Category Archives: Opinion

ADHD is not just bad behaviour

I swear if I read one more meme about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) being a made up condition, I will scream. If I see one more post about kids with ADHD just needing a ‘kick up the arse’, I will explode. 

ADHD is not just a child being naughty.  It is a documented disability.  It is not a new condition. In fact it was first added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1980.  At the risk of alarming anyone, that is nearly 40 years ago.

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Receiving a disability payment isn’t lucky

In September last year I received a letter to say that my Disability Support Pension was being reviewed.  It was the day that I was dreading and it had come at an already stressful time for my family.  I thought that I had missed out on being reviewed, but new measures introduced by the current government meant that I was caught in the net.Receiving this review brought up all of my familiar anxieties about whether or not I deserved the payment.  Was I really sick enough? There were people worse off than me surely.

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Not all awareness is good

Slacktivism via social media has been a hot topic for a while now.  There is always a ridiculous chain message going around that tells you to post something as your status in order to raise awareness for a cause.  These messages are spread either through private message or via a ‘please repost’ status update.  The worst part of these updates?  Most people don’t seem to even check the details before hitting share.

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Does ‘real’ parenting normalise the symptoms of mental illness?

The online world of parenting has firmly shifted into the realm of being ‘real’.  The more raw you are, the better.  Where there used to be a martyr rivalry, there is now a competition for who can appear the most neglectful without actually harming your children.Women are applauded for admitting that they can’t do it all.  On the surface this isn’t a bad thing.  No one is perfect, and the belief that it is can be detrimental.  Most of us are able to look at those who are being raw and say ‘that’s nice, but not for me.’  What about the women who are struggling? Does this movement really help them?

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The imbalance of power in mental health

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A few weeks ago a discussion started on a friend’s status update about the stupid things that crisis line workers had suggested when we were in crisis.  It was the catalyst for a rant to Paul about the unfairness of relying on other people to help you when you were feeling vulnerable.  It spilled into conversations with my psychologist about how I now use having to deal with crisis lines as a deterrent for self harm.It was through these conversations that it hit me just how unbalanced the power is when it comes to a person with a mental illness.  This imbalance spills into other parts of their life as well.  Their physical needs are often written off as symptoms of a mental illness.  Chest pain is a panic attack, stomach pain is anxiety, an allergic reaction is depression (this one happened to someone I know!).

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