The Privilege of it All; What does Self Care look like for those in a lower class?

For my research topic, I am choosing to talk about the lack of realization within the Self Help community when it comes to Self Care for those in lower classes. The reason why I’m choosing this topic is that coming from a lower-income area, I’ve witnessed, and grown up with great people who end up making not the best choices, and I can only think about the difference self-care could have made to help their mental health, which would lead them to make better decisions. 

      I’ve found four articles to help me expand on this topic. The first article I found is called “What Happens When You Can’t Afford Self-Care”, in this article Stephanie Land speaks on her personal experience being of a lower income and trying to practice self-care. Within the article, she speaks about how she doesn’t have the ability to practice self-care because all her time is spent trying to survive. She also speaks on how after working all the time to support her and her family, she is left exhausted with no energy left to practice these luxurious practices of self-care. And even with how much she works, she simply can’t afford to “see a therapist” or “pay for a massage” to treat her scoliosis

      The next article is “Prioritising Your Mental Health Is A Privilege That Many Can’t Afford” by Marianne Eloise. In this article, Eloise speaks on how much better her mental health has gotten due to her now being able to afford to take care of it. She speaks on her journey of mental disorders and how her coming from a low-income house and spending most of her time as a young adult working and in school, left her no time or money to practice self-care.

     This next article I love because the author first starts off describing how “abstract” the world of self-care was to them, growing up in a Latinx family. In “Self-Care Is A Privilege That Shouldn’t Be One”, Ren Aguilara” speaks on the lack of accessibility of self-care practices. And how self-help is presented as this one size fits all thing, but the views typically come from those of privilege and do not take into account the responsibilities and the lack of resources within marginalized communities. 

      The last article “White People, We Need to Talk About ‘Self-Care” by Anna Borges, specifically speaks about how those in Privilege, and in this case specifically white people, might use Self Care, as an excuse to tune out of important social issues. This article was written last year not only during the pandemic but during the BLM protest. Writer Borges, seen a lot of tweets from privileged individuals speaking about how stressful all the news is, and how taking a break from it and practicing self-care is important. While Borges acknowledges that, that may be true, she also acknowledges that even the ability for those in privileged positions to take a “step back” from these issues, is a great indicator of their privilege. And how with taking their mental health into consideration they should not simply ignore the issues and should not only practice self-care but also community care.

Works Cited

Aguilera, Ren. “Self-Care Is A Privilege That Shouldn’t Be One.” Medium, Medium, 9 June 2020, renaguilar-5151.medium.com/self-care-is-a-privilege-that-shouldnt-be-one-460f83fab3a4.

Borges, Anna. “White People, We Need to Talk About ‘Self-Care’.” SELF, 10 June 2020, www.self.com/story/white-people-self-care. 

Eloise, Marianne. “Prioritising Your Mental Health Is A Privilege That Many Can’t Afford.” Self Care Is A Privilege, 21 Oct. 2019, www.refinery29.com/en-gb/privilege-mental-health-therapy. 

Land, Stephanie. “What Happens When You Can’t Afford Self-Care.” Talk Poverty, 13 June 2016, talkpoverty.org/2016/06/13/when-you-cant-afford-self-care/. 

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