The news is sadly full of murders of children by relatives. Sweet, innocent children being murdered by the very people who are meant to care for them.
And mental illness, of course, is the ‘go to’ excuse for it all. Even though, there is no evidence of mental illness in the media coverage. So people are simply ‘assuming’ it is mental illness. And then telling people who are shocked and angry – they are wrong. They assume their assumptions, are the facts. When they are not.
Does anyone stop and wonder that even if there is some form of mental illness, that these heinous acts may still have been committed consciously? That the mental illness, did not in fact render the person incapable of knowing what they are doing?
Nope, it is assumed any mental illness can make you a child murderer and that becomes an excuse for anything. It’s the excuse for murder, child abuse, sexual abuse, rape, domestic violence… etc.
And it is not compassion, to automatically make assumptions as to an excuse for the abhorrent act. That is self serving, to make life seem less ugly than it can be.
All of my abusers, probably had some form of mental illness…. paedophilia, narcissism, sociopathy, psychopathy etc disorders. But, did that render them incapable of knowing that the abuse was wrong. No. They all knew it was wrong, because they hid it, lied about it, and threatened me into silence. They consciously and deliberately and intentionally harmed me. They made choices and they made decisions to cause suffering. Their mental health, did not render them incapable of resisting being abusive.
So, using mental illness for all acts of suffering caused to another human being, regardless of the type caused, is not wise, or correct. We cannot assume the horrific act – whether it be murder, child sexual abuse, rape etc – was not consciously committed.
But, people love to assume……. and assumptions are rarely correct. And are never wisdom.
Assumptions are often made, to make the abhorrent act committed, seem less terrible. If an excuse can be made, it helps people deal with the situation. But, excuses are not reality. They are lies.
Mental illness, may be the easy excuse/rationalisation to assume, to apply to human beings committing acts so abhorrent, but they are not reality.
I don’t use self soothing excuses/rationalisations etc to make life easier, because I have more integrity to the truth and being realistic.
It is a normal reaction, to find abhorrent acts of suffering horrendous. And to feel shocked and angry.
When we fail to be shocked by abhorrent acts of suffering, we become less than human.
I’ve been on the receiving end of abhorrent acts of ongoing suffering, caused by people who intentionally and consciously made decisions to cause profound harm. And yet, I am still shocked by abhorrent human behaviour. Because I have empathy. I live in reality. I don’t avoid the truth to make life seem better. And I am a human being with the capacity to understand suffering and how horrific it is. I haven’t become desensitised to the suffering of others.
It takes more courage, and deeper thinking capacity, to face reality. And reality is not a place many want to reside.