Tammy: Fighting the Stigma of Mental Health- Video 1

by Tammy Ozolins, for Mental Health Awareness Month

Tammy will be doing at least three (maybe four) more videos for mental health awareness month.

Transcript- “Hello my name is Tammy and may is mental health awareness month and I’m here to share my story and I’m also here to help fight the stigma against mental health because we should be very open about it and we need to talk about it especially nowadays we need … Read more...

Racist photos in Northram’s yearbook shines a spotlight on prejudice

I’m not going to debate the picture in Virginia Governor Ralph Northram’s yearbook. But it got me to thinking about prejudice in general which goes way beyond race.

It’s prejudice I’ve been fighting for the last nine years for the topics of both substance use disorder and mental illness.

Every time we say “commit suicide” we are making a prejudiced remark that those who die by suicide are criminals. Here in Virginia, we’ve been unsuccessful in eradicating the ancient 1600s law that suicide is a crime despite that  government agencies and scientific studies having declared it a public health issue.… Read more...

Teens wiping out mental health stigma

stigma fighters
Stigma fighters Alex Chaffee and Amy Lacey of ABC News
See the video on Channel 8

Like me, they’ve had enough.

They see no logic in the tradition of mental health stigma. Such a lousy, pointless tradition.

They are tired of classmates suffering. They are tired of being silent.

Now that the wave has started, I predict that we’ll have a whole new attitude toward stigma by next year this time.

Thanks to Alex Chaffee and other teens I will be highlighting here on this blog. And there are a lot more in this area speaking up and not tolerating … Read more...

Stigma writes me a letter

Photo credit. youmatter.suicidepreventionlifeline.org

Hi Anne Moss,

I hear you are fighting me. So how’s that going? Sort of like taking salt out of the ocean by the teaspoon, isn’t it?

I admire that you have the audacity to take me on. People are so set in their ways, so invested in their fundamental black and white belief system, I won’t fall easily.

Denial is part of my charm, judgment so crucial to my success and shame is where I thrive. I flourish in an environment where people react only to the latest crisis and then forget it two weeks later. This culture is perfect … Read more...

I know what will wipe out mental health stigma

In 2 years, stigma for mental health and addiction will be a thing of the past
In two years, stigma for mental health and addiction will be a thing of the past

More people are speaking out–Suicide survivors, suicide loss survivors, overdose survivors, those who suffer with mental illness.

Parents are motivated to seek help and are risking the fallout of reaching out because the risk of losing their child outweighs their fear of living with shame.

Then there is the awareness, rising suicide rates, media coverage and the opiate epidemic which has cut across all racial and socioeconomic groups including politicians.

All of this works in tandem together to raise awareness and educate millions.

But that’s just part of

Read more...

Young people, you are not alone. Here’s what you have been sending me

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Here is what I am hearing from young people 17-25 about what I am writing and you are sharing from Emotionally Naked.

The fact is these young people have suffered through a system so broken and in a society so unaccepting of their struggles, is heartbreaking. And reading these brings tears to my eyes.

It’s utterly amazing they have done as well as they have. So proud of all of you. One day you will get support and acceptance. Help me work on that by sharing these posts.

I am honored you wrote me and I thought you’d be interested in what others … Read more...