Portraits of Boston published a very thoughtful interview with a woman who works with homeless people.
It’s absurd to say that someone chooses homelessness because given the choice for housing that’s affordable and realistic, no one would.
The same is true of saying, ‘Oh well, they choose homelessness because they are mentally ill.’ First, being mentally ill is not a choice. An individual who is mentally ill has trouble navigating everyday normal social situations, particularly if they have Axis I mental health diagnosis or even Axis II mental health diagnosis. These diagnoses make it difficult to navigate everyday life. To say that they’ve chosen homelessness would be simply to say that they’ve chosen it over trying to navigate normal society. That’s just not an answer. So, do I think people choose homelessness? Never.
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