What changes we need to prevent events like David Wesley Bobbitt?

Recently the beautiful scenic, South Okanagan Valley, now tarnished by, David Wesley Bobbitt.        Mr. Bobbitt, age 35, is in custody, but his offences are nightmarish to the peaceful area. With the community outrage many are actively signing a petition to seek maximum sentence.

I heard people murmur sentiments like; “You have to have something wrong with your head to do things like that.” or ” I hope he gets lock away for a long time.”

If the public wants to have a serious intervention in crimes with these violent nature, then they need to be adding their personal voice to the issues of mental health. Any unstable mind, left untreated, or unattended to is a very explosive bomb of self harm or harm to others waiting to happen. What is the bully issue? Violence in the home, usually the first issue. Family violence leads to the number of mental health issues, that left untreated COULD lead to later violent crimes. Spousal abuse –

One guy made this statement to me, “ What guy in his right mind would beat a woman?”

Exactly, abuse, aggression and violent acts of any kind are the product of an unstable mind. A mind that requires help, medical attention and professional supervision, without this help that unstable mind over the years, COULD develop into a major violent crime. I’m sure the advocates for Mental Health will be all over me for voicing my concern and opinion.

I have a daughter who’s diagnosed schizophrenia. I watch the reaction of emotions that displays on someone face, when they learn of her illness,but I also know that education and understanding is the only way to combat fear. The other factor in fighting fear are strong preventative laws and polices. Yes my daughter is of that 3% of the population of mentally illness that have a violent component. Do I think she is capable of violence to herself or others ? I have no doubt that if she was unstable, she will harm herself. Do I believe that she could harm another? NO, but if she wasn’t taking her medications, and was suffering under an altered perception of reality, that was all consuming and totally real to her. I truly don’t know, how she would react to any situation. This is my fear and every other parent’s fear out there, that has a child suffering from a major mental illness.

You can’t imagine what it is like living with this fear, fighting for laws, and polices to change ,ONLY to prevent tragic events from happening. At every turn, you fight, the very people, who are there to help you.

All the professionals, advocate, government agencies, and social service organizations, will not support the idea; of mandatory mental health assessment for any act of aggression, preventative mental health policies, nor do they allow any 72 hr evaluations holds in the emergency room,when one is brought in by loved one or police, without a psychiatric doctor’s sign off. These are all preventative measures to protect the public from an unstable mind, that might cause danger to themselves and others.

Canada has great laws, after the fact laws! Or tragically after someone’s life has been harmed.

Mr. Bobbitt, will face his court day. The people will seek maximum sentence. But does it really protect the public? He will get out of jail in 8-10 years. Will he have received help for his unstable mind? Will he been in some kind of treatment therapy for his violent nature? Are there LAWS or POLICIES that are held accountable to these issues. Our perception of serene and peaceful place to live  – Is now in serious question.

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Shame on the Christy Clark Liberal Government !

I heard a radio advertisement yesterday , by the BC Liberal Government.

If you want the new Lowered HST vote NO. The BC government will lower the HST from 12% to 10%. Or you can vote YES and go back to paying the old GST and PST at 12%.”

 Last time I checked omission of the facts -Is still a lie. Food was never taxed by PST and children’s school supplies had a PST tax exemption . “How is it the HST is a better deal than the old tax system when it comes to families that have children to feed?”

Every-time the average Family in BC spends $100.00 dollars on food in BC , they will be robbed $10.00.  $10.00 will still buy 2 gals of milk. Milk that is an important factor to promote healthy development  in children. Basic wage is $8.75  less than the dollar amount  taxed on every $100.00. Inflation at it’s best.

“Yes, the BC government cares for children and their families”  statement by Christy Clark.

The Liberal Government has only added a tax to child poverty in our province! Shame!

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Dear Editor and Journalist;

This mother, extents a personal challenge to all editors and journalist. Ask the party leaders and respective candidates, “ What they plan to do with the national wide lack of health care dollars allocated to mental health?”

Mental Health Week, May 2-9 2011, theme is,”mind + body fitness”. Evidence states that with early detection and treatment, 80% of people effected with mental illness will have a full recovery. Surprisingly only 1 out of 5 children needing treatment receive treatment. Is this acceptable?

In many Canadian cities there isn’t an adolescence psychiatric unit or a doctor who specializes in youth psychiatry.

3% of the population will have sever mental illness such as Bi-polar or Schizophrenia, but less than 1% will be diagnosed with cancer this year. Stats presented by the Canadian Mental Health Association of Canada.

Canada’s youth suicide rate the third highest in the industrialized world.

Suicide is the leading causes of death in ages 15-24 , second only to accidents

Schizophrenia is youth’s greatest dis-abler as it strikes most often in the 16 to 30 year age                                  group,

10-20% of youth are affected by a mental illness or disorder – the single most disabling                                      group of disorders worldwide.

I anticipate your participation in this fun personal challenge. Thank you for making mental health matter to you.

If you are a parent of a child with mental illness please copy and paste and send to your local and area news papers. Together we can make a difference.
Carrie-Ann

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Alex, MP that Cares.

I would like you all to know how supportive and helpful Alex Atamanenko, MP ,and his great team are. My daughter at 16 suffered a major psychotic break, now we are into our fifth year of the healing process and no where near recovery.

I have quit my job, three times to stay at home and be on suicide watch. To my surprise I couldn’t collect unemployment,you can receive money if you are home looking after someone with cancer by not a mental ill child. I applied to government to get child tax credit( which was denied twice). Having a sick child is very stressful, but what some might not know is getting treatment is very expensive. The year my daughter was hospitalized twice, and saw a doctor twice a month in Kelowna, which is a 2hrs drive, the cost of just gas and meals was $10,000.00. This cost is also documented by Dr.Stan Kutcher.

Alex and his team have helped me write letters, showed support by personal visit by me,listen to me as a cried into the phone with pure frustration, inquired to why I was denied tax credit,gave donations to mental health service groups, and used his own door to door paper to create awareness for mental health.

These are all examples of personal attention with a great heart; that all people serving our country in the way of politics– should be! Alex has been all of this and more. He has made me feel that me just an average person is important.

Alex you don’t just do the talk,— you do the walk. I am proud to say that yesterday I did receive my child tax credit cheque after 2 years of applying. So thank you very much, without people like you action would never get done. Thank you for making mental health and my family matter to you!!!

 

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Childhood Friendships Lost But Never Forgotten

Today I thought I would write about a different topic from my normal mental health issues.

I have to say, I was a late bloomer to the Facebook scene. I had numerous friends and family ask me to join up. Their comments were always the same,” it is so cool hooking up with people you knew in school but have lost over the years.”

I will have to admit they were right– It is great to see old friends married with families, to look at their children photos and see that childhood face you remember.

What really surprises me is how many people I remember as memorable or hold a special spot in my heart. When I think back on those specially people, it seems there specialness grew over the years of absents. Oh yes we have all aged, some aged more graceful than me,but what made each person special is still there.

There’s only three childhood friends I have stayed in contact with over my school years to adult life. Those friends have grown in a spot of adopted family members. My sisters who I love dearly and always will.

It is the passing through friends that truly amaze me. Those friends that were in a place in your life to make a small positive force in the growing up process. Many of those special friends have made contact with me, to my wonderful surprise they still have the ability to be so special.

From the person who always makes me smile. Or the person’s comment that always show me see the joy in living life. Then there is the one who is still the giant kids at heart. And lets not forget those people who have face adversity and won. Others I watch from a distance as I admire their personal strength. But the ones who really shock me are the ones that where just there when you needed comfort or maybe just a friend. They shock me because I feel so much comfort and joy from them, NOW as I did when I was a kid.

As these wonderful childhood friends add up. I wonder and only hope that I have been a special friend to someone in need over my years. So I will make a point to tell each special person, what a blessing they are to me. I’m thankful to have so many people who  made my childhood memories so warm, fuzzy, enjoyable, laughable and inspirational.

Thank you All xoxo

Carrie-Ann

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Hypocritical Actions of Local and Provincial Government

2009, BC provincial government placed a smoking ban on all  provincial parks. ON provincial government place a ban on smoking in your vehicle with a minor present. Now local government are placing bans on their parks and recreations.

I am a smoker, who desires to quit. Personally I agree, but I do  believe they infringe on human rights. Smoking cost our health care system, second-hand smoke harms the innocent. There are a number of other issues that place the public in harm’s way.

Mental health issues are littering our streets, cities, and placing a strain on all our social services. Drug and alcohol addictions create petty crime.

Did the government create laws for mandatory treatment or rehab? Is there stronger penalties or no tolerance laws? Is there Psyche evaluations done for first time addictions offenders and domestic violence?

Governments are unwilling to address this issues for many reasons. The main reason is they are afraid to infringe on human rights.

Governments always claim the smokers place the public at risk, and burden the health care dollars. This is true, but it is also true that Mental health, addictions and related issue place a larger strain on the tax payers dollars. Mental health, Addictions and related issue impose a greater threat the public safety.

I’d ask government to stop being so hypocritical and face up to the social issues Mental health. Stop the burden of debt.

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OK Comic OR Force that Be And God!!!

This girl is ready and willing to win a million plus lottery. I always said I would never be a winner, because the money and greed of money would turn me into a hateful person.

So up until very recently I never really bought any ticket in the hopes and dreams of winning. But today I am a different person.

The commercials are “Just Imagine”. Well lately I have been.  I will just lay out my dreams for you all.

First I would pay off mortgage so that is 230,000, then I would buy a large property with a lodge or motel. I would turn this property in a place of rest and recovery for youth 16-27 that suffered a psychotic break.

It is sad to think that we have loads of these places for our beloved pets and wild kingdom animals. But none for our naked humans. LOL

This property would be different as it would be a one stop,place where all community serves and organizations could provide programing. Youth could stay in short periods of stay, parents could get respite, knowing their youth are happy and well looked after.

Programs would be re learning social skills, upgrading lost education skills, learning the importance of daily structure with routine, sports,peer group therapy, then lastly learn valuable job skills.

The property would have a social enterprise that the youth could gain value job skills. The business profits could be then used to maintain the buildings and property. With the future goal to pay for the entire program.

Wow imagine, no duplication of programs, programs that could meet everyone’s needs, peer support that could grow into valuable  friendships, learned job skills so one could have confidence to seek employment, and a facility that could support and maintain it’s own property. No burden to the tax dollars. WIN-Win for everyone.

But what else would I do? I do know what my last step will be. Can you guess? Friends this is a blog everyone can comment back to, so I will be looking forward to comments.

While I sing “If I had a Million Dollars”, and lets not forget to sing loudly,” I want to be a Billionaire sooo freekin Bad!!!”

Cheers Carrie-Ann

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Armed Home Invasion In Osoyoos

An Osoyoos couple told police they woke up in the early hours of Jan. 5 to find a man inside their house. The masked intruder, armed with what looked like an assault rifle, demanded money, was given a small quantity of cash and left the house.

Harjevan Singl Gill, was known by police. When I see this statement I always wonder, “What is known?”

I witnessed a local 34 year old mans court appearance in September 2010. “He was known by police.”– 99 police calls in one year!

Why don’t laws reflect preventative action? Isn’t it more cost effect to prevent crime?

When is it time to say,” What we are doing is getting us anywhere and other action needs to occur.”

Right now there is a huge debate in regards to preventative action in mental health and addictions cases  before harm is caused.

Most petty crimes are related to addiction, therefore are mental health issues. In the case of the 34 year old man, alcohol addiction was related to all his offenses, but did a judge issue rehab? No! Did a judge call for a psychological evaluation in relationship to addictions?No!

This 34 year old man was released from jail November and in December was placed back in jail.

Did we make any progress? Did we save tax payers dollars?


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Is Your Income Tax Refund Considered An Income?

Do you consider an income tax refund as income, that you claim? Well according to social assistance it is.

People living on social assistance, are NOT just people who find themselves out of work. People with physical and mental functioning disabilities, and people suffering from major mental health issues earn a social assistance income, called disability pension. Did you know that this disability is subject to claim any income tax credit as income? An income deducted from their next monthly cheque.

A single person on maxim disability assistance is receiving about $930.00 a month. Rent and utilities  $630.00,that leaves a person $300.00 a month for food, clothing, bus expenses to get to and from doctors and support programs.

The Canadian government decides to give you a tax credit refund. A bonus is how the receiver should feel, they just won the tax credit lottery it doesn’t happen that often, but no!!!— you have to claim that money.

These poor people can barely survive from month to month, even with a visit to the food bank, now the next month even less. They still have to pay 13% HST on everything they buy.

This is just cruel treatment of the impoverished, disabled or the mentally ill to give in one hand and take with the other hand. Is BC not a province that cares for its poor and disabled or is BC a province of money grabbing Liberal Government that care nothing for the poor while they earn very healthy pensions?

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Tips to Enjoy Mental Healthly Christmas Days

Christmas is the most highly anticipated event of our calender year. As I remember back over our family Christmas; I can see that the stressful level of the festive season cause one or two emotional  outburst– that  were diffidently NOT enjoyable.

Our family now looks at events from mental health perspective to minimize the stress that this season naturally causes. We sat down as a family and listed the most important traditions and the amount of stress level attached to our treasured family traditions.

Christmas Past:

I remember buying presents, throughout the fall months, trying to find a hiding place so the kids wouldn’t peek and spoil the surprise.  Now I don’t know, how this works out- for the rest of you, but for me this never panned out. My kids would spend hours sneaking around the house to find my special hiding place, which to my major disappointment they usually found. Then there was the sleepless nights and grumpy mornings– when is it Christmas. I don’t know how many years I tried to achieve this impossible goal of stash and hide.

The joy of seeing the beautiful presents wrapped under the Christmas tree. Is my one special tradition. How can one not enjoy this sight? Oh! How impossible- not to shake and rattle  those gifts, then to try your special abilities at guessing. Only the hated repeated pleas of “Please, MOM! Can we open just one!”-spoiled my view of the mountain of gifts under the tree.

This was the single most stressful tradition for my kids. Imagine a person who is full of natural anxiety, now add this by 10. That is the amount of anxiety people with mental health issue have around  surprises. With a crushed heart over my 40 year old Season tradition, we had to come up with a new solution.

Christmas Present:

Usually about the last week before Christmas, we take a set amount of money, everyone makes a list then we buy all the stuff we can get. There is some major benefits to doing this; we never over spend, there usually is some excellent deals to be had,not a lot of wrapping paper to buy, which is Eco friendly then lastly, it is all done and over with in one shopping spree.

Christmas Future:

Now, we have a stress minimized Christmas, with usually a few wrapped presents for Mom’s Tree. We usually buy a family game, which we wake up to open and play Christmas morning.

I must say, the thought of changing family Christmas traditions horrified me, but I was pleasantly surprised. Now our seasonal days just flow with out negative events. We have more time to visit with friends and family. There is hardly a person disappointed about the impossible gift to find, because if IT couldn’t be found, other gift idea took ITS place. The overall the dreaded Christmas meeting expectations is  eliminated.

As a Family we would like to Wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Season. We pray that your Christmas stress is minimized, with only wonderful traditions, that build your family’s memory box to overflowing.

Merry Christmas to All. xoxo

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