In the first months of pandemic notions of apocalypse, changes to world powers, and staggering potential mortality figures flew around, capturing a lot of attention.
The mortality figures were and have been staggering (though not on the scale first imagined), but for the most part concerns about extreme potentials gave way to lesser, more likely and immediate problems. Financial hardship and a looming mental health crisis among them.
The image of a national mental health crisis that I formed in my mind, of how it would look and what it would mean, was mostly based on concern for those susceptible to depression and other ailments that, largely, cause harm to the person suffering from them.
On the extreme end, maybe there would be some increase in the number of “lone gunman” type events, where individuals go on rampages and cause disproportionate casualties and deaths. Events like that are as much influenced by ideological leanings as mental health issues, however. The link to mental health isn’t quite direct.
I thought, basically — try to support those who had ongoing mental health problems and a limited support network. On a societal level, advocate for improved access to mental health care and resources in a time when more of us will need them.
Now, I am sure the picture of what a national mental health crisis actually entails is more nuanced, and problematic. The image I formed in my mind was incomplete, and simplistic.