Bell Lets Talk
Written by: Daniel Maheu
"The thing about a broken clock is that you can tell exactly when it stopped ticking. With people, it isn't so easy, and sometimes you can't even tell they're broken."
If everyone has mental health, then why is it so damned hard to talk about? The stigma that surrounds this topic is deeply rooted in ignorance, and initiatives like #BellLetsTalk do an excellent job of breaking down those walls. Through my experiences, I believe the key to solving this issue is education. While it requires a multifaceted approach, we have to start somewhere, and that is what today is all about. Making it known that having a mental illness is not a weakness and that asking for help is not shameful are core ideas that need to be brought from the margins to the forefront of society.
If it were not for my friends and family, who have taken immense time out of their lives to ensure my well-being, I can honestly say that I do not know where I would be today. All it takes is an open and listening ear to change someone's life. To everyone that has ever gone out of their way to make sure I was okay, I thank you with all my heart. I owe my life to the compassionate people that I am so grateful to have surrounding me in my daily life.
However, today is not about me, it is about spreading awareness, and making it known that regardless of what you are going through, it is not the end. As cliche as it sounds, your story does not end with your mental health. You matter. You are loved. You are not your illness. Despite how far we still have to go, this is an amazing first step, and I look forward to seeing it grow, tearing down the walls of stigma in its path.
Do not hesitate to ever go out of your way to ask a friend how they are doing. Something as simple as a text can go such a long way.
You are not alone in your battles, you matter, don't ever forget that.