Do you see the homeless, the mentally ill, someone in a psychiatric hospital or jail be abused or mistreated?
Does it bother you when you see yet another mentally ill person shot and killed?
Have you watched your loved one with a mental illness get mistreated by a paramedic, doctor, nurse, policeman, teacher, lawyer, or judge because they were stigmatized?
Do you see the stigma of mental illness preventing people from getting much needed help?
When you see Hollywood or the media depict the mentally ill in a wrong way, does it make you feel disgusted?
Have you or someone you loved spent hours if not days waiting for a psychiatric bed?
Has someone you know been told they can’t be helped because they don’t meet the standards? “They have to be a threat to themselves or others”
As a loved one, have you tried to be a part in the care of your mentally ill loved one to find out because of HIPPA, you can’t discuss anything about them with their medical professionals treating them?
Have you ever spoken to a cop or medical professional explaining how much your loved one or friend is in crisis to just be told that they don’t see it that way. You become frustrated because you know them best.
Have you just been diagnosed with a mental illness and have no clue where to go to learn more about your illness and get help if you need support or guidance?
Do you feel like you are weak because you have a mental illness because you have been programmed all your life that the mentally ill are bad people who just can’t handle the stress of life?
Does it bother you when you hear that yet another soldier, police officer, young child, etc has committed suicide.
Do you wish more was taught about mental health in school?
Do you not know anyone personally who has been affected by stigma or mental illness, you probably are one of the very few. Mental illness effects 1 in 4 people.
If you do have a mental illness, do you want to do something to better the system for you and other mentally ill people? Do you want to share your experiences to help others? Is your loved one motivating you to change the system? Are you someone who is just fed up with the way the mentally ill are being treated and want to do something about it? Are you a politician and want to pass legislation to help the mentally ill? Are you in the media and want to better educate the public about mental health? Are you a celebrity and have a mental illness and want to share that you have a mental illness to help erase the stigma and make people know that it can affect anyone? Are you someone with influence who can help with the cause of getting the homeless off the street, the mentally ill the care they need, the public educated, the stigma erased, and see better facilities? Are you mentally ill and just want to advocate for yourself by getting the help you need?
If so, you are now considered an advocate and we need you. There is no right or wrong way to advocate, but here are some suggestions. If you have more, please write me at email@example.com and I will add them to the list.
Start calling your lawmakers asking for better facilities, better education to the public to eradicate stigma, let them know that people need to be aware of where they can get help, and more research needs to be done. Use your own experiences and be open and honest so your passion shows through so you are taken seriously. Directory of Politicians to Contact
You can also get involved with local psychiatric hospitals and get on boards that are making things better for the mentally ill in your area.
(NAMI especially has great ideas)
Know the famous people who struggle with mental illnesses so you can use them as references to show that anyone can be affected by mental illness and possibly even contact them for help.
Consider joining these are look up other places on the internet of groups you can join for the specific mental illness your loved one has. There are also many support groups for all the mental illnesses.
You might also want to check out website to see how others have advocated for themselves or others.
Volunteer at a homeless shelter or Suicide Hotline.
If you have more ideas that should be added to this list, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: After all the blog links there is more valuable information including how to starthelping in more specific ways and how to self-advocate.
Here are some examples of blogs showing how I advocate.
I am constantly writing blogs and letters, posting things on social media, making phone calls, seeing people in person, ran a local event to raise awareness, and run the largest FB Group for Advocates.
However, I am just one voice. My philosophy from the very beginning is that the advocates need to unite to have a larger voice. We have all these organizations with their own causes and niches and even though I have tried effortlessly to join together and make a bigger impact, so far it has not worked. The Frustrations of Being a Mental Health Advocate and The Frustrations of a Mental Health Advocate
I won’t give up and will fight until the day I die to make the world a better place for the mentally ill. All the horrible experiences (one example)I have had will all be worth it if I can die staying the stigma is erased and the mentally ill are well taken care of.
JOIN ME!!!!! Let’s join hands and change the world for the Let’s create a place where mental illnesses are treated like physical illnesses. Let’s get it to where the mentally ill are no longer viewed as menaces to society and treated with respect. We can make it so there are enough facilities, more people trained to deal with mentally (police for example.), ntally ill don’t have to deal with the stigma. The stigma will be eradicated! Families will be able to help their loved ones, the public will know where to find resources and not be ashamed to seek out help.
Most importantly, the mentally ill and their families won’t have to deal with the stigma. The stigma will be eradicated!
Join other advocates Here:
NEW AND UPCOMING!!! Mental Health Advocates Making a Difference
Mental Health Advocates United currently looking for contributors/ administrators) Contact Michelle at email@example.com if interested.
If I can help you in any way, I would be more than happy to. I have over 30 guest posts and welcome others so people can share their stories and experiences and offer tips. I also will share your blogs, websites, book, and social media sites. MY BLOG
If you are an organization, company, or individual that would be willing to help out, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION!
To self advocate
Sometimes, all you can do is get through the day. That is okay. That is when you focus your energies on taking care of yourself. The time to help others or join a cause can happen when you are feeling better.
Join a support group, get an accountability partner, take simple steps, follow your doctor’s orders, get a network of friends who know all about your illness and can step in if you are in crisis. I have found it helpful to blog. If you don’t want to do that, I highly suggest you journal.
Make sure you eat right, exercise, set goals for yourself, and seek out help if you need it.
Some blogs I have written that might help: