Thursday, January 31, 2008

Britney Spears and Politics

I know. I know. Everyone is getting tired of hearing about Britney Spear's issues.

So, I'm not actually going to talk about HER issues.

I am going to talk about the issue itself. I think it's safe to assume that she is experiencing some kind of mental illness or mental issue that appears to be preventing her from leading a typically normal life as a person and mother, family member and friend.

In a way I am glad the media is covering the issue. But they aren't covering it the way I'd actually like to see.

I'd like to see the media talk about mental illnesses themselves. I'd like to see the media bring attention to how hard it is to treat mental illness. And it's hard on for so many different reasons.

Access/wait lists for doctors are too long.

State budges aren't enough to assist in treatment options.

Not everyone has health insurance to cover the cost of medication and therapy.

If you are an adult, it becomes really hard to force you to seek treatment.

Not to compare Brittany to what happened at VA Tech last spring, but the truth is, if you are over 18, it becomes a lot harder to force treatment on you. There are confidentiality rules that prevent family members, friends, companies and schools from knowing you may even need the help.

Brittany appears to have the money to seek treatment and help, but it appears she won't, or is at least showing resistance to it. She also appears to have loving parents that want to support her, despite the frustration they must be experiencing, and the sadness of watching their child struggle privately and publicly.

But, like many with a mental illness, it's not her that is showing resistance.

It's the mental illness itself. And, in this country, mental illness too often wins and slowly engulfs it's victim. There are many victims: the person himself, his family and his friends. Mental illness effects many people in many different ways.

And like her, there are soooo many more out there suffering.

I'd like to know what all of the presidential candidates REALLY feel should be done with the mental illness system we have in America.

**please note, I am not diagnosing Britney Spears as having a mental illness, all statements regarding her are my interpretation of media reports.

Cross posted over at DCMetroMoms where I am a contributing writer.

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