The most common titles I've heard mental health organizations and government use are: person with lived experience, survivor, advocate, patient, consumer, etc. However, I've heard some people take offence to one title while others asked to be described a certain way.
Arthur Gallant is a young adult dedicated to eliminating stigma surrounding mental health as well as raising awareness and educating the general public and mental health professionals. The child of a parent with an intellectual disability, Arthur has also dealt with mental-health difficulties such as severe anxiety and clinical depression. A former Crown Ward, Arthur uses his story to empower people and challenge the stereotypes surrounding mental health, but to also encourage people to step forward and seek help for their own mental-health difficulties. In 2013, Arthur was 1 of 5 Canadians named as a Face of Mental Illness by the Canadian Alliance on Mental Illness and Mental Health which is an initiative of Bell Let's Talk. Arthur has been featured several times on TVO's The Agenda with Steve Paikin and in The Toronto Star, CBC's The National , CTV News Channel, The Globe and Mail, CHCH's Square Off, and an educational video for the Canadian Mental Health Association (Ontario Chapter)
Talking about mental illness is difficult. I get it. But what is even more difficult is people saying they accept me for who I am and then deserting me. As soon they hear something good has happened to me they're the first people to want to celebrate with me, yet they don't want to hear about the dark side of mental illness.
08/04/2013 09:48 EDT
It is a topic I have blogged and spoken publicly about extensively; how do we make our workplaces friendlier to those with
07/01/2013 09:15 EDT
I was born to a mom with mental illness who was unable to care for herself, which made caring for a child even more challenging for her. During my nine years as a youth in care I lived in 16 different foster homes and group homes in Toronto, Brampton, Ajax, Barrie and Wasaga Beach. Being a youth in care can be lonesome.
05/30/2013 03:23 EDT
I am not surprised that new research suggests youth of 12 and 13 years old are most vulnerable to suicidal thoughts. I want all of you to think about your experience in grade 7 and 8. Think about the events that unfolded. The loss of a friend would be the loss of your world.
05/22/2013 08:13 EDT
Every client of the mental health system knows that at every appointment you attend with your health care team, whether it be doctors or therapists, notes are taken and stored in your file. After years of searching and bureaucracy, I finally got some of those notes back.
05/09/2013 12:36 EDT
<img alt="2013-05-06-MentalHealthBannerfinal.jpg" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/2013-05-06-MentalHealthBannerfinal.jpg" width="90" height="90" style="float: left; margin:10px"/> Two of Canada's largest mental health organizations; The Centre for Addiction & Mental Health and the Canadian Mental Health Association have declared May 6-12, 2013 Mental Health Week. We're over a decade into the new millennium and mental illness is still a taboo topic.
05/05/2013 11:15 EDT
It is something the world has experienced since the beginning of time; every time an accident or an incident happens we rush
04/29/2013 11:34 EDT
It is something we are often reminded to do, meet with our general practitioners on a regular basis to prevent terminal or debilitating illnesses. What's often forgotten by us, but by our doctors too, is that our mind is part of our body.
04/07/2013 11:10 EDT
I couldn't help but feel outraged while watching an episode of <em>Dr. Phil</em> yesterday. I will not disagree with the fact that 'doctor shows' make a great attempt at helping people and offering them resources that may be unavailable in their communities or that they're unable to afford. But at what point does it become exploiting to the guests needing help?
04/04/2013 12:43 EDT
A lot of people perceive mental illness to be a burden and it's that perception that only furthers the stigma and prevents people from seeking treatment. But I believe my mental illness has helped to shape my life in a very positive fashion.
03/18/2013 05:22 EDT
Anytime a celebrity or somebody in the spotlight, like Mindy McCready, takes his or her own life we tend to only talk about the issues facing that specific person. Maybe its easier to talk of somebody everybody knows of. I've talked about why I was grateful I'm still living because, as I've learned, I have a lot to live for. I saw that first hand after my two suicide attempts.
02/19/2013 08:16 EST
We will always have our differences but for the first time in a long time I truly felt like those who have the ability to create change in the mental health system will do so. And now more then ever the powers that be will involve the true stakeholders: the consumer advocates. We are all going to work together.
02/18/2013 12:55 EST
ING Direct Canada recently released a commercial of a man who appeared to be alone, detached, says he's been losing sleep and not eating solid foods. The man says he is cured of his symptoms once his wife steps in and takes him to ING to open an RSP. The bank crossed a line by mocking depression symptoms, which I have personally experienced.
01/23/2013 12:17 EST
Mental health is currently on the forefront of two TV shows that I'm keeping an eye on. Half of my friends believe highlighting the struggles of those with mental illness in a fictional manner only furthers the stigma. The other half believes Hollywood has the ability to use its magic to accurately depict the day-to-day life of those with mental illness.
01/09/2013 12:24 EST
I recently overheard two people joking about how they could shoot up a place, say they were crazy, then not go to jail.The reality is that a court's goal is to rehabilitate those with severe mental illness. I hope you'll keep this in mind as you read about Colorado shooting suspect James Holmes' upcoming hearing.
01/03/2013 05:24 EST
The Sandy Hook tragedy has got people talking worldwide. We may never know for certain if the suspect had a mental illness, but a lot of people are now wondering if mental illness could lead somebody to kill dozens of people. As a mental health advocate, I have an opinion.
12/26/2012 08:37 EST
With the recent, tragic, and unnecessary death of bullying victim Amanda Todd, I believe that it is time to talk about suicide openly. Having the nation begin to talk about bullying and suicide prevention should have happened a long time ago. I am sad that it has taken an end to a life to begin talking about suicide so openly but it is something we must talk about to prevent it.
10/23/2012 05:22 EDT
In order to put an end to a problem such as stigma you must first identify the origin of the problem and ask why it exists. What is it that we with mental illness say or do that makes others treat us negatively therefore creating stigma? I recently had to ask myself this question.
09/18/2012 07:59 EDT
It was just a few years ago that I had my first day of college and I can relate to my co-workers' excitement. But I'm concerned that they aren't being prepared for things like potential mass amounts of student debt but also the toll college and university can take on a student's mental health.
09/04/2012 04:59 EDT
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