October 24th, 2020

Comment: Mental health issues a slippery slope made worse by a pandemic

By Medicine Hat News Opinion on October 10, 2020.

It is a scary time in Alberta. There’s constant negativity in regards to politics on every level; people are losing their jobs, federal assistance funding is running out for others who needed it as a way of supplementing themselves when COVID hit and house foreclosures and repossessions of other items made the economic situation difficult.

All the stress and uncertainty can be too much as there is not a lot of positive light. These uncontrollable forces outside an individuals’ circumstances will inevitably lead to the breakdown of relationships, both professional and personal, and then to the deterioration of individual levels of mental health.

One such example was put to light when the Medicine Hat News did a two-part series putting the spotlight on homelessness and the stigma involved by featuring a man named Bobby Moore. Moore experienced a number of bad circumstances. Sadly and ultimately it was reported on Oct. 5 in the News that these circumstances had all contributed and led to his taking his own life last month.

The decline of one’s mental health awareness doesn’t happen overnight. There are numerous factors involved. Sometimes it is something straightforward like a chemical imbalance in the brain which may or may not be hereditary and just recognizing it at a later age. Or in Moore’s case, it was a number of outside personal tragedies which led to a deterioration of his mental health and outlook.

In the original 2019 story he explained that his economic situation led him to a dark place: “He was homeless and described his situation as, ‘A hole of poverty, and the stigma of homelessness covers you … It is hard to get out of that hole. You lose hope. Everything you do fails, so you don’t even try anymore,'” the story read.

Yes, despite what you may have heard from City of Medicine Hat politicians at the time, there is, was and will continue to be homelessness, and with the economy the way it is, it could get worse.

If you do manage to stay out the clutches of that mental darkness, you are blessed and fortunate. Some like Mr. Moore aren’t so lucky – take care of yourselves and the ones around you. You never know whose life you may save.

Local man’s life ends in tragedy

Read the original story about Moore here:


Ryan Dahlman is the managing editor for Prairie Post East and Prairie Post West. He can be reached by email at rdahlman@prairiepost.com

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