"Are you a mental health professional?"

Right, so, if you follow the Facebook page you'll know that someone has been spreading false information about me recently. This links in with yesterday's post about online shaming, specifically the latter half where I talked about the witch-hunt involving one of our politicians.

As I was speaking in defence of our politician, a woman decided she'd make a false claim and say that I was an accredited mental health professional. I presume this was in response to me pointing out that attacking people online in the way she and so many others were was likely to have a negative effect on the people being attacked. Rather than pulling her up on it (which in hindsight I maybe should have done) because I didn't see the relevance of my qualifications in that context, I continued with the main discussion regarding online shaming.

If she'd asked, I wouldn't have had an issue, I would have simply said "no, I just have an awful lot of experience and knowledge, and I've even read the odd textbook". Instead she said it as though it was a fact that I was a mental health professional.

Shortly after, another woman jumped on and ran with the assumption that I'm a mental health professional a little further, going so far as to call me a "racist mental health worker". Which just confuses me, because I've made several posts recently about white privilege and such.

Anyway, this post is effectively another disclaimer to say no, I'm not a "professional". I'm an ordinary person who knows her stuff about mental health and is determined to make a difference in this world where people don't think about the impact their behaviour may have on other people.

I don't know how many times I have to make that disclaimer, but apparently I've not said it enough just yet.

I'm going to finish off by saying that you don't have to be a "professional" to be intelligent and well educated on a topic. You don't need a degree to be able to care about people.