May is Mental Health Awareness Month so I want to first talk to families all over the nation to reflect on what great things you have accomplished this year in 2016. If you are a person who is dealing with a mental health disorder such as depression, schizophrenia, anxiety to name a few, know that living day-by-day and making small changes to a happier life can make all the different in having a balanced life.
For family members or caregivers, reflect on keeping a balanced life and try not to be overwhelmed by the day-to-day of mental health and all the issues surrounding it. We know some days are easier than others. But if you try to surround yourself with people that understand your situation, or try to have a moment of quiet or fun, can make all the difference in not getting overwhelmed.
This week we are going to talk about five topics that are near and dear to my consciousness. Depression, Schizophrenia, anxiety, Childhood Trauma/Abuse, and Bullying. Each topic has touched my life in some way. Whether it was as a caregiver or from personal experience at a point in my life, I have a lot to say and share in hopes that someone who reads our blog or listens to one of my podcasts, can not feel alone.
My childhood wasn’t a very happy one, but I continue to believe live experiences teach you something to help others have a more balanced life, and not feel alone in challenges that might be overwhelming at the moment.
This month we want to voice on stepping up about mental health, and let me explain what this means to me. Many families like mine are afraid to talk about mental health. Hands down, I think this is a killer of communication in the home. Either family do not believe someone has a mental illness, or they don’t understand the signs, the struggles of someone in pain. Also, families with a sibling a parent or child with a mental health disorder tries to keep it hidden from friends, co-workers or community. We want to challenge others from speaking up and out about stepping out of the shadows of fear in talking about mental health. That’s why we are starting our campaign called #StepUpAboutMentalHealth, in everyday life.
If someone has a disorder, which is no different than diabetes or heart disease, families are not stigmatized in not telling friends or extended family that they are dealing with a health issue. We need to connect mental health with physical health. There is no shame is saying, I need support. I need understanding. I need a hug. I’m a caregiver, or I’m a person with a mental health issue. #StepUpAboutMentalHealth will be the start of making sure families have support in doing just that.
If you want to share your story in “stepping up” reach out to us and let us know. We have been there and want to assist in supporting your family. Connect to our social networks and share your story and use #StepUpAboutMentalHealth on how you are stopping stigma in your family.
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