- Mental Health
Tragedy in Newtown, CT - This was not about us!
Let the world grieve!
Understandably the world is in an uproar over Friday’s tragedy. Once again many innocent lives were taken, and once again….for no apparent reason. We can be sure of one thing though, that in the weeks to come we will begin to learn, little by little, that there were visible signs of something not being right with this twenty year old man whose mental illness brought him to a point where he was able to destroy dozens, most likely hundreds, of lives without batting an eyelash.
I do not debate, that is not my style. I have no problem speaking my mind, telling someone how I feel or what I think. But in my opinion, when it comes to politics, religion, gun control, sexual preferences, abortions, or even something as simple as plastic surgery…it’s none of my business. People are, and should be, allowed to believe in what they want…so long as it does not physically harm another.
My first reaction, when hearing the news on Friday, was intense sadness. I sat at my desk, reading the updates, with tears just streaming down my face…my heart literally hurt! Yes, there were, and still are, moments of extreme anger towards this very sick individual.
I expressed my feelings on Friday (to my world) by posting a collage I created onto my Facebook page. Then I tried to move on to processing this horrendous act (in my mind), which is the only way I know how to begin grieving.
I am in no way related to, nor do I personally know, any of the victims from Friday’s tragedy, but I do believe that all of the debating, arguing, and pointing of fingers that is going on is only hindering their families’ ability to start their healing process. Fighting and spewing anger will do nothing to change what’s happened.
Those lost lives are not gone because of God (or lack of belief), guns (or lack of gun control), or anyone’s personal beliefs…they are gone because somebody was extremely, mentally ill! And I, for one, do not believe for one minute that there weren’t many signs, along with huge red flags going up, to alert the people around him that something was going seriously wrong. Complacency is what kills!
People, if they care enough, instinctively know when something is wrong with a loved one. Pulling from my own personal experiences this past year, I watched one of my sons falling into the abyss. I did the best I knew how to help him pull himself out, but when I saw that all of my efforts were for naught, and fearing that there was a possibility of those around him being harmed, I took other actions. I put myself in a position, and did things, that could very well have caused me to lose the love of my son forever.
Without going into details, the things that I did were to protect others from getting hurt, and when it was happening I saw the hatred coming from my son’s eyes. Yes, it killed me to know that at that very moment my son despised me, but I didn’t know what else to do. My natural instinct was to protect! Thankfully my son came out of the mess he was getting himself into a much better, and stronger, man. I can’t imagine being any more proud of him than I am right now. But I took a huge risk…I’m just glad it worked out!
I can’t understand for the life of me why, or how, the families, friends, or even co-workers, of these people who display obvious signs of mental illness take no action. If you see someone acting erratically, shouldn’t your natural instinct be to try to help? If someone has diabetes, would ignoring it make it go away? No, it would not! Why would mental illness be any different? It does not just disappear, and if gone untreated, it gets worse….FAR WORSE! So please, please, I am begging people throughout this entire world, if someone you love, or care about, is showing signs of mental illness, do something! Don’t just pretend that everything will be alright, and that it will go away on its own…because it won’t. If nothing is done about someone’s mental illness (or signs of), be it that particular person, his/her direct family, perfect strangers, or even you, yourself…SOMEONE IS GOING TO GET HURT!