Crazy concept, right? That mental health struggles do not only impact one race or culture?
Unfortunately, minorities are still being left out of the mental health conversation.
But, that's what I'm here for!
Here's the thing...as minorities we also have the responsibility to buy in. We can't convince the world that our mental health impacts in a lot of the same ways as other races if we don't allow ourselves to be honest and somewhat vulnerable. And when I say "the same" I think of crime and law enforcement particularly. When non minorities are in legal trouble it is nothing for them to say that it was result of a mental health disorder. When a minority is in legal trouble that idea is typically fleeting. A White person is likely to receive resources and psychiatric hospitalization while a Black person is more likely to be incarcerated.
But let's talk about us. For so long we denied wholeheartedly that Black people did not struggle with depression, schizophrenia, or any other disorders. We put a spiritual label on it, kept our mouths shut, and kept it pushing, It is time out for that though...no more suffering in silence.
Here's why though:
Like I mentioned above, if we are not convinced and committed to really breaking it down to understand it for ourselves why would anyone else be?
We can't be helped if we don't admit that there is a problem. Yes, it takes a lot of vulnerability to admit that you're not okay and that's not how we have been raised but we have to get out of that mindset. We were brought up that way because we had to be back in the time when we were slaves. We are in a different time now and it is okay to shift our thinking.
There is a healing that happens in vulnerability which is why I try to practice that here. In a world that does not believe in the trauma of being a minority it is up to us to take control of the narrative and the only way to start that process is being honest with ourselves about our own struggles. July is Minority Mental Health Month and to some that does not matter and it is not necessary but I am here to tell you that it is absolutely imperative! We are fighting for our lives here! We deserve the same energy that everyone else gets when it comes to resources, advocacy, awareness, and simple respect of the things that impact us on a daly basis. And it is not only this way in the Black community. No minorities have been openly welcomed into America which developed a need to keep secrecy in communities.