I tried starting a this discussion on my blogsite but have had diddlysquat in response. Then I thought of a variation... "would you marry someone who is mentally ill?"
To me the answer should be the same in both cases... depends on the person. In the work scenario it depends on their ability to do the job. In theory a wheelchair user can be a firefighter because of equal ops and the fire service can do nothing about such an applicant. It should only ever be down to their ability to do the job and in theory if the wheelchair user can find ways to prove that they are capable and the best person capable there is no reason why they shouldn't get the job.
Same with Mental Illness of every kind, not just BP.
As to marriage... again it depends on the person. It's the same question as "Would you marry a Jew or Muslim, Christian?" Or "Would you marry a deaf person, a paraplegic?" Or "Would you marry a black, white or asian person?"
If they were the right one for me then yes, to all the above. What's interesting though is that when people think about it, it highlights what their immediate definition is, their worst fears and their prejudices.
Frankly though we all have those fears in common because we all have our own boundaries and limitations. We all know what makes us comfortable and what unsettles and disturbs us. I know I would struggle coping with an alcoholic or drug user because of some of my experiences. In the same way others would struggle with coping with the mentally ill. Fine, by me. I'm not interested in those who will be of no support.
Even more fascinating is the fears and prejudices that exist in within any group. Bipolar sufferers can be fine with other bipolar sufferers but be scare witless of schizophrenics and not go near them with a 10ft barge pole and vice versa.
If we can not accept each other, can we expect anyone else to?
Since signing up here I've noticed that for a few people here mental illness runs in their families. Should we all then be sterilized so we can't breed and by that sacrifice presumably eradicate mental illness for the good of the rest of the planet? We'd fail if we did for not all mental illness is hereditary. What's more I don't actually believe genetics are ever the soul cause. Environment plays as big a part. The mix is different in each individual.
Frankly I sometimes feel we have more value than those who've never suffered such illnesses. I try not to see things that way, and try my hardest to view all people as equals, but I'm human and some people don't make it easy for me to respect them.
I could go on for hours if anyone wants to book me!
Best give everyone else a chance before I clog up SF's fab forum forever!
It's the one who haven't been assessed I'm scared of!