May has just ended, and is mental health awareness month, which is why I want to celebrate the achievements of some of the many women who have made significant advancements in the field of mental health. Before we can get into that, here are some important mental health resources:
Free online counseling: https://www.betterhelp.com/
Birmingham Crisis Center Teen Hotline (call or text the following number): 205 328 5465
Here are some of the most important ladies that have made some lasting impressions on the field of mental health.
Dorothea Dix (1802-1887)
Dix was an important activist on behalf of the mentally ill in the US. She helped establish the first generation of American mental asylums through a rigorous process of lobbying. Additionally, she helped change people’s perception of the mentally ill as being more human than animal in the US and in Europe.
Eve Johnstone (1943- present)
Johnstone has contributed a hefty amount of research to the clinical study of schizophrenia. She is most famous for her 1973 study that shows the differences in the brains of schizophrenic patients vs the control group. Additionally, she has written a total of 6 books on the topic of schizophrenia.
Melanie Klein (1882-1960)
Klein was a psychoanalyst that contributed knowledge and techniques that influenced child psychology and therapy. She thought that children’s play was their primary way of emotional communication, and attempted to decipher the specific meaning of child’s play.
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (1926-2004)
Kubler-Ross was a pioneer in near death studies. Near death studies is a field of psychology and psychiatry that studies the after effects of near death experiences on individuals. She innovated the 5 stages of grief, which is known as the Kubler-Ross model. Her book On Death and Dying came out in 1969, and was groundbreaking for the time period.
Sula Wolff (1924-2009)
Wolff worked as a child psychiatrist in Britain with children who were mostly socially withdrawn and reclusive. She is the author of 2 different books on the topic of child psychology. Additionally, she was the first person to receive a grant from the Medical Research Council Grant to study child psychiatry. Her work emphasizes the importance of early diagnosis and treatment.
Wolff also understood and pushed the importance of talking to and addressing children in a non stigmatizing way. In the end, her work became used as the basis for a lot of research being done today on Aspergers and autism.