National Newswatch
National Opinion Centre

Margaret Trudeau helped lift the stigma faced by the countless Canadians who have experienced mental health challenges on this date in 2006. She did so during an interview with the Globe and Mail in discussing her own struggles with bipolar disorder throughout her adult life.

“It’s not just what life throws at you,” Trudeau told the Globe. “Bipolar is an exaggeration of your emotions, so when you do get knocked down by life—which you will because everyone will be knocked down at some point—it’s very hard to bounce back. Some people can live with sorrow for a while and get on with their lives. I didn’t have that ability. What I learned is that it’s awfully hard to do it on your own. And that’s my message: to reach out and get help.”

Trudeau later described her mental health journey at length in her 2010 memoir, Changing My Mind. When the fast-approaching day arrives and the scourge of stigma is finally lifted in Canadian society, it will be in part due to public figures like Mrs. Trudeau who have courageously gone public with their stories.

Arthur Milnes is an accomplished public historian and award-winning journalist.  He was research assistant on The Rt. Hon. Brian Mulroney’s best-selling Memoirs and also served as a speechwriter to then-Prime Minister Stephen Harper and as a Fellow of the Queen’s Centre for the Study of Democracy under the leadership of Tom Axworthy.  A resident of Kingston, Ontario, Milnes serves as the in-house historian at the 175 year-old Frontenac Club Hotel.
The views, opinions and analyses expressed in the articles on National Newswatch are those of the contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the publishers.
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