Have you broken up with mental health stigma?

There are a number of things people say that indicate they hold onto mental health prejudices, many of which they are unaware of.

About four years ago, a friend of mine was talking about multiple psych hospitalizations. Then he realized he had not said it was about his daughter and quickly interjected, “I’m not talking about me, of course, it was my daughter who was in and out of the hospital.”

I responded, “And if it was you, we’d be OK with that because it would mean you had taken care of your mental health.” He froze for a second, … Read more...

Proud Heart – #griefheart number 12

The first time we did this, I thought it was #iamnotashamed but it’s #imnotashamed. I’m and not I am.

I am sending this to TeamNotAshamed today so it was only fitting to make it today’s #griefheart. Rachel Griffen, a singer songwriter, had an article recently in the Washington Post. And she started the movement asking those with mental illness to speak up. Thank you Rachel.

If moms and dads, aunts and uncles, cousins and friends speak up about those who died by suicide, we could save more lives.

So we have those with mental illness … Read more...

You may think you are not guilty of stigma

Addiction. Depression. Suicide. Our family suffered the triple stigma, all of them with our son Charles. He didn’t want to admit depression due to stigma and was even more hesitant to accept help.

What characterizes stigma?

I asked friends about how to raise money to get help for Charles addiction and depression since we were tapped out. When I mentioned that a friend wanted to do a FundMe campaign of some kind, all eyes were downcast. Silence. Squirming. Awkwardness. An uncomfortable feeling overall. That is stigma. It’s that very moment when your eyes cast downward and you sort of freeze … Read more...