Thanks to all the people who have contacted me after my “Mind your head” podcast (both the ‘mad’, the ‘mental’, the ‘depressed’, as well as the professional, who agree with some of my points, but could never do so openly). I think the issue of mental health is far too circular, too unhealthily, to navel-gazing, corrupted and full of perverse incentives and easy social capital, and like many things these days, fetishised: the more we ‘share’, the more ‘empathy’ we express, the more ‘open’ we are, the more we ’talk’ about our feelings, the worse it becomes (just look at the stats and the ‘science’). I’ve never in my life seen so many people whose grasp of themselves – and reality – is so fractured, so many people who are showing signs of learned helplessness. I’d say, as a non-health professional, one reason for this is that we constantly employ dead words, and dead ideas, which have all the nutritional value as a pot noodle or McNugget (it looks like an idea, it sounds like an idea, but you’ll starve to death of you think it’ll keep your alive). So much of what we do as humans is just role play, all scripted, that instead of getting to grips with issues (which is often the issue of being human, be that a single mother or an HRH), instead we go for faux-empathy, faux-compassion, faux-sharing, like going to confession and doing your hail Marry’s, but knowing full well you’re going to hell. Sometimes it’s worth just going against the flow, to be contrarian and counter-narrative about such important things as this, especially when you see the ‘cure’ just leading to an epidemic of depression all around you, to reject that everyone being on pills to get them through life is perhaps how life is meant to be. That really, we’re all damaged, broken, depressed, suffering from some cognitive handicap or other (diagnosed in a 10-minute visit to the doctor, or self-diagnosed, a name for your pain), that we all have an excuse for the way we are. My unprofessional diagnosis is what pains us most, which is being human.