Celebrities are Fighting to End the Stigma
In recent years, there has been a push to end the stigma surrounding mental illness and seeking treatment for psychological disorders. Celebrities like Selena Gomez, Kristen Bell, Ryan Reynolds, Lena Dunham, Demi Lovato, Michael Phelps, and many more have spoken up about their battles with mental illness and served as advocates for seeking treatment. By being outspoken and transparent, these celebrities are helping to establish a new norm around mental illness: that suffering is human, mental illness can afflict anyone, and it is a sign of strength, not weakness, to get help.
“If you are struggling today with a mental health condition, you may not be able to see it as clearly right away but please don’t give up — things can get better. You are worthy of more and there are people who can help. Asking for help is a sign of strength.” -Demi Lovato, BeVocal
The Conversation is Changing
Mental illness is no longer a taboo topic riddled with shame and secrecy; public figures are now talking openly about their suffering. The conversation around mental illness is shifting to one that is open, informative, and empathic. Those who are suffering may now feel more empowered to seek help as a new norm emerges: if you are struggling, it is expected that you would seek help for your emotional and psychological suffering, just as you would for your physical suffering.
Treatment is Becoming More Accessible
At the same time that the stigma around mental illness is decreasing, accessibility to treatment is increasing. While seeking therapy from a counselor in an outpatient clinic is the most common approach, online therapy over video chat is now available as well.
How You Can Help
Someone is more likely to seek treatment for mental illness when someone they know and trust has done the same. As helpful as it is that celebrities are advocating for mental health, it is equally important that seeking treatment be normalized at a smaller scale: in our communities, our homes, and our relationships. If you have struggled with mental illness and you have been open about it, you are helping to minimize the stigma around mental illness.
Finding the right therapy should be easy and it helps when you know your options. Keep the conversation moving forward and be an advocate for mental health awareness in your community today.