"The whole ethos of this site was always recovery" or, mental health is more complex than that
This discussion was (inappropriately) started on a different thread, so I thought it might be interesting to see what people think. Also: I apologize for the lack of lesbians/spoons in the poll, I just feel those might have distracted people from given a srs bsns answer. :P
I personally feel it is very sad that members get told they shouldn't be on this site due to their approach of handling their chronic illness(es). It seems like what was forgotten in that instance is that the RYL main site says
We strongly believe in an open and non-judgemental atmosphere which we feel has helped so many people already
and that the general idea behind this site is to let everyone know
Whatever you feel you are struggling with, remember: You are not alone.
two sentiments that are completely violated when actively discouraging other members from using RYL for support.
And yes, whereas the site *is* called R E C O V E R your life rather than S U P P O R T your life it's still called S U P P O R T boards, not R E C O V E R boards. Additionally, let's not forget this used to be R U I N your life and can we just all agree that whereas there was probably a lot more tolerance for certain types of posts and attitudes its main purpose never was to actually actively encourage people to ruin their lives????? So much for using the site name as an argument for what it supposedly is for.
I am shocked as to how smug anyone can feel about going out of their way to make some else feel bad and unwelcome.
Some things I cannot change
But till I try, I'll never know
I agree that recovery can mean a number of things. I for once think that "Recover Your Life" does not equal being free of illness. Personally, my approach is to read it as reclaiming my life i.e. not let it be ruled by my mental health/revolving around it to an extend where it is my entire life.
I'm a strong advocate of Everyone is Welcome, which includes anyone not wishing to stop self destructive behaviors and even people being "pro" destructive behaviors as long as they manage to stick to the rules. Whereas I do not understand how anyone would glorify or actively try to be/stay self destructive I don't see how this means they are less deserving of support.
Let's also not forget that not believing recovery is possible or desirable is part of many disorders and a symptom of the same.
Some things I cannot change
But till I try, I'll never know
Location: sitting this one out in the safety cupboard
I am currently:
RYL was there every time I tried to stop self-harming (which is just one of many possible interpretations of recovery- you could stop self harming but still have a mental health condition for example) but more importantly RYL was there when all I wanted was to work out how to hurt myself more. Not to help me in that goal of course but to simply be there. I managed to ruin pretty much every friendship I had at that time in my life but RYL never turned me away. People hugged my repetitive self-indulgent RV threads and the friends I made here loved me and traipsed across the country to mop up my emo tears. I needed some time and some patience until I was ready to think about recovery and RYL gave me that.
This is kind of beside the point though, because the original post was really about people who might not think full recovery is possible. The statistics show us that full recovery is not always the outcome. Many people who suffer from a mental illness suffer from it in some way for the rest of their lives. But they can still aim for some improvements, some more stability, better coping strategies. For someone who for example has been in hospital for many years, I can imagine just simply living a ‘normal’ life is a bit of an ambitious immediate goal that would feel too far away to aim for. For them maybe just living in the community and only having occasional short term admissions would represent a really huge achievement and a substantial improvement in quality of life.
The day RYL becomes some exclusive club where you have to subscribe to a certain recovery goal to be welcome is the day I pack my metaphorical bags and go find some other people to inflict my ramblings and anecdotes on.
We’ll find a way to fight it, we always have.
It's not how tragically we suffer but how miraculously we live.
The entire journey each of us on is a recovery journey. No matter where were are on that path.
To say RYL is only for people looking to be fully recovered is like a diabetes board saying only those with perfect sugar levels may post.
I have a biological illness. I'll never recover from that. But I can manage it, and I think that's more important that trying to achieve the unachievable because someone says you have to be recovering/trying to recover to be here.
The aim of this site, is and has always been, to support people through mental health distress. That is, you do not need to have a diagnosis, certain symptoms, certain situations, or certain goals to post and receive support here. It is open to all to post anything, as long as it falls within the rules set and does not glorify or promote destructive behaviours.
I do not want this to become a 'you have to be a certain way to post here' because we are not all sat in perfectly defined boxes requiring the same help to get to the same place. We are wonderfully varied and different humans with different things we are aiming for, and different requirements for what will support us to make positive choices.
To be fair I always classed this as a support site to discus people's issues. If people made it to be recovered so be it but to me it was really a support site to meet other people and to not feel so alone.
I'm fully recovered now but wouldn't say it's all down to this site :)
For me it's kind of.. not either I guess. I think it's a recovery-focused site (eg support, not tipsharing, not encouraging people to use xyz behavior etc), but recovery itself isn't required. I'm kind of working in a harm-reduction model. So I'm better than I was when I joined, but I'm not sure I'll ever be "recovered" by the typical meaning. I think anyone who wants support is welcome.
I guess I'd class this as a recovery focused support site because I've been on sites branded purely 'support sites' that didn't have that level of safeguarding or requirement to not tipshare or encourage. Recovery focused to me means making it a place that doesn't have to focus on the specifics of the behavior to get support for the issue, as well as most people encouraging others to seek support. Not that someone needs to be in recovery.
Last edited by Greyscale : 03-08-2018 at 03:45 AM.
I always thought you could be here even if you didn't want to recover. That was kind of the point. That the site isn't pro self harm, but it's also not anti self harm either. It's more of a, you're welcome here even if you don't feel you are in a place that you want to (or can) recover. Having had that support when I was in far worse situations and places that I was not ready to stop doing what I was doing (self harming, etc.) saved my life quite literally. Without the support of people on here and the first aid boards (and Kim) I'd be dead. Nobody judged me for being ill or for what I was doing. They just offered support and encouraged me to get medical attention and help irl when necessary.
Not everybody is in a place (physically, mentally, etc.) where they want to or are able to change what they are doing, and that's okay. We can still offer support. If that's not okay anymore and we're going to start imposing rules about it then, I am out.
I am not explaining coherently but this was quite upsetting to read in the other thread. Yea, harm reduction model is kind of how I view this site (and was just talking about harm reduction with my therapist lol).
You can't always keep it separate.
This is happening, this is part of you.