Should people with mental health disorders boycott Selfridges?
By Liz Lockhart
Be ashamed Selfridges! Be very ashamed! Selfridges is selling a kitchen accessory which is offensive and vulgar. I am seldom stuck for words but when I saw the ‘Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Chopping Board’ for sale in Selfridges stores I could not believe my eyes. It is tasteless and utterly insensitive.
Selfridges obviously consider that cashing in on this very debilitating condition is worth risking their reputation. I have tried to contact Selfridges but no one is available for comment. I have emailed their press office but, as yet, have had no reply. Perhaps someone from Selfridges would like to read one of our blogs about Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and then reconsider their policy. To make it easy for Selfridges they can read this piece simply by clicking here. Any other outlets for this board may do well to read it too.
The Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Chopping Board is etched with ruled lines and a protractor for what is described as ‘perfectly-sized portions’. It is made of wood, which I suggest would not be the first material of choice for people with OCDs and has the words ‘The OCD Chef’ etched on it. It is also covered in scales, grid lines and comes with a printed protractor and marked angles.
In an article about this board in the Daily Mail it says that the makers hope the board will keep sufferers of the condition happy. Happy? It seems more likely that it will prolong their suffering. The manufacturers are Fred and Friends from the United States of America.
According to the Daily Mail the charity OCD-UK has condemned the board, claiming it pokes fun at a serious condition. Chief executive and OCD sufferer, Ashley Fullwood, said ‘The chopping board is cashing in on the debilitating nature of OCD. ‘It probably wasn’t intended to be offensive, but it’s in bad taste to stock this item. If it had been an HIV chopping board or a cancer cutting board, there would be an outcry.’
Mr. Fulwood added that the board would only add weight to the myth that OCD is not a serious condition.
He said: ‘As a therapy technique, its use would be counter-productive. The manufacturer doesn’t realise the impact OCD can have; it can ruin people’s lives, careers and families.’
David Beckham has also confessed to having the disorder, saying he needs to put everything in a straight line.
According to the Daily Mail, his wife Victoria has said: ‘He’s got that obsessive compulsive thing where everything has to match. We’ve got three fridges - food in one, salad in another and drinks in the third. In the drinks one, everything is symmetrical.’
The Selfridges spokesman added: ‘The OCD chopping board is a perfect tool for people such as David who want to ensure nothing distracts from them exploring their culinary skills.’
If anyone doubted the impact this board would have on the stigmatisation of a mental health disorder just read this piece form Totally-Funky.co.uk - “Obsessive chopping and dicing! If you are one of those folks for whom things must be 'just so', then this chopping board is for you. The OCD Chef is a 9x12" cutting board made of strong, hard-wearing beechwood, and it clearly spells out the most precise measurements in exacting detail. So don't worry - it's OK to go a little overboard. And if you want to wash it twenty times after you use it, we won't tell.”
Perhaps we should steer clear of this website as well as Selfridges.
Thank you Fred and Friends for heaping scorn onto a group of people who suffer daily without any help from you.