The issue of mental healthcare in America
This is a topic very near and dear to my heart. I don't want to go too deep into my own thoughts though because I want to know what yours are.
Do you feel like mental health care is adequate?
How do you feel about the incarceration of mentally ill people versus a long term care mental health facility?
Did you know that very few long term mental health care facilities exist? Most patients stay inpatient for an average of a week.
What, in your opinion works in the current system and what doesn't?
Feel free to debate any of these points and add your own!
A lot of mentally ill people have problems with addiction which is why most of their crimes are committed. But we have to look at the reason. Did the persons addiction help lead to their mental illness or did the illness lead to their addiction? And base their sentence on that.
Do we lock up people who knew about their mental illness and decided not to treat it then committed a crime? I understand they don't like the effect of the medication but cancer patients don't like the effect of the treatments they go through but they do it to be healthy again.
I believe more long term care facilities need to be opened and the ones that are truly sick should get the help they need. But if they have commited a violent crime and knew about their illness and decided not to treat it then they should not be able to get out. But if they have not been diagnosed and commit a crime they should have a chance to get healthy. I think that the fear of society is if they win the insanity or mental illness defense that person would be out in a matter of weeks instead of years.
I think in our current system we have such a naive view of mental illness. No one illness fits into a nice little box. It is a very intricate, fascinating, complicated issue.
I have an aunt who was hit by a truck when she was young and her brain stopped developing and she has the IQ of an 6-7 year old. But she was married for many years and had a baby that was still born and I remember her visiting the grave every single day. She is the neatest lady! I have also watched my Dad struggle with his addiction and everytime he drinks and then stops it takes him a little longer to come around again. It is the hardest thing to watch someone you care about suffer and then have those around you treat him as you like you're contagious or something.
When I was a youth pastor I had a whole family of kids who each of them was bipolar. The kids were so afraid to say anything because they were afraid of how everyone else would react.
With all of the things we talk about and research and try to cure, I wish this got more attention.