Clarke Carlisle, Ralf Little and the remaining stigma and invisible suffering of mental health troubles

In light of Clarke Carlisle’s attempted suicide by stepping out in front of a truck Ralf Little has seen himself become embroiled in a trending discussion on depression and mental health. Clarke Carlisle, it needs to be said, does not deserve to feel the way he felt and to feel that suicide is a potential choice he could make – no one deserves that. Life should never lead someone to feel that. But Ralf Little has actually opened up a really interesting avenue for discussion about mental health, and part of it is not pretty! To put it into words: the welfare of those who live with, are related to and/or support people suffering with bad mental health.

Depression, for example, is a selfish disease of the mind – that’s why things like CBT can help so much: they afford the recipient perspective to see that actually things might not be of a structure that they believe, which can give them an ‘out’ from their disease and cycle of suffering.

There’s not that similar ‘out’ for those tasked with (either out of their choice or not) helping them though: not only do they witness the other person’s pain but they often receive the hostility that comes with mental health sufferers lashing out – which can be truly awful. What’s more, as good, compassionate humans it’s hard to say “I can’t help you”, which leaves a lot of people there absorbing another’s pain like a sponge and being unable to walk away. Years of that person’s life could simply disappear, and that’s a tragedy.

But there’s another even more risqué side to this discussion: if you’ve cared about someone and they’ve wronged you there comes a point where you can’t cope anymore – you’ve done everything there is to do and if you continued to stay in their life you’d be doing nothing but going around in circles, which is as bad for them as it is for you. The aforementioned selfishness of mental health aflictions can be as destructive to those around you as it can be to yourself. There are some depression sufferers who need to recognise when there is something that they do need to take responsibility for. One can simulatenously be being harmed and also harm, and that’s a tough tough truth.

It seems Ralf since has alluded to this more transparently: Ralf Little’s feud with Clarke Carlisle sparked by footballer using pal’s bank card for two-day BENDER