With mental illness, experience teaches us the importance of finding–and enjoying–humor even in the maelstrom. Yes, mental health can sometimes be funny too, as long as we don’t take ourselves too seriously and always remain sensitive to the deep hurt and sadness that mental illness also can bring. Life is not easy. Psychiatric disability is a part of life.
Hard though mental illness can be, there is hope. Experience also teaches us that things can get better, even if it means that family members and their loved ones must adjust, with hope, love, and faith, to new circumstances that perhaps once were unimaginable, but in time and with grace become part of a new reality.
So, mindful of the merit of mirth in mental health (haha…), PsychOdyssey begins its “Laugh…” tab.
Life is like a stage. All life is a theatre. And the other way around… In Norwich, Connecticut, there is a clever outfit founded 13 years ago that uses comedy to dramatize the real life of mental illness. It is called Second Step Players. Individuals with psychiatric disabilities ranging from obsessive-compulsive disorder to bipolar disorder to schizophrenia act side by side with other actors to perform comedy sketches about their worlds. By making merry about the otherwise crushing challenges of the maelstrom, Seccond Step Players is helping the public to confront the stigma of mental illness–and to admire the incredibly rich personal dramas lived everyday by those in the maelstrom. Join Second Step Players in a visit to “Dysfunction Junction”:
“I have depression. And now here I am, doing stand-up comedy. In front of a live audience of all of you. Who good paid money to come and watch me. And people say that I’m crazy?…” David Graniruer is a Vancouver stand-up comic. He also has a mental illness. And he’s invented what surely must be a most excellent therapy! Now he teaches others with mental illness in the fine art of stand-up comedy. Here David below. Have a peak at his Stand Up for Mental Illness website. And then check out his stable of comical colleagues here. This is a great thing!