! – Many are not…

I could not have expected the number of warm replies to my article about depression: ‘Striking Out At The Black Dog’: private emails and of course the immense amount of comments on the shared social media sites added up to an overwhelming ‘thumbs up’ for the article.

Many replies point toward the hidden threat to mental health in the future. We are all fragile beings, and while physical illness is seen: mental illness is hidden and unseen. Well: I write unseen: but truth to tell we meet many people with unusual behaviour, and aggression and argument are seen daily. Long-distance and daily car commuters witness a car-rage incident during many journeys: examples which can indicate mental unrest.

Yesterday I watched a group of children (I’d guess no older than 12 years) walk along the middle of the street at eight in the evening. They are carrying metal pipes and heavy sticks. As they walked along the road, they hit the occasion car and themselves. While watching, I consider intervention: and choose to walk away. What is the point of confrontation with young children? It would escalate, and in the end, the adult would be the loser. There is frustration about this situation: because in the same street last week: a similar group of kids: (eight or nine in number and no older than early teens ) sat on the pavement: smoking dope, music flat out, and highly vocal. Worse of all, the behaviour between the girls and boys was violent and aggressive: a sad situation.

I’m no moralist or judge: but this type of situation concerns anyone witnessing the gatherings. Forget the social ‘rules’ what are you going to do to kids? And the parents are probably in the most difficult of situations at present. Punishing them would be adding their difficulties. I have to think about the problem with more depth.

I do not feel angry with the kids. I feel sorry for them, not the sorrow or the ‘do-gooder’ who believe they have the answers. The majority of ‘do-gooder’ live in nice houses, have three meals a day, and their children enjoy private education, and Uni. They do not have the slightest idea of how the ruffians function. No doubt many will be parents, have criminal records or addictions before they reach twenty and some will never know what it is like to earn a living.

The suspicion is they are already depressed and angry with a society which seems broken. Do you think the kid’s do not listen to the media, their parent’s frustration and mixed messages? Do you not think they are worried about their future? You see, for many of the kids, their respite was the two-week holiday, mixing at family parties etc: their few connnections with family have been taken away. They are angry, the same as you were angry with the world when you were a teenager: The difference is, for these kids, childhood is a step they’ll never know. As I see every day: once they return home from school, they are out on the streets: angry and bored and without direction.

No: I am not saying every child is wild and angry. I’m writing many see no future and feel there is nothing to lose. To see a group of children sharing a spliff of dope is a sad indictment of society. Tell me I’m wrong: and if so, explain why my thoughts are adrift.

No wonder the population’s mental health issues are growing: confusion is a seed of depression. And it is all too easy to title a child a difficult when the possibility is they are angry and frustrated with a world viewed as unfair and unrewarding. When no future is recognised, there is no hope, and without hope, there is little respect for the society regarded as socially bias and greedy.

There are two parts of the social spectrum being ignored. The young and the old. In the centre are a group of people who think they know all without reference to the young and old. They are centred in their persona agenda and do not consider the real needs and thoughts of the two fragile groups. So many people seem to know what the young and old need without asking.

I’ll ask a specific question:

‘What provisions are being made for tens of thousands neglected and mentally damaged people: who have ( and will ) become ill because of this situation?’

We should become aware of the issue today. I’m not interested in the in’s and out’s of vaccines and ‘getting back to normal’. I’m concerned for those who will be forgotten. And consider, the majority had no interest in them before the crisis: so what wil change when it is over? My concern for their wellbeing is more significant than any issue I’ve written about or considered during 20 years of writing essays and books.

Some of you will remember parents or grandparents talking about WW2 decades after the event. They were scarred by bombs and family loss for the whole of their lives. And this situation has lasted long enough to scar the weak and vulnerable for life. My feeling is we should become aware of this damage, and not ignore it: those who are fragile, become unable to function and slip into dark places of despair. Ignoring those who become damaged is inevitable: they were previously ignored: they will be forgotten in the future: keep this is mind…

Our work is about finding ways to become a Well Being: So You are asked to consider the long term wellbeing of those who will be ignored. I know you cannot always be hands-on: but you can take time to seek information about the situation. Surely it must be worth considering the loneliness of old age and mental illness. I’m asking you to be aware of the horror. And next time you see a group of kid’s sitting on the pavement, smoking and playing their music at top decibels. Remember, the unfair society is the reason for their anger: the disadvantaged kids know in their hearts where their future lies.

Ian Timothy

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