Millions Missing is a campaign that is dedicated to highlighting how M.E patients are “missing” from their social lives, family lives, schools and careers because of the impact that M.E has on their life. Yesterday (25th May) saw a worldwide protest staged in several cities across the globe. Due to the nature of the condition it was impossible for many sufferers to be in physical attendance at these protests and so there was a very heavy online presence featuring the hashtag #millionsmissing which I urge you to go check out over the various social media platforms – twitter, instagram, facebook. Those taking part in the protest were encouraged to share a photograph of a pair of their shoes, an empty pair, this symbolising that they were “missing” from everyday life. Those who attended the protest in person were able to lay a pair of shoes down at the site, creating a very visually powerful display. In the UK the protest was held outside the Department of health and if you click HERE you can read about the London event as reported by the Evening Standard and you will also see the sea of shoes, a truly amazing visual representation.
The #MillionsMissing campaign hopes to raise awareness not only of the condition but of the lack of government funding towards research, clinical trials and education for both the public and health professionals. Something that truly astounds me is that in America more funding goes towards ‘male baldness’ than it does to M.E. Now I do realise that hair loss can be a terrible time for a man and it is a serious issue for many (not forgetting that women can experience hair loss too!) BUT surely M.E should be on the same level, if not higher that male hair loss!!!!!!! M.E is a debilitating, life long condition. It changes who you are as a person, it takes away your freedom, your indepenence, your life as you know it, it affects your whole family as you just aren’t ‘you’ anymore. Yet there is still not enough research being done, medical professionals aren’t sure what to do with M.E patients as they aren’t even educated properly on the condition. This has to change. As the campaign says, there are millions of us missing from ‘normal’ daily life because this condition is ruling our bodies.
I would love it if everyone who reads this article just take a few minutes out of their day to check out the campaign, either via the hashtag or you can visit the official “millionsmissing website HERE