Saturday, March 27, 2021

Trigger (Warning)



I'm realizing the meaning of the word "trigger" as I read through articles and tweets about a Yale freshman's suicide, Rachael Shaw-Rosenbaum. (That trigger is related to guns also seems more obvious than ever.) I went to Yale in the late 1970s and spent about half my time there severely depressed. I remember walking around New Haven my junior year wondering how or if to check myself into a hospital. I didn't get medical treatment until years later, when I was in graduate school at UVA. There I was given medication at Student Health and had good therapists in the community. So it pains me to see that Yale brought students to campus, isolated them, and then didn't provide the necessary mental health support. The twitter feeds are angry, and the young woman's friends blame Yale. It's impossible to put full blame anywhere, I know, but a strong mental health center at Yale--here--everywhere would certainly be of some help. I'm happy to read that students there are organizing to push for more support from their administration. Yale University sits on an endowment that could keep a small country running. But it perpetuates a culture of over-achievement at the expense of wisdom, of individualism at the expense of community. In that, it is a mere reflection of our culture of self- and other-destruction.
(off Facebook)

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