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A Metaphor for the Sane

Posted on December 28, 2005 in Bipolar Disorder Life as Metaphor Therapy

square268This might or might not work. Imagine that you have been invited to a conference workshop. When you get in the room, you find that the chairs are about two-thirds the size of normal chairs. Yes, the ushers tell you. You are to sit in these.

God, how they hurt your back and your butt.

Other people enter the room. They, too, are told that they must sit in these chairs. You see several reactions: a few refuse to sit. Many take their seats and squirm. One or two people manage to sit still even though their backbones are killing them. One or two throws a tantrum.

Welcome to my world, the world of the tall. We spend our lives sitting on furniture that is too small for us. If the world truly respected individuality, it would custom-design each sitting place. It would make provision for us like it makes provision for those in wheelchairs and the blind.

Starting a Tall Revolution* is not the point of this exercise. The mentally ill often find themselves sitting in chairs which are too small for them. The chairs are their disease. It’s uncomfortable, so we squirm, try to stand, throw tantrums, or pretend that we are well even though the depression or the mania is killing us.

Give us better chairs.

* I am 6’4. Could there be someone out there who wants to say that I am a poser tall person?

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