Hi and Welcome to the A & J PEI Treasures E Jean Simpson Author Blog Post and Podcast. I’m your host, Jean coming to you from the lovely Province of Prince Edward Island, Canada!! The blog post and podcast is an opinion piece and only reflects this author’s opinion and not that of any other entity. Today’s blog post and podcasts focuses on weathering the weather and some things that have hit the media lately. If you want to find out more, then stay tuned…
I find that since I get older, the weather seems to cause me more trouble than it did when I was younger. Rain and such can result in me being a little slower. I now have a gimpy hip. It’s not unusual particularly in my family. One of my great Uncles had a perpetual limp. I didn’t meet him until his 80’s or more though. I just thought, in my case, it would wait till later in life. The day I work on my blog post, the weather was wet and unpleasant. Sam luckily got one walk already.
I sat trying to think of topics for my blog post. It isn’t that there is a lack of topics. There are just so many topics one could select, that sometimes my brain blanks or gets focused on something that I question whether or not I should write about it. Today I saw the most discouraging post out there. It was a news post. I think what is most discouraging about it is that a young woman died due to her addictions. She suffered from both mental health issues including addictions and was in a shelter. This is not completely uncommon, she could have been your sister, cousin, mother, aunt…she could have been anyone. What was most discouraging is that someone decided to record her and make her a ‘media sensation’. The worst thing wasn’t even that. It was that they had so little knowledge about addictions and mental health that they literally answered for this by saying, they were “helping” her by “sending her money” as if that made it alright. What they didn’t understand was that they were feeding her addiction. It also brings me back to this could be anyone including your mother, sister, aunt, or cousin. They were complicating at least one of her mental health issues. They were confused by the difference between enabling and helping. It wasn’t a kindness. What would have been a kindness would have been to have someone develop a relationship with her and maybe get her to the point where she might consider working on either the addictions or the mental health issue or both. Providing her with food or necessities. Of course, that wouldn’t result in media likes and shares. For those who do not understand addictions, except peripherally as some condition that anyone can stop at any time…it is a deadly condition. It destroys the person who suffers and creates pain for their families. It is not some fun thing to put up on social media and make a sensation of someone fighting with people and their own demons. At least I like to think that the people involved in this were lacking in true information about addiction and mental illness. I also like to think that they couldn’t foresee the resultant death.
A much better way to deal with these situations is to help them to find a way to live a happier and more productive life. Help them find a reason to get help so they can make their own decisions and have a solid chance of surviving. Some people seem to think that you can solve any problem by throwing money at it. Sadly, some problems are only made more deadly. Anyway, I think the moral of what I say about this case, is that they call it a ‘cautionary tale’. It’s not a ‘cautionary tale’. It’s a person’s life who tanked and people thought it worth it to keep tanking it so that she died of an addiction. Doesn’t sound quite so romantic and selfless when I strip away the glitz, glamour and romanticism used by the media and call it what it is; does it? Think about what you put out there in the world and how things could be handled to benefit someone in a difficult situation. She might have had a better story…though not one that got lots of follows on social media. Not all stories are a social media thing nor should they be. Some stories need help to be changed. Some stories need to be properly understood. Now this part is up to you, but I tend not to watch things that I find to be manipulation of people in a negative or harmful way. This is the power that everyone seems to forget that they own. The power to shut off inappropriate videos. I’m not talking ‘cancel culture’. I’m talking about, just don’t watch videos that border on enablement, abuse, etc. Otherwise, understand that by watching, you are accepting what the video shows. You have the choice in life to say, no and not watch it. No one seems to understand that part. I’m not talking harmless entertainment, though you have the right to not like it either. You, as a consumer of information, have the right not to consume information that has the potential to harm. That is the harder part of freedom of speech. Some feel they must watch it. I mean everyone else is. What this does is gives it at least surface credibility. You don’t have to and if you don’t those things will tend to disappear. I’m essentially saying to make good choices of what you follow and do. Your choices are important!
So, that was my soap box talk for the week. I think that there are thousands of stories in every area. We can create a better ending. We can’t change this story or the past story. Once the story ends, we can’t change the actions, we can’t change the outcome. What we can do is learn and change future stories. There is still so much stigma that this girl was just allowed to die slowly, and on camera, from time to time to entertain. Mental illnesses and addictions are not appropriate for your entertainment. Instead of entertaining using that, learn about the situation. Learn what to do to help in that situation. If you don’t know, find out. Find out who can help them.
Much like the weather, you can’t change the situation. You can make better decisions what to do. Videoing someone with a mental illness for likes and follows and not obtaining help or treatment for them is not helping them. I know we can wrap it up in pretty words, show pictures to inform about mental illness…but using the person for likes and follows is ugly. We need more people to encourage people in their healing, not in their descent into the abyss. As Mark Twain said, “If you want to change the future, you must change what you’re doing in the present.” It’s important to consider this. If you want to give this girl’s life meaning, let it be deciding to find out more about treatments and addictions and mental health. Be determined to change the situation for another person. Don’t enable them, actually help. Give them a fair chance to change their future for the better. Don’t like and follow these things. The most important thing to do is ask what they are doing so that they can get their life on track. Ask what resources we need to work on getting available so that all people stand the chance of having a real and stable future. We are in an age of everything splashed across the internet, yet, on average, many know little or nothing about mental health or addictions. There is false information there as well. People still find it hugely entertaining to watch someone having meltdowns online rather than finding a good use for their time. Entertainment is wonderful, don’t get me wrong, but being entertained by watching someone’s life becoming a train wreck is not entertainment. We have one planet. We are the inhabitants. I would hate to think the world is getting so cold that they would find entertainment value in the death of a human being. It is sad that people would unwittingly enable someone on a path to disaster. We are given a mind to think with and a heart to feel with. I hope that this poor girl’s death will become a battle cry to learn how to treat each other with respect and not make other’s lives worse. I hope it will help people to be more determined to make people’s futures better.
Thanks for listening to my stream of consciousness podcast and/or reading my blog post and thanks for your interest in A & J PEI Treasures!
Just one more thing. I have one of my children’s e-books up for a 2021 TCK award Category is General Non-Fiction https://www.tckpublishing.com/2021-readers-choice-voting-page/ . The Big Kids Magical Path to Colours in Nature (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B093K2FN4M/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_GBTXKZW5EVAX2C92PCY1). If you have a moment, we could use some votes. The contest ends November 13. I want to thank all those who vote for your help!
I have finally gotten out my latest e-book which is The Big Kid’s Magical Path to Insects in Nature. It is available via Smashwords and I’m affiliate there (https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/?ref=ejstoo) in a variety of formats and through Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09KKWT9ZD)!
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Keep watching for more e-books and more formats! We’re always working on something! Currently have all my e-books up on Smashwords and I am an Affiliate on Smashwords (https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1112196?ref=ejstoo). I now am going to work on getting all my e-books updated on Amazon. This consists of updating the end matter that has changed due to changes in my social media!