More threads by HA


I have been trying to find a way to advocate for people like my son, who is at the severe end of the illness spectrum, and their families. It just seemed that this was a natural thing for me to do and it sure seemed like it would give me hope.

Recently I have found myself feeling much worse, instead of better. In a recent advocacy meeting with a high profile lawyer, I was very angry. He was very angry in return and of course I would be the loser in this situation because who the hell am I but just a mother who does not know what she is talking about. I don't remember some of the things I said and others did feel that my anger was perhaps out of line. I am embarrassed by this. I have had some very terrible experiences with lawyers and find it hard being in the presence of one who has strong civil libertarian views.

I have spoken with a friend who is a research psychiatrist who told me that I would not be very good in the policy arena because I am too biased. I felt that this friend did not understand my position.

I feel like it is just a lost cause and that maybe I should just give up on the far end of the spectrum issues and go with the more general advocacy issues. I have not seen a therapist for a few years and thought that maybe a therapist could help me become less emotional when dealing with situations that send me over the edge. I also am concerned that I would end up with a therapist who would not understand.

The only other solution I can think of is to just stay away from the advocacy side of things but this just makes me feel hopeless and want to just give up on all of it.

What do others think?
I am so sorry you're feeling worse about this. I guess my thoughts would be not to give up, but also to see a therapist to help you deal with this. I think you can offer a perspective that most people don't have.

What are the goals that you have?

I wish I could think of something helpful. I wish I could help more.


I think you may be right, Janet. The goal of this advocacy issue is the review of Community Treatment Orders (CTO's) in Ontario. A report with the reccommendations will be given by this lawyer. Everyone's views are to be considered.

Thanks for your thoughts. They were helpful.


I think the idea of having a therapist help you work through your feelings and find ways to control your emotions when in the thick of things is a very good idea. You have much to offer as an advocate that many other advocates cannot match. You have personal experience and are directly involved. That's a gift you can use to make life better for others. I'd hate to see you give it up, as many would lose that gift.
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