New Humanity Movement

Health: Person, Environment

150Siviglia

What does it mean to live next to a person with mental disorders and the associated behavior? Is it possible to find a way together how to treat and accommodate in the best way the psychological fragility of a person? The community of Seville tells us all about it ...

The story was covered by M.Carmen Uriol from Barcelona

"The sick are the therapy that God uses to treat the healthy". This is what Mother Teresa of Calcutta used to say about her experience of caring for the sick, the poor, the weak and those alone.

Living with the sick, however, it is not so simple; it is easy to speak, but when the pain knocks on the door of your house, everything becomes more complicated. And if the pain is called mental disability, then the whole family has to live a kind of revolution. One hardly mentions it and in some cultures it is almost something to be ashamed of.

We’re in Seville, the heart of southern Spain: there is a mother crying in a church; her son lives just this kind of unhappy experience. In desperation, she feels she must do something, at least to share the pain with those who can understand, with those who live the same situation. From this need, the group "Together We Can" is born. It initially consists of only three people who share joys and sorrows in accompanying family members with mental disabilities. The group grows in number, but also grows in the knowledge of what a bipolar disorder or schizophrenia really are and of what it means to have an empathetic approach to the other’s problems.

There is also a nurse, specialized in the treatment of mental illness, who helps the group to have a broader view of the issues and to address them with greater confidence.

Reyes is the father of D, whose illness makes him sometimes very aggressive and of Carmen, who suffers from anorexia and low self-esteem. When she become pregnant the father of the child did not acknowledge the child.. She resumed her studies and, despite the tremendous effort required, now forms part of an association through which she learns, together with her family, to cope with the disease.

150Siviglia2 orThe group's strength lies in the strong sharing and unity among all. The members know that they can count on each other and that they are not alone; it is thanks to this "network" that they find the strength to go on and find the best solutions to their problems.

Another strong point of the group is their cooperation with other associations in the area dealing with these issues, «it is a participation that enriches us so much because we exchange opinions, problems and the progress we make in our situations. It also makes us pay more attention to those who suffer».

Rocío is the mother of JM, an 18 year old girl with autism spectrum disorder. This is what she said : «Our experience is to join forces and share the capabilities and talents of everyone. In all these years we have worked with the government to ensure that essential services are guaranteed, creating networks in civil society among patients, families, associations and the state».

"Together we can" is therefore more than a name; it is a method capable of generating concrete solutions which were before unthinkable and of giving new hope to many families in the area.

 

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