What is your opinion? Mental health ed? What would this look like, ideally?

Here’s the link:

http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/dec/25/teach-mental-health-in-primary-schools-says-advisory-group

This has been proposed in the UK. I am wondering what readers think. Should we educate kids about Mental Health? Should we call it that, or something else?

Remember, there are different definitions out there of health. Wellness is defined differently. I’m not talking about common conversation nor the literary meaning, but in terms of public health or health education, we have to think on what precisely we mean and think carefully on terminology, not only legally, but also implied meaning.

I do think MH ed is a good idea. However, at the grade school level it should consist of the following:

If you have trouble now, you should talk about it with someone you trust, since later in life you might be bothered much more about it.

If you have difficulties you feel you cannot solve, speak to your parents, your teacher or an adult you trust. Your friends are a good resource and are sometimes, the best listeners, but children do not have as much power as adults to step in when necessary.

If your friend has trouble, do not pull away. Instead, be a very good friend, draw closer and be a good listener. If you feel it’s too much to handle, go together to an adult who might help you sort things out.

If you see fire or smell smoke get away from the fire and call the fire department. If you can’t cross the street because of too much traffic, find an adult or crossing guard to help you.  If you get mad, don’t hit. Peaceable negotiation is the best way.

Much of this is often covered in other classes. Kids should be learning “Say no to drugs, don’t do risky sex, etc,” which I believe is already being taught.

In first grade that really should be the extent of it, in my opinion. I don’t think “diagnosis” should EVER be taught. Except as a memory of an ancient, barbaric way of thinking.

What is your opinion?

 

4 thoughts on “What is your opinion? Mental health ed? What would this look like, ideally?”

  1. Julie, I think it would be a terrible idea. They might give lip service to some vague notion of personal autonomy in “choosing which services to avail themselves of,” but it’ll just be greatest betrayal of trust and giveaway of sheep to the wolves ever, IMHO. Did you ever see the glossy, industry-designed pamphlet about Abilify that the NHS distributed to British schoolchildren? It’s on the late Ben Hanson’s (R.I.P) dr. bonkers web site. I’ll try to dig it up.

    1. I agree. I tweeted to the person who posted it that it should only be done without “diagnosis.” And as I described. Just to state “go to an adult.” In my plan, I didn’t mention doctor nor therapist. I believe in children’s rights but we all know children do not have rights nor power. This is why in cases of bullying, adults should be brought in, not “treatment.” So if you see bullying, go to an adult. This should be the extent of it. Also, awareness that abuse should be talked about now, rather than haunt us later. No way does this mean “counselor” since a person is better off simply acknowledged than psychiatrized.

    1. Oh my god. Dear kiddies, One pill to make you larger. In fact, much larger. You also get bonus diabetes and you get to sleep all through the school day. School is boring anyway. Take your pills and life won’t be so boring, nor last much longer, no worries at all! If you’re Pooh with all the extra weight, good luck being pulled back out of that rabbit hole.

Feedback and comments welcome!