Diffusion of responsibility: not just black and white

You know when you’re in a room full of people, and someone is trying to get everyone to be quiet so they can announce something, but everybody just keeps talking or finishes their conversation? Thinking “ah well I’ll stop talking in a minute when everyone else stops talking.” Well that, my friends, is called diffusion of responsibility.

You know they want you to be quiet, but you decide to follow everyone else and wait until they are quiet. But, of course, everyone else is also doing that. The result? It takes a good lot longer for everyone to be quiet, or sometimes it results in the person not being able to make the announcement!

I think recovery can sometimes be like this. Many aspects of it, from the “I’ll start recovery tomorrow” (and keep saying that day after day), to other people such as friends and/or family saying “I want to help them, but it’s just too draining and I don’t have the time and patience.. Someone else will do it.”. Essentially, life is full of people avoiding things they ought to be doing.

Avoidance, procrastination and diffusion of responsibility all stem a key problem: people find the rules of society hard to deal with.

What I mean by this is that without social norms of “I must say this” and “I should do that”, there most likely wouldn’t be an issue of procrastination or avoidance, because people would be doing what they wanted to do.

Do you ever feel like everything you do in life are just things that have to be done? They become tasks, no longer a choice. Because, quite simply, we are given an illusion of freedom that is not truly ours.

Our government and world leads us to believe that we are free to act and do as we please, whereas in reality that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Going to school, is it a choice? Yes you choose your school, but you have to go, do the work, spend most your time on your studies.
What about work? Again, you chose your career path, but do you really choose to work? The answer is unfortunately no; without working, we would have no money and would not be able to live. What is money anyway, how does bits of paper and metal rule our lives? Anyway, that’s another point entirely that I shan’t go into today.

Some final thoughts I want to leave you with:
Before just saying ‘take responsibility and don’t expect others to do things for you’, I also want to point out that it is not black and white. There are many grey areas in between. Before instantly jumping on the band wagon and doing something because you are told to do it and you want to please others, first consider what you think about it, whether you want to do it or not.
In a world of little freedom, it is important that for the choices we do have, we choose according you our views, not simply out of the desire to please.

I hope this made sense and you enjoyed this post,
Thanks for reading.

Thoughts on mental health services (UK)

When I first went to the GP after developing anorexia, he said it was just a phase and sent me away. Consequently, in the long run I ended up in hospital for nearly a year.

Because I am under 18 I got help much quicker, but even then it was a push and my parents were practically my lawyers in the way that they demanded my help and never stopped pushing for the support I so desperately needed.
Without their constant push for support/therapy I think it’s unlikely I’d be here today.

So many times people have brushed off my problems simply because I haven’t attempted suicide. No amount of self hate or even self harm matters, and it is shocking.
How could someone turn away another who, in turn, may end up killing themselves due to lack of help?
It is truly awful and it is times like these I despair for those struggling with mental health conditions.

So many people are turned away by the health services. They turn a blind eye, pretend that these mental illnesses aren’t happening.
Some aren’t even actively turning them away; there is just so little understanding around mental health issues that they simply cannot recognise and successfully diagnose and treat them. Well, at least in my opinion/experience that is certainly the case.

The government keeps cutting funding to mental health services in the UK, whereas actually mental health services desperately need more funding, not less!
Why is it that if I broke my leg, there’d be tens of people rushing to help; but if I suffered a serious bout of depression or other mental illness I’d be left alone?
It is wrong on so many levels.

For example, I go to Epsom CAHMS eating disorders services, and funding cuts have meant that they now have to stop accepting referrals/ patients who are at a healthy BMI. What that essentially means is that they will not help you until you are sick enough to not just mentally be ill, but physically be paying the price by being underweight. That means only a small percentage of eating disorders such as anorexia and EDNOS will be treated, and other equally as serious mental disorders such as binge eating disorder or bulimia will be left untreated unless they reach the weight criteria.
As if there isn’t enough pressure to be thin anyway, without needing a service that discriminates against BMI! Essentially you have to get worse to get better if you want extra help. And that thought breaks me.

I am lucky I am receiving help, I just wish everyone could get the same treatment.

This post was inspired by ‘The crisis is not “the cutting”‘; a thought provoking post on Sombrayelalma blog that I completely relate to. I definitely recommend a read.

Articles discussing the mental health crisis:
Sky News
The Independent

Mental health charities such as Mind oppose these cuts. Click here to see campaigns and articles on the Mind website.


Thanks for reading.