Mental health is in fashion, by Irene Jaume

If you look at the profiles on social networks of people called ‘influencers’ and many famous people you can see that mental health has become one of the star issues. Go ahead, I will not be the one to defend someone for using their loudspeaker to emit a awareness message, But I do have some questions: does it create a real conscience to emit these messages in a social network that, precisely, is a generator of constant anxiety? Is it useful that, in addition, these messages are emitted by people who with their publications produce frustration to their public – I am not saying that they do so expressly – because they cannot afford absolutely nothing of what they advertise and expose on a daily basis? And is it useful for those of us who cannot afford anything they expose to share and applaud these types of messages as if the publication had been made by anybody? I would say not.

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I do not believe that the anxiety, the upheavals or the crises of a person with real estate, who wears accessories, shoes and clothes that are worth six months of my rent or, in short, who has very favorable material conditions, is the same as that of my precarious neighbor or my evicted neighbor. What’s more, I think putting it in the same bag is trivialize a very serious problem in a perverse way that we have as a society. The phrase that says that money does not solve everything was invented by someone who had, because with money we can solve things or, at least, improve them.

Yes, mental health is in fashion, but talking about the material conditions of the population is not, and here I think is where the drama of the current situation lies. More investment in health, housing policies and public education, more contributions from those who have more for those who have less and who cannot afford to go to therapy or pay for treatment and a greater sense of interdependence, among others, I think they would help much more what to applaud ephemeral publications and empty of conscience … But full of posture.

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