June 22, 2012

I'm a fruitcake!

Refreshing essay by an MP on revealing one's mental illness:


I'm a fruitcake!


**Thank you, Charlotte. LOVE it.

4 comments:

  1. I guess if is refreshing in that a prominent figure is revealing his mental illness, but come on -- the guy purports to be fighting against mental health stigma and in the same breath calls himself a "fruitcake". Sounds like he should first work on his self-stigma. What a missed opportunity.

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  2. I can see your view, yet I saw it as refreshingly light-hearted and a thumb in the eye to the stigma to turn it around that way. There is a long, proud tradition of humor as a tool to defuse slurs this way.

    I don't read this as someone cringing and feeling negative about himself. He's owning it without defensiveness or expectation. It's not everyone's cup of tea, of course.

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  3. Ahh, two nations divided by a common language....

    It is a very British sense of humor and a mark of the self-deprecation which makes up the whole British psyche to call oneself a fruitcake. It is a defense mechanism that we seem to share as a nation. If you admit to being stupid as the opening line, it rather takes the fire out of any "heckler" who may disagree with you. It is also a rather affectionate term, rather than an insult - a bit like calling someone a daft moo, rather than a stupid cow.

    It was a seminal moment in this country and the speech he gave in a full Parliament was the only one to get full support from ALL parties. This hasn't happened much over the last 350 years.....

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  4. You may find that this follow up article is more elucidating

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/9349272/MP-Charles-Walker-obsessive-compulsive-disorder-OCD-is-like-a-hundred-little-blackmails-a-day.html

    It finishes with this line - so typical of British humor

    “Dear Charles, better to be a fruitcake than a boring old sponge.”

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