by: Eric M. Kussin

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08 July 2018

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We Need To Speak More Broadly To EVERYONE About Mental Health

If you haven’t heard the horrific news yet, I’m sorry to have to be the messenger. Tyler Honeycutt, a standout basketball player at @uclambb who played a few years in the NBA, and then went on to go play overseas (Israel & Russia), died via suicide a day ago.

 

He had a gun on him, his mom was telling authorities he was acting “erratically,” and ultimately after cops came and shots were fired trying to get him to leave from the area of the house he had barricaded himself in, he shot himself.

 
His former coach described him as a fantastic kid, who was great to be around. The coach identified “problems” he had been dealing with, related to the arc of his b-ball career. Living in and adjusting to markets where he was unfamiliar with the people and the culture.

 
What athletes face, is such a microcosm of what the rest of society faces. Can anyone out there relate to taking a job in a new market, with good compensation, the promise of a fresh start, only to have a tough time adjusting? This is SO common and it’s ironic this news came about just as I was about to write about how we are failing people all over the world, by marketing MH only to those at the disorder level (and specifically those who have been diagnosed).

 
We continuously hear the stat: 1 in 5 ppl/yr have MH disorder. Those same sources tell us that 59% of ppl w disorder don’t get treatment. Why then do mass marketing messages and programs only target ppl w diagnosed disorder/illness? This isn’t a THEM problem. It’s an ALL of us one.

 
I don’t know if Tyler had ever been diagnosed…if he had ever sought out help. But, in one area of life alone – career transition, think about how many undiagnosed ppl out there, have dealt with/are dealing with a difficult transition. These situations affect us. They affect our thoughts. It’s time we woke up and made sure our messages speak to EVERYONE. #weareallalittlecrazy.

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