I hate inequality. One of the big motivators for me writing this blog is that no one should have to go through what I did either as a child when I was the sole carer for my alcoholic mother but also for the horrible treatment I've received because of my disability. And yes, my mental health condition is a disability - I didn't realise it at first but as I shared on this Huffington Post article there are quite a lot of us out there with mental health issues that affect our quality of life.
Rather than going to celebrate a very successful summer show, I ended up feeling really low. It was all because the 2nd, 3rd and 4th lanes of the M40 were closed. For a few miles overhead signs had indicated the lanes were closed with arrows indicating that lane to merge into the next lane until the red X appeared. I was in lane 1. I was stationary only to discover that it was because all manner of vehicles were storming down the carriageway, through the red X signs and then barging into lane 1. Worryingly people seem oblivious that passing a Red X is a criminal offence. It should cost you 6 points on your license and a £60 fixed fine. Yet no one, as far as I can see, is enforcing it. Enforcing it, would pay for itself and generate extra funds for 'more bobbies on the beat' as well as encouraging safer use of our roads.
As you may have seen from past posts here, I am a lollipop man and I witness all sorts of behaviour on the roads. There was a time when I reported every vehicle I saw that failed to stop when signalled to do so or where the driver was clearly on their phone. What I find infuriating is that I can see the solution to this but I cannot do it or use it. How simple would it be to have a camera that I then edit the footage for each offence and auto-generate a warning letter or fine, Such a system much exists or even if I have to do it manually, it will still be worth it. "If you tolerate this, then your children will be next". Does something hideous have to happen before we will take action and actually bring justice on those behaving likes twonks?
I cannot go into much detail about my particular incident on the crossing but to say I signalled a minibus to stop and steadily and safely it did. Within seconds I had spotted the vehicle inches from my back and was shocked to hear the driver hurling abuse at me including calling me "suicidal" and "mental". I get that the Police are overstretched but I cannot see that anything is being done. Again, I'm left with an unsupported authority with people trying to maim or kill me.
I guess my fear is that if people are not penalised for their selfish and deadly behaviour, whether it is hitting me on the crossing or hitting a Road Engineer in a closed line, then said behaviour will spread. A "they didn't get told off and it is a quicker so I'll copy" mentality. Slowly the hole level of driving is slowly dropping. Admit it, you've seen it with people on their phones texting or calling with one or no hands on the steering wheel. All it takes is an excited child into the road or a tiny sideways drift on to the kerb and people will die.
I felt really hurt and I will take this opportunity to say a huge thank you and well done to the call handler at the Police and the local Gent from the Residents Association who talked it through with me and helped me calm down and accept what had happened.
In some ways these are not situations I can resolve but they do passionately make me feel that I have viable solutions, where a CCTV operator could even fund itself and the warning letters it would mostly send. Yet, I am trapped watching things slowly get worse which combined with the threat of someone either getting out and killing me or just running me down in their van is more stress than it is worth.
I've spoken this through with my Psychologist and it seems to resonate with my unequal or unjust treatment in my pas discrimination and even with the way I feel toward my now-dead mother. I have to find ways to accept that I cannot make the changes I feel are needed and I have to accept I can do only what I can do - which is fine for minor issues but not for ones where people are going to die.
Still, I guess this isn't my biggest worry. Given I've never held, but I am entitled to, a UK passport perhaps I should be worried 'they' will try to deport me on my Swiss one. Weirder things have happened. As mentioned last week, mental illness is like a marathon and the next stage is realising this isn't something I can change correctly overnight. Just like my tattoo, this could be the end but the story is ongoing.
Somethings I can solve and don't need stressing over as I can solve them later but these issues feel like life or death yet I cannot fix it. Part of me doesn't want to 'accept' that.
How do you accept 'solveable' issues out of your control? How does Brexit affect you and your mental health? Tips or tricks for me? Please share and Comment :)
Feeling much better after what started as a horrible day. Having #mentalhealth abuse shouted at you at work doesn't help you feel good— Matt Streuli (@mattstreuli) June 23, 2016
#mentalhealth #discrimination #disabilities 🎭 #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealthmatters #medicatedandmighty #BPD #depression #blogger #london 🇨🇭🇬🇧 #mind #stigma #timetochange #timetotalk #imnotashamed #sicknotweak #InTheMind #endthestigma #eupd #ExploreMH