I’m being advised that I should not talk about my mental illness on my blog. I am being told this not by my priest (who I answer to) but by someone with a substantial position in Catholic media who has a mental issue himself and who believes I am hurting myself by talking about it. I am told by this person that no one will take me seriously if I talk about my mental illness. He is, apparently, telling me this for “my own good.”
When I replied that I am going to continue talking about this issue because it is important that we discuss these issues in the Church regarding disorder and identity, he asked that I forward his emails to my producer/employer, Rebecca Diserio. I then reminded him that he has her email and he can send her whatever he chooses to send her. He did. He made his case to my employer that I should stop talking about my mental illness.
It’s pretty frustrating that someone with dollar power in Catholic media is emailing your employer to tell her you should shut up about the things you are saying on your private blog. I posted the above information on my Facebook page and was accused of slander.
Earlier today, I gave Rebecca my log-in information for my Fidelis email so that she can see some other exchanges I have had.
There are countless mentally ill people who are frustrated that there is no such thing (officially) as a mentally ill saint in the Catholic Church, and that there is almost no teaching on how to deal with disorders that cause horrible sufferings that lead people to suicide and that affect the ability to reason.
I am told constantly, in politics, that the world is becoming a more barbaric place. My Catholic friends who struggle in a HOLY MANNER with mental illness feel, for whatever reasons, that they are left in dark corners to be kicked aside by ignorant people who believe them to be freaks while “gays” are treated with kid gloves. I’ve felt that in a big way myself, and have been in the crisis unit — suicidal — more than once because of it. I am told that I do not “really” have Bipolar Disorder and Asperger and that I am never “really” suicidal. I just make that stuff up to “manipulate” people….they say.
Sooner or later, the Church is going to have to address mental disorder in a big way. The Church is going to have to listen to faithful Catholics with mental illness talk about finding our identity in Christ instead of in disorder. You can listen or you can continue to kick people aside and make us feel that if we say we have a mental disorder then our reputations will be ruined. The “gays” have come out, and because the “gays” have come out, the mentally ill Catholics need to come out and defend our identity in Christ, not disorder.
Regardless of what happens, I do not have any intentions at this time to shut up. If you don’t like what I say here, blogs are free. Go blog about it somewhere and tell me how much you think I should shut up. Do it in public. By all means, do a show about it! Call me crazy on your show! Just don’t whisper in the halls about me. I’m tired of the dark corners, and so are a lot of other mentally ill people out there who are pushed into them constantly.
St. Germaine Cousin, pray for us.