I have a confession, folks: I disagree with you.
I usually don’t get too personal here. This is new for me in this blog. I try to keep my messages palatable for every kind of person. Raising awareness about mental health, and in particular as it pertains to the most vulnerable people, is a message for everyone. I don’t want to alienate anybody who might need to read my blog.
But tonight I was scrolling through my Facebook feed, and I’m am filled with urgency and grief that pulls me to risk controversy. I may not be who you think I am. I may not be be as much like you as you’ve tried to believe. So I want to tell you some of the things I’m careful not to say, lest I offend you or turn you off this blog.
I have some pretty radical beliefs. apparently. Because as I read your words on social media, they couldn’t be farther from the truth as I experience it.
I believe that every single person deserves compassion
I believe that everyone needs to feel respected- as a human being
I believe that hate is wrong
I believe that hating someone for their political beliefs is hate, and is therefore wrong
I believe that all true religions teach love, and love is right
I believe that loving people who don’t believe what you believe is right
I believe that love is right and hate is wrong
I believe that vulnerable people- children, the poor, the mentally ill, and the marginalized- need our love and compassion and respect most of all
I believe that religions teach us this, if we are willing to listen
I believe that pointing fingers and issuing blame is a form of hate, and hate is wrong
I believe that listening and caring, even when what you hear is scary or unsettling or not what you want to hear, is love, and love is right
I believe that being a physician is a calling and an act of love for others and that is why I do it
I believe that we hurt each other too much when love and compassion would be the better route
I believe that we have succumbed to hate as a country
I believe our children and the most vulnerable among us have been poisoned by this hate
I believe we can heal families and we can heal this country together, with love
I believe that our mental health and our children’s mental health are affected by our healing or lack thereof as communities
I believe it our our responsibility and our obligation and our duty to each other and our children and the vulnerable to find our way back to love
I believe this is urgent now
I believe we should love the marginalized, and we should also love the neighbor who is gay or transgender or whose politics we find abhorrent
I believe these things, and I hope you can embrace them for the good of all of us
I’m exhausted of your hate for each other
I hope you’ll choose love instead
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