Shakespeare said life is a great drama where we come on stage when born, and exit at death. So if society assigns me the role of Mad Man, what do I do? I have to act mad to survive and keep acting according to the script, all the time wondering who is the author of the script. Is it God or Satan? If it's Satan, no wonder. If it's God then he is being unfair; gives you the part of acting as a mad man in this world, while giving the juicy titles like psychiatrist when they were part of our betrayal, confirming us in our chosen parts to act in this world...that is being really mighty!

In the numerous talks I have given to Rotary clubs as guest speaker, I have mentioned that stigma and discrimination against mental health service users is more disabling than the illness itself. It is no use the mental health professionals working so hard and governments spending a lot of money fostering the recovery of the mental patients when the mainstream society is not ready to accept them back as whole human beings on recovery.

Do not blame me, I am just acting my chose and confirmed part.

Watch Joseph's story, getting help for Bipolar Disorder in his home country in BBC Our World: Uganda - My Mad World 

Learn more about Joseph Atukunda, Mental Health Service User, Activist and Champion here, and his mental health peer support group, Heartsounds Uganda.




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