mental illness on the streets

I’m a romanticist, Not in a nostalgic sense nor in a psychotic sense, but just someone he carries romanticism in his heart. It has to do with hope, on the one hand, and a sleazy kind of cynicism on the other. I love reality for what it is, but also the reality as it should be: without human blood flowing through African rivers, without the mentally ill who are condemned to a life on the streets. I still take the world as it is, with all its misery, diseases, villains, heroes and saints. I do not want to live in another era. Hippies are boring and nostalgia is just fun for a short while. I do not like to fantasize, but I do like daydreaming. I do no build castles in the air.
—  Jeff Buckley
The Wall Street Journal Article!

For those of you who maybe don’t follow Misophonia pages on Twitter or Facebook, you may have missed this article written by Elizabeth Bernstein for The Wall Street Journal. Unfortunately this is yet another case of people with misophonia being poorly represented in the media.

They say any publicity is good publicity, and sometimes this may be true. Unfortunately Bernstein’s article has caused quite the upset on Facebook and Twitter. Unfortunately, whenever confronted about her article or the research that went into it, we are met with this result:

Currently she is blocking or ignoring everyone who makes a comment publicly regarding her article. Although the entire tone of the article seems ignorant and facetious, not all of the offensive comments come from Bernstein herself. Some of the negative comments are also coming from Monica Wu, a clinical psychology graduate student who supposedly did a study on Misophonia in 2014. From researching the study, my own personal impression is that her quotes in the article have nothing to do with the actual results of the study, but rather come from her own misinformed opinion. 

The tone of her comments in the article come across as offensive and ignorant, whether they were meant to come across that way or not. Here are quotes from the article that I personally find the most offensive. 

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If you can’t stand the sound of someone’s chewing, does that person need to close his or her mouth? Or do you? Experts say you do. Yes, some people have bad manners. But you can’t make everyone else change the way they eat just because it bothers you. What Experts? Who are you quoting? I find it difficult to believe that an “expert” on any subject revolving around mental health would say something sounding so arrogant.

The experts are clear: The person who is annoyed by the sounds is the one who needs to change and learn coping skills. If others accommodate you by changing the way they eat, they are only enabling you.You don’t think we try to learn coping skills? We spend our entire lives after getting misophonia developing coping skills. And by “enabling” do you mean “supporting” ?

It is never a good idea to tell someone else their chewing is bugging you.Because lying to everyone you care about it obviously the best way to handle misophonia instead of being open and honest with people and gaining their respect. Trust me, lying and staying silent doesn’t work out for you in the long run. 

Don’t run away. You should avoid “temporary Band-Aids,” says Ms. Wu, of the University of South Florida. If you always put on headphones or move to another room, you aren’t fully participating in the relationship. The idea is to learn to tolerate the symptoms.So when someone afflicted with misophonia is literally digging their own nails into their skin to stop from screaming or physically attacking the person triggering them it’s not okay to leave the room and calm down? Sounds perfectly logical to me. In addition, studies have proven that un-controlled exposure makes symptoms worse.

Tell yourself that it isn’t the other person’s fault. And that you want to be able to eat with your loved one, she says.Well that would be all fine and dandy if hearing a trigger didn’t immediately set off a fight or flight panic response in the body that makes it very difficult to think or focus on anything other than the effect the trigger has on you. Thanks for the advice! 

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All of these comments, mixed with the general tone of the article come off as offensive, rude, and ignorant towards sufferers of misophonia. Unfortunately we may never know whether the article was meant to come across this way, or if it was simply distasteful writing. Bernstein blocks and ignores everyone attempting to learn more about the article or where she got her information. 

The key here is to spread truthful, informative, and empathetic information about misophonia to the general public so we can be better represented and understood instead of an article like this. I’m very sorry to see articles like this popping up. One would think that people are more empathetic and aware of their own ridiculously misinformed statements in 2015. 

For anybody wanting to get in contact with Elizabeth Bernstein, her email is: 
elizabeth.bernstein@wsj.com

You may also contact the Wall Street Journal or leave a comment directly on their website. We can’t keep letting things like this happen and get swept under the rug. It seems that whenever a major media outlet bashes misophonia or presents misinformation we never get an apology. If we don’t spread the truth about misophonia and stand up for ourselves, who will?

I’m a romanticist, not in a nostalgic sense nor in a psychotic sense, but just someone he carries romanticism in his heart. It has to do with hope, on the one hand, and a sleazy kind of cynicism on the other. I love reality for what it is, but also the reality as it should be: without human blood flowing through African rivers, without the mentally ill who are condemned to a life on the streets. I still take the world as it is, with all its misery, diseases, villains, heroes and saints. I do not want to live in another era. Hippies are boring and nostalgia is just fun for a short while. I do not like to fantasize, but I do like daydreaming. I do no build castles in the air.
—  Jeff Buckley

“ I mean people still shouldn’t throw rocks at other people though”

Yeah? 

Well people also shouldn’t shoot and kill 12 year olds with airsoft guns 2 seconds after they arrive on a scene. 

People also shouldn’t shoot 7 year old girls in their sleep. 

People shouldn’t crush the larynx and nearly sever the spinal chord of a young man then deny him medical attention for over 30 minutes and through three stops on the way to the station.  

People shouldn’t shoot a man who is running away 8 times in the back. 

A line of people shouldn’t shoot a mentally ill homeless man on the street for brandishing a knife. 

People shouldn’t strangle a man to death by putting him in a choke hold despite desperate pleas that he can’t breath. 

Unfortunately people don’t tend to do what they should do, do they?

Idk guys but my parents taught me to be discreet in public. When I was curious about something or someone they told me to whisper the question if I had to, or wait until that person walked by, never point, stare and generally be sensitive.

This bit of education is lost of many young kids these days (I’m not talking about kids with mental illnesses). They gawk and ask their parents loud enough for the whole street to hear, and they voice their negative opinions right in a person’s face. Wtf parents? Do you think a person with disabilities (for example) doesn’t feel bad or uncomfortable when little kids point at them? Educate your progeny!!

I was going to say nothing, but I decided to say something instead…

Maks has never posted photos of random strangers on instagram before so that he and his 400,000 followers could discuss their problems & shame them.  It’s clear to me he thought it was ok to do so in this case because he views the homeless as a special breed of not-quite-humans.

And it’s also pretty obvious from his “I rest my case” comment that what he thought when he saw this person was “I’m better than him because I would never choose to be like that.”  

It doesn’t take that much awareness to know that severe mental illness is often at play when people live on the streets because they are unable to live conventionally.  Addiction (often in conjunction with mental illness) and physical disability are also common factors.  Maks’ life has been blessedly free of all of those things, but that doesn’t excuse him from having empathy for people who have not been so lucky.  

I think it was Aaron Sorkin, a recovering alcoholic, who once said that if he gives money to a homeless person who in turn spends it on alcohol, then maybe he’s helped that person get what they needed to make it through another night.  I can’t even imagine what it would be like to have a life like that. 

I’ve said several times that despite some of his trashy behavior I thought Maks was essentially a good guy, but I don’t think that anymore.  I think he’s an asshole who lacks basic human decency.  

So right now I feel like Maks can take his attitude and his abs and his Blue Steel selfies and go home to his Barbie doll girlfriend whose biggest contribution to the world is showing everyone her bronzed ass cheeks, and fuck himself.  I don’t even know if I can find humor in their antics anymore.

our friends at channel 9 have been released from jail in Lebanon
apparently they have been ‘disheartened’ at the lack of support from the australian public. apparently we need to ‘consider all the facts’ and ‘make a fair judgment’
because that’s exactly what they do at channel 9. they consider all the facts and the variables when they are chasing a mentally ill man down the street because of a centrelink payment, or a struggling single mother
it always is, and always has been, trial by australian media
what goes around comes around