Stop Treating Mental Illness As A Secret To Be Kept

Two celebrity suicides in a week…Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. People with seemingly good lives but never a single hint either of them were struggling with mental illness; At least not to the outside world. Why do we keep mental illness some big secret? Why do we brush depression under the rug and act ashamed? Could either of these celebrities have been saved if they had asked for help? In order to ask for help we first need to feel comfortable asking for help and comfort is not found where stigma resides.

We need to stop treating mental illness as though it’s a big secret. We need to be understanding and realize mental illness can happen to anyone at any time. It doesn’t matter if you are a billionaire with seemingly everything or someone living on the streets. Mental illness affects those in all walks of life; mental illness does not discriminate.

I’ve heard it said, “Money doesn’t buy happiness” in regard to these two celebrities who both died from apparent suicide. To this I say does money cure your cancer or your heart disease? See how that sounds? Ridiculous, right? We have to stop looking at depression, bipolar disorder, etc like a disease that can be prevented and start having open dialogue. When we begin to have open conversations, we can begin to understand. When we begin to understand we can be comfortable asking for help. When we feel comfortable asking for help, we can save lives.

We may not be able to save Kate Spade or Anthony Bourdain but we can start being more open, educate the ourselves on mental illness so we can understand. We can have open, truthful dialogue about depression and other mental disorders and maybe we can save some lives in the future.

To Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain, and the other thousands who die from suicide each year, I say may you now find the peace you could not find here ❤️

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