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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Stop the Discrimination

Posted on Tue, Jul 12, 2011 at 1:23 PM

My younger brother is a guitar prodigy. He loves classical literature and spending time with friends and family. He is a quiet guy with a wicked funny sense of humour. My younger brother also has a mental illness, as do one in five Canadians. This requires him to be on medication. Unlike other illnesses, there is little known about mental illness so most of the medication is very much like being a guinea pig, but he rolls with the punches. Until recently, when he came upon a new medication that caused his heart to race and almost landed him in emergency. He decided to leave it for a day as his heart still raced and made an appointment. The doctor, who will not be named, was not a mental health professional, but decided she was an expert. She told my parents she had recently seen A Beautiful Mind which she thought very informative and added, "He didn't get very far. Neither will your son," also adding that my brother was not smart enough to make the decision on his own... apparently it would have been better to have a heart attack. Oh! So, apparently by watching a movie (not a biography) on John Nash, one can assume that all people with mental illness go through the exact same thing! Wow! That's like watching some cheesy heist flick and giving tips to bankers about security measures. I would really expect someone with eight years of university credentials to be a little more educated. How can we expect the stigmas to end if even the doctors perpetuate the stereotype? I say take a stand! Stop the discrimination! —Hope For Change

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