“I just didn’t see a solution…. but I knew that if I didn’t say it, I’d do it. And I just didn’t want to be alive anymore…”. This was a statement uttered by Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, in a now-viral interview of herself and her husband by Oprah Winfrey. The interview a number of key takeaways, but these three stand out:
- They decided to step down from their royal roles and move across the ocean to address their mental health needs.
- Mental health challenges do not discriminate due to social or economic or royal status.
- More and more people are speaking up about their mental health struggles, even with the risk of being judged.
KNOW THAT #YOUARENOTALONE
The truth is that Meghan could have been anyone of us. She is a mother, a wife, a daughter, and a human being, who has experienced loss and pain, and did what she thought was best to protect herself and her family.
Is there still stigma related to mental health in our society?
Mental health has evolved from being an obscure topic spoken about in hush tones to being one of the most frequently discussed topics. It is much more prevalent on social media, work culture, and even celebrity gossip.
- It is no longer uncommon for people to reveal their struggles with anxiety, depression, and even suicidal thoughts.
- The idea of good or bad mental health is being discarded for the more wholesome view of mental health as a spectrum.
- There are months and days set aside to mark the awareness of different aspects of mental health, such as Suicide Awareness Month.
March 20th is the International day for happiness since 2012, and it is a global campaign aimed at “creating a happier world, with fewer people suffering from mental health problems and more people feeling good…”. It is a day for positivity, a day to remind us that progress should be about increasing human happiness and wellbeing.
On the other hand, on social media, people all over the world share their mental health struggles with the hashtag #marchmadness, a concept that has stepped outside college basketball to envelop the struggles of many people over the world at a particular time.
In a time like this, after witnessing what is essentially a global pandemic, there has been a lot of loss. Many people have lost their homes, a lot of systems change or break down, and political unrest that threatened to pull down the existing world powers, people are more eager to pour out their mental challenges than ever before.
We have a choice between March Mental Health Happiness or March Madness.
In the outpouring of love and encouragement for Meghan Markle after the interview, we saw an acknowledgment of her mental health struggles and realized how mental health challenges DO NOT discriminate based on social or economic status. Reach out for help if you or someone is experiencing psychological distress. Affinity Health Affairs helps clients by providing a clear roadmap from darkness and distress to the light of healing and happiness through holistic therapy and transformational life coaching.
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
- Schedule here for your complimentary consultation with me.