1 in 4 of us will experience mental illness at some point in our lives, in many communities, this is a well-known and understood statistic however in some ethnic minority groups, mental illness is simply defined as madness. Therefore, how information is shared must be tailored to these communities, our team have spent months developing online resources tailored for the Mirpuri community living in Peterborough. Mirpuri language is a spoken language, we have created these short videos to raise awareness about key topics including LGBTQIA.
Stigma associated with mental illness can lead to isolation, shame and mistreatment. Often this broad term is applied to people who belong to the LGBTQI community. LGBTQIA includes lesbian, gay, bisexual, transexual, queer, intersex, asexual and aromatic agender individuals. This topic is a particularly difficult topic for communities where there’s a great deal of stigma associated with sexual identify and expression.
The aim of this video is to highlight key elements including the fact that LDBTQIA is not a mental illness and that the emphasis should be on sexual freedom and consent. The impact of stigma and shame associated with an individual’s sexual orientation and identity can impact their mental wellbeing.
As a mental health nurse, I have worked with several young Pakistani people who are aware of their sexual orientation however due to pressures from society and cultural demands, their mental health is compromised, and they find themselves in inpatient hospital settings. Often these young people are suffering from anxiety, depression, low mood and psychosis. The risk of suicide amongst this group of people is high. Raising basic awareness about a taboo topic, I hope will help reduce suffering and help prevent loss of life.
Sexual freedom is a basic human right, expressive freedom and freedom to decide on one’s own consensual adult relationships is a fundamental human right.