About me
Archive
About me

Our children dying because of our embarrassment

close

Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 14 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 14 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and write about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 14 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find utterly cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

'Depressed child' (from The Observer)The Observer reports today that a leaked report shows that the NHS is ‘failing our children’ through a lack of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS). And how.

One quarter of the country does not have crisis teams for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. That is beyond belief. If the report was that we didn’t have ambulances to pick up children in 25% of the country, nobody would accept it, because we know children would die. Newsflash: The lack of crisis teams means children are dying.

Imagine for a second that, god forbid, your child is standing on your roof and threatening to jump and kill himself. Who do you call? In 25% of the country, there’s no-one to help. Imagine your teenager suddenly has horrific hallucinations of millions of spiders coming to kill him. In 25% of the country, there’s no-one to help. Both of these children might kill themselves, because in 25% of the country, there’s no-one to help – and all because we’re pulling funding from such services to serve the less common but more palatable diseases like cancer.

We’re awful at providing mental health services in general, because we don’t like to talk about them. We like to imagine that the ‘crazy’ people are locked up, and brand every criminal going as having some mental health problem – usually schizophrenia – because we can’t accept that some people are just evil. Poor mental health and criminality become inextricably linked, and who wants to spend money helping criminals?

This is an utterly ludicrous situation. 9 million people in this country – one in six – has a mental health disorder right now. More than 1 in 3 of us will have a mental health disorder at some point – more than will experience cancer. Yet we’re cutting the amount spent on mental health services. Where’s the logic?

The situation is worse for children, because as repulsive as society finds the idea of an adult with mental illness, the idea of a child with it is far worse. When was the last time some do-good charity collecter asked you for money for children with cancer? And when the last time they asked you for money for children with serious mental health problems requiring treatment? The latter is 56 times more common. Yet in some parts of the country, there are no Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services at all.

We need to get over ourselves and face these issues, otherwise our own children will continue to suffer. And there’s a pretty huge chance it will be yours next.

This 906th post was filed under: Health, News and Comment, Politics.

Recently published posts




Random posts from the archive

New shirt / 14 January 2019

Respond carefully to this abhorrent attack / 08 July 2005

Grammar lessons are wrong for writers / 19 January 2005

John Spencer has died / 17 December 2005

Star Wars / 25 July 2004

Photo-a-day 238: Rooftops of Newcastle / 25 August 2012




Comments and responses

Trackback from elsewhere on the site



14:15
28th December 2006.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Jamie Oliver: Get Dead


Trackback from elsewhere on the site



07:46
14th March 2007.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Reform of the Mental Health Act


Trackback from elsewhere on the site



09:01
16th July 2007.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Embarrassment about mental health costs lives


Trackback from elsewhere on the site



00:42
2nd April 2008.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Johnson’s crazy screening plan


Trackback from elsewhere on the site



12:25
6th January 2010.

This post has been referenced by another on this site:
sjhoward.co.uk » Kids’ Mental Health Services and the Recession




Compose a new comment

I'm not taking comments on my blog any more, so I'm afraid the opportunity to add to this discussion has passed.


The content of this site is copyright protected by a Creative Commons License, with some rights reserved. All trademarks, images and logos remain the property of their respective owners. The accuracy of information on this site is in no way guaranteed. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author. No responsibility can be accepted for any loss or damage caused by reliance on the information provided by this site. This site uses cookies - click here for more information.