Mental health issues need more awareness


Amber Boswell, Staff Columnist

Mental health is a serious issue that is not taken seriously enough. Over the years, I have watched many people die because they were suffering from some type of mental disorder.

Millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental disorder. What is society doing to help those who are suffering from these disorders? Not enough.

We should raise more awareness and let the people suffering from mental health issues know they are not alone. People fail to realize that mental health affects practically everyone indirectly or directly through associates, friends and family. This topic is important to discuss because approximately 8 million people die each year due to mental illness.

The amounts of deaths that occur each year due to mental illness could be diminished if people took the time to help those suffering from these disorders.

Mental health disorders show no preference. Many deaths have occured in Hollywood because many celebrities suffered from some type of mental health disorder. Robin Williams died in 2014; he committed suicide in his California home. Williams was suffering from paranoia and dementia during the time of his death.

Fashion icon Kate Spade also committed suicide by hanging because of mental health issues. According to her husband, Andy Spade, she was suffering from depression and anxiety during the time of her death.

Many people around the world idolized these two individuals because of their success and dedication to their work. Some people never realized they were regular human beings battling everyday issues like the rest of us.

The deaths of these two celebrities validated my assumption that money has no control over person’s life. Money cannot buy you peace, happiness or comfort. You can purchase materialistic things, and that might make you happy for a split second, but it is not permanent happiness.

These two individuals needed a stronger support system societally. Williams and Spade had millions of fans that admired them around the world, but many of these people were not aware of their ongoing struggles with mental health problems. These celebrities had to make it seem as though their life was all together for the many fans who admired them, when their life was far from perfect. Maybe if more people realized these two individuals were suffering from mental health disorders, they could have offered more support.

Some people fail to realize it is completely OK not to be OK. Life is not perfect, and it never will be perfect. It is just a matter of staying strong and reaching out to those around you. There is always someone willing to listen because they might be facing the same struggles.

I will be the first to tell you I have many bad days, but my good days outweigh my bad days. I start each day off with a grateful heart because every day is not promised.

In the words of author Susan Gale, “Sometimes you don’t realize your own strength until you come face to face with your greatest weakness.”

Sometimes people do not realize how strong they are until they have to learn how to deal with their greatest struggle.

People suffering from mental health disorders are a lot stronger than they think. They wake up every morning knowing they are struggling with some type of disorder, but they still choose to fight.

You are a fighter. You have overcome many obstacles, but you are still standing. Do not give up now.