May is Mental Health Awareness Month
May is Mental Health Awareness Month
For Mental Health Awareness Month we encourage you to help us break the stigma associated with mental health by sharing your story and inspiring others.
May is annually celebrated as Mental Health Awareness Month to bring awareness to the importance of mental health and break the stigma. Far too often, people with mental health disabilities keep their struggles to themselves for fear of being treated differently.
But the fact is, mental health issues are common—
About 1 in 4 adults have one, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Especially during this challenging pandemic, it’s even more important to take care of ourselves and not be afraid to ask for help. Mental health is just as important as physical health, and it’s important to remember, we are not alone.
Many people say the social stigma attached to having mental health issues and their discrimination is worse than having the disability itself. Stigma is based on labels - Labels are for jeans and jars, not people. Even mental health providers may stigmatize the people they serve by diagnosing and defining them by their disability. This often prevents people from seeking treatment. As a result, they don’t get the help they need, which can make their difficulties worse and make it harder to recover.
For Mental Health Awareness Month, we encourage you to help us #BreakTheStigma associated with mental health, share your story, and inspire others. #BeKindToYourMind
“There is hope, even when your brain tells you there isn’t.”
― John Green
Mental Health Stigmas Explained (video)
Join us & Get Involved on Social Media.
Tag us in a social media post and use the hashtags #DRCMentalHealth2022 #BeKindToYourMind #BreakTheStigma and #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth:
Help us #BreakTheStigma associated with mental health by sharing your story & inspiring others. You can also share what makes you feel better and ways you are kind to your mind.
- Facebook: @DisabilityRightsCalifornia
- Instagram: @disabilityrightsca
- Twitter: @DisabilityCA
- LinkedIn: disability-rights-california
Remember, you are NOT alone. There are many resources to help you feel connected.
Find the little things that help you feel better. This could be nature, whether it’s a park, your backyard, or breathing in fresh air, it’s a way to #BeKindToYourMind. Just make time for yourself!
Mental Health – “Food” for the Soul
“How come you don’t eat?” When I was a teenager with anorexia, I wondered how people could ask such a stupid question. As if I really had the answer. The easy one was that I didn’t want to get fat. But don’t let that fool you – it was much more complicated than that. Then they would say, “Oh, but you don’t look fat – you need to get some meat on your bones.” As if I was a cow that needed to be fed and plumped up before sending it off to the butcher.
That’s what I felt like when I was in the psych hospital for my eating disorder – it seemed the only thing they cared about was my physical health and keeping me alive. This meant when I refused to eat, they tackled me, wrestled me into a strait jacket, put me in bed and tube-fed me. Nothing about it was helpful for my mental health. Although I do like to say that my claim to fame was getting out of a strait jacket because the Xtra small was too big. I guess you could say I was a mini Houdini-in-training, since I also escaped from the hospital several times, too. But that’s another story...
All they wanted was for me to weigh 100 pounds – that was my ticket out. It may not sound like much, but at 67 pounds, it seemed like I would have to eat a whale. One day, I realized I might never get out if I didn’t follow the “treatment plan.” Although I felt I was betraying my “values” at the time, I finally gave in and decided to start eating.
I was there for a year before I got discharged. I think I would have gotten out sooner if only they had helped me with my mental health. Our mental health is essential for our overall health and wellness. It’s “food” for our soul.
- Stress Management: Mayo Clinic
- 10 Tools for Mental Health: Mental Health America
- Healthy Ways to Handle Life’s Stressors: American Psychological Association
- Taking Care of Yourself: Mental Health America
- Peer-Run Warm Line: 1-855-845-7415. This is a non-emergency resource for anyone in California seeking emotional support.
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255. Provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress.