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Uprising in Egypt and mental health, in-between lines

Uprising in Egypt and mental health, in-between lines

This is a reflection on the impact of uprising in Egypt on mental health, as observed in private practice, it is also a reflection on article written on the same topic.
On writing an article about The impact of the uprising in Egypt on mental health in a private hospital.http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/pdf/IPv9n4.pdfI learned about the significance of the process as well as the outcome. I find writing far from solitary work. There are many participants those who proposed the original idea, presentations, and other articles e.g.
The uneasy price of a nation’s ‘stability’  that tackled the same issue from different perspectives. Those who encouraged me to write, those whom I recall their attitudes and emotions during the uprising and provided the material that is worth documentation and reviewers as well.

The challenges to write about it included the multitude of events happening on daily basis. One of my colleagues who read the first draft, warned me that there are too many ideas in the first draft. In another draft, I got involved in details of events. A colleague told me, that it might be difficult for others to follow the article. Readers may not be following closely the events. During the uprising days, it was rather an uncommon observation to find a person without a viewpoint; avoiding personal bias on writing was a challenge; using politically correct terminology is another one. Many events can be interpreted in more than a way. It is rather uneasy path to avoid passing any judgment or use any loaded word, as this might accidentally sound insensitive. Being objective and minimizing personal perspective about the events, is easier said than done. Some fellow physicians started to shed light on specific disorders as Hubris syndrome, others explained the events in psycho-dynamic terminology and highlighted possible defense mechanisms. Other people started explaining events in terms of hidden agendas, conspiracy theories, and alternative explanations. I cannot claim such insight, so, I tried to describe only.

After finishing the article and re-reading it; I thought it was more biased to the negative impacts. Though I saw many positive aspects, it was difficult to pin point them are reduce them in terms of mental illness. Some people reported a better sense of well being, self-confidence, self-esteem, self-reliance, and reflective thinking. Other psychosocial aspects included heightened sense of belonging to the country, unity with others, increased levels of co-operation with others. Some reflected that participation in the events was the most glorious thing they ever did in their life. Others stated that they have a lot to tell their children and that they are eager to read history books a hundred years from now, and see how it will be viewed in retrospect. Some colleagues reflected on the rush they feel at hard times during demonstrations. A fellow physician stated that as he volunteered in the make-shift hospital, he acquired depth in his understanding of the Hippocratic Oath, especially, with regards to treating all patients equally. 'Tears of joy is not a metaphor', a friend of mine told me, as she sobbed in tears as soon as she perceived a moment of victory. According to her, it cannot be reduced to happiness or sadness or even a mix of both.

It was impossible to write about everything, and very hard to focus on one thing to its very depth. It was even harder not to write, and impossible to ignore. Perhaps, this is a quest of writing more about it, and may be the wish to reflect on everything is hard to satisfy. The drawback that I can see is being self-absorbed in writing about writing, and reflecting on it. Lastly, I hope I recorded some aspects that I personally found useful while writing. I hope it might be of use to someone else. This is certainly not a manual or a set of recommendations, it is merely a reflection.
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