We must be willing to change

Laura Adam says more has to be done to understand mental health
Laura Adam says more has to be done to understand mental health

North Lanarkshire Youth Council and CALMS (Community Action for Locally Managing Stress) are raising awareness of mental health.

But what do we actually know about mental health asks University of West of Scotland student Laura Adam in our latest Youth Talking column.

There is no way to tell just by looking at a person if they have a mental condition or not, but in this case, ignorance is not bliss.

When we think of someone with a mental health problem we think about someone in a pearl white jacket that fastens up the back or we think of the ‘strange’ guy at the back of the bus talking to himself, you know, the one you don’t even make eye contact with but still watch when he isn’t looking.

Let me tell you something, this doesn’t help anyone.

People with mental disorders are not there for your personal entertainment, they are not there so that you have a story to tell your friends at the end of the day, they are not there for you to have a little chuckle at and they are definitely not there for you to judge.

Of course some of us do know about these things and are supportive to anyone we know with a mental disability, but there are those out there who are not supportive.

The fact of the matter is a lot of people suffer from mental instability and you would never know it because it isn’t always obvious.

The reason that many people suffer through these conditions alone is one of two reasons; either you don’t care enough to find out or people are so scared of being judged that they don’t bother telling anyone.

The problem is that it is the 21st century and somehow society isn’t evolved enough to accept people who are suffering from mental disorders.

This is a step we must take, in order to help we must first accept.

Society itself has an illness and that’s called ignorance and this illness stands in front of the first steps to a potentially harmonious society.

Far too many times people have been judged and ridiculed for things that they are unable to control

So why should we help? If not for affection for another person, then do it for a clear conscience.

The tragic truth of it is that not all people survive their illnesses.

It may not be physical, you don’t see the effects so you think it can’t be that bad, but it can be and a lot of the time it is that bad.

Far too many people lose their lives to seemingly harmless issues.

So you think someone might be struggling and you think to yourself ‘it’s okay it will get better’ and so you do nothing. People do not need to wait for things to eventually get better they need it to be better now!

Some people don’t have a future to wait for. What if they did? We could be the beginning.

What if no one young or old had to go it alone? What if we extended out our hand to someone in need?

I am not saying that it is the easiest thing in the world to help a person with their issues. In fact it could be the hardest thing that you ever have to do, but it’s worth it.

Sometimes the only thing people need is to lean on someone. Why not let someone lean on you?

Don’t just wait around, be the change you want to see, who knows you might just change someone’s life.