The Ledger-- a publication from Lakeland, Florida-- near Tampa-- recently reports that assertiveness-training will be provided for consumers at a local mental health system. This training will address the passivity and "learned helplessness" which people with mental illness not infrequently exhibit, for example in the reported tendency of 'regulars' at a drop-in center there to ask-permission to use the restroom. To this intervention effort I would like to address this entry.
This web-log-- I reiterate-- and all writing perpetuated under this aegis-- endeavors to "say the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me Truth." Therefore I shall endeavor to describe this worthy effort for all mental health consumers not only from OUR side, but from as many other "sides" as my admittedly limited experiential perspective will permit.
First-things-first: I think it the best-of-ideas that there is now a flesh-and-blood movement afoot in brick-and-mortar mental health places to get the notion of consumer-self-assertion "off the ground." It is absolutely true that numerous consumers exhibit "learned helplessness," and there are times when essentially for strategic reasons I have shown such tendencies. Self-assertion-- as an aspect of self-determination-- is long-overdue for mental health consumers as a cohort/group.