Rethinking Life with Schizophrenia: Not Your Grandmother’s Story


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“Not Your Grandmother’s Tea Party.”
“Not Your Grandmother’s Buick.”
The Food Network said it and so did GM, to make a point. Poor grandma. She had such a staid, restrictive experience. But not us. We’re freer, whether it’s chef Giada De Laurentiis putting a modern spin on stuffy tea parties of old or General Motors regenerating the Buick Regal. Can’t we say the same about schizophrenia?

Grandma might have had to think about lobotomies or freezing water therapy, anything to scramble or shock the symptoms away. If that didn’t work, institutionalization (or an attic). But not us. This generation still faces the shaming stigma of old but the Internet, self-publishing, and mental health advocacy groups are enabling people to whittle it down. Sites like Mad in America offer many different points of view on the mental illness journey and the possibility of a restored life. At the least, the many writers and speakers aren’t afraid to share their story, something grandma never did.

This is Schizophrenia Awareness Week 2015. Rethink Mental Illness, a charity and advocacy organization in England, has released this video, to reform attitudes about mental illness. In the video four people talk about the stigma they’ve experienced along with the ways they have learned to live with their illness. They discuss ways to cope and to function by using combinations of remedies such as talk therapy, exercise, medication, and mindfulness meditation. They want you to stop thinking like grandma so the stigma she lived with won’t be yours.

Rethink Mental Illness wants you to grab hold of something new. They want you to have hope.
You can also view the video at: