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Mental Health Issues in Minority Communities

Tell a story the community can resonate with that dispels mental health myths. Stories should focus on describing mental health in a culturally relevant,compelling, impressionable and appropriate manner that dispels myths about mental health conditions that impact minority communities, and inspires the community to speak up about mental health in a non-stigmatizing manner. Stories should incorporate facts from the Myth vs. Fact sheet attached and
dispel the myths.

I need to write an essay story no more than 3-pages about mental health that
- educate a minority group (small minority groups) about mental health
- help eliminate myths about mental health
- creatively tells a story, fictional or non-fictional and makes it easy for the
community to understand what mental health is
- use a myth vs fact from the attachment
- weave in cultural aspects from the minority group community


Solution Preview

This story is real. It is based on my experiences with people who have mental health issue in and around the city of Milwaukee, WI. Since it is anecdotal, there will be few references.

While working on the medical team at Mendota Mental Health Institution, I sat on a committee that brought mental health professionals, people diagnosed with mental health problems, and families together to air their grievances, generate ideas, and give each other support. I'll call the people with mental health issues "patients" to make it easier to identify them in this story. The most common complaint from the patients is how often they were treated as subhuman by so many others especially law enforcement personnel.

I am going to address all of the concerns here coming from one basic premise, one I hope all people will one day adopt: in the end, psychiatric issues are neurological issues. Prior to the 1990's (The Decade of the Brain), the majority of professionals in the mental health system treated the mind (as distinct from the brain) as a black box: we know what goes in and what comes out but have little idea of what goes on inside to produce that final result ("results" being speech and actions). If you were a non-Freudian psychiatrist, you would treat the symptoms and hope for the best. If you were Freudian, you would look for an underlying psychic cause and talk the person out of it. Freudian psychiatry and psychology are now considered obsolete for very good reasons.

Now we are beginning to understand that psychiatric symptoms are the result of neurological disturbances. The research impetus came out of The Decade of the Brain and continues in earnest at places like the Amen Clinics. Check it out yourself: it's a bit commercial (Dr. Amen has a manager of all things!).

Myth No. 1
Mental illness is something that only happens to
"other people."
The patients at the meetings came from all walks of life. ...

Solution Summary

Mental health issues in minority communities are provided.