I should be reading for class right now, which, in and of itself is pretty fucking cool. I can’t believe how thrilled I am to have syllabi to stay caught up on. And yes, the first week of school blog post will be up shortly, but… right this moment I’m kinda pissed. It’s the good kind of pissed. The kind that will wedge itself in my brain somewhere like a little corn kernel of TNT, and at a more appropriate moment, explode into action.
This is the abstract:
This brief offers a first-time national look at the characteristics, access to services, and parenting approaches for infants living in poverty whose mothers are depressed. Results reveal that eleven percent of infants living in poverty have a mother suffering from severe depression. At the same time, many of these families are connected to services, such as WIC, health care services, food stamps, and TANF, presenting opportunities for policymakers and service providers to help these families. The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation funded this research as part of an Urban Institute project identifying service strategies to help connect depressed mothers with treatment.
You know what pisses me off? The first sentence: A first-time national look. Wow. Really? I have wondered so many times how different our lives would have been if my mom could have been treated. Especially about my brother. In reading the study, all I could see was my little brother. I know my mom thinks about it too. Within the last 5 years she has finally received the treatment she has needed most of her adult life. And it’s because we moved to the Bay Area where Mental Health services are available to poor people. Oh the horrors of socialized healthcare!! She says to me sometimes, “If I felt the way I do now back when you guys were kids, everything would have been different.” Ya, no shit.
So that is what I have to say to the people who need to read a study like this in order to support social healthcare policy. No shit. The Washington Post reported on the study. Again, nothing new to the infant who grew up in the cycle they are detailing. Jezebel blogged about the Washington Post article and the part worth reading is the comments section where mine (as the child), and my mother’s (as in the depressed mom) story is told over and over. I even got the title for this post from one of the commenters. This study is a “no shit study” where people already know this happening, they just needed data to support it.
Untreated depression kills people, destroys families and has long lasting consequences. The fact that mental illness disproportionally affects those in poverty should not be surprising to anybody. The fact that people opposed to socialized healthcare don’t really give a shit should be more disturbing, and it pisses me off.
Ok, back to reading about sex. I really do love my field of study.