The trees are about to show us how lovely it is to let things go.

Nancy Boucher has graciously shared an activity that speaks to the heart of what so many of us need: how to advocate!  How do we reach those who need to hear what we have to say?  Our lives have been uprooted by mental illness and we are tired of running into community blocks and obstacles.  

This readership is full of primary sources- folks with firsthand experience.  The total number of years of firsthand experience-of information and knowledge of what it is to live with a mental illness, what it is to care for a loved one with a mental illness, what is needed to treat someone with a mental illness is easily 1, 381 years plus.  It is so important to recognize and apply the power/ and influence that your first hand field experience with mental illness gives you that can help guide treatment and support forward for all those affected by mental illness.  LET your voices be heard resoundingly!
 
The most influential advocacy prescriptions you could write are personal ones.  Before you begin writing -let us always remember, and let us work together to spread the word that:


 1. Nobody did anything wrong by getting sick with a mental illness.
 2. You did nothing wrong.
 
Advocacy is TO SUPPORT OR ARGUE FOR A CAUSE OR POLICY.  Advocacy aims to influence decisions, and who better than those of us with lived experience?
 
Create a prescription to authoritatively put forward to treatment providers, to community, state, and national agency officials, to elected official , to mental health court officials and more.  And I encourage you to send your prescriptions by snail mail!  Let’s slow people down, let’s flood their mailboxes, and get their attention.  Let’s keep our postal workers actively employed!
 
Here are few examples of advocacy prescriptions from other groups Nancy Boucher has met with:
 

  • available housing with support staff on site
  • community integration services
  • community case management services to support and transport to all medical appointments etc.
  • mobile or local emergency support for mental illness medical crises

Greetings:

I am a person with firsthand experience with mental illness.

Below are advocacy prescriptions that I have written, based on what I have learned is essential for treatment and support.

(Thank you for)/Please give my recommendations your focused and serious attention.

I am (circle all that apply):

  • a person with a mental illness
  • a family member
  • a treatment provider
  • a friend
  • other :

 The number of years of my first hand experience in the role(s) above is : _____________

1st Prescription:
Where I live, the availability of the services described in this prescription currently are:
___not available
___rarely available
___usually available
 
Barriers that need to be overcome to make the services described in this prescription accessible are listed below :
 
 2nd Prescription:
Where I live, the availability of the services described in this prescription currently are:
___not available
___rarely available
___usually available
 
Barriers that need to be overcome to make the services described in this prescription accessible are listed below :
 
3rd Prescription:
Where I live, the availability of the services described in this prescription currently are:
___not available
___rarely available
___usually available
 
Barriers that need to be overcome to make the services described in this prescription accessible are listed below :
  
As you read my words, just imagine that you are walking in my shoes and you will know how to respond.
 
Thank you.
 
My contact info for a reply:


 When you visit our website, you can click on links to information, services, and resources.  Two new pages include one that brings you directly to where our booklets are!  https://growastrongfamily.org/booklets-available-on-amazon/  The other page is a direct link to purchase cards for promoting insight and reminders about how to get through the labyrinth of loving someone with a mental illness.

Replanting Lives Group: Tues Oct 8 from 10:30-noon will be at the Bedford Public Library (7 Mudge Way, Bedford MA) and   Weds/Oct 9  7-8:30 pm at the Bedford COA, (12 Mudge Way, Bedford, MA).  FREE.  Registration preferred (scroll down the page):  https://growastrongfamily.org/replanting-lives/Remember to take good, loving care of yourself!