The Sticky Plaster

 

Authors note:

Tonight a friend may be suiciding and another person sits in an ambulance after attempting to end their life.   I just got mad and wrote this.  Not even sure it makes sense. See what you think.

 

THE STICKY PLASTER

 

i

 

Mental Health Services in NZ are a sticky plaster

In an emergency they are rapidly applied

To stop the bleeding, to stop the wound

To force it all back in

On the outside it now looks normal

While the inside boils and fumes and poisons

 

ii
Then the emergency ends

The Service rips off the plaster

Leaving you with the old pain

And now this new one too

Or the person gets well enough to hide

And yanks the plaster off themselves

The sting drives all the pain to the surface

The person is left alone to cope

 

iii
Why can there not be a system

Where the sticky plaster is bolstered

Where structures are wrapped around it

Where it is never fully removed

Not until everyone feels ready

And even then, it is slow and steady

Not causing further wounds

Or sites for infection to grow

 

iv
We need to stop using sticky plasters

That are yanked off or rot over time

That only fix the emergency

Not touching the everyday battles

Sticky plasters rarely work

Sweat can make them slip off

We are putting sweat in the wrong place

Some people are only surviving by luck

 

v
We should do better than this

Than offer a plaster for a broken heart or life

Than offer to hide the festering and pretend its cured

Than to stop looking, to stop helping, to stop listening

A sticky plaster is no longer enough

A sticky plaster is shameful

 

vi
When will we learn?

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