We’ve been at this for 9 full months now: sharing #SameHere🤙Stories of everyday people, practitioners, advocates, influencers, celebrities, etc., to show the similarities in the CHALLENGES we all face. I went back & took inventory of all the challenges that have been shared through these stories. This is the “short” list. All the heroes who’ve shared these stories, have shared how these challenges affected their MH.
Read this list! Even glance over it if you are short on time. Can any one of you say you haven’t experienced any one or some of these? Likewise, would anyone on this planet say that they’ve not dealt w at least one? It’s the human condition & we ALL face challenges.
Over time the list of examples is only going to grow. This is not to say life doesn’t have amazing celebrations & beautiful times. This is to say we ALL will deal w challenges that affect our MH at times in our lives & the perspective we gain will make us stronger/better people. It’s time we acknowledged this & made it more comfortable for EVERYONE to open up. The list below & on the slides is separated by semicolons & capital letters. I hope if anything, it brings you comfort that you’re never alone, & inspires you to invite more to the #SameHere Movement:
The shock of moving to an unfamiliar new city as an individual; Having parent(s) w MH complication; Losing a friend in a sudden accident; Loss of a parent at a young age; Undiagnosed OCD & doing ritualistic things as a kid at a young age – along w strong genetic makeups for any type or MH disorder: Depression, Anxiety, Panic Attacks, Schizophrenia, Bipolar, etc.; Toxic breakup w boyfriend/girlfriend/fiancé; Homelessness; Victim of bullying at a young age; Anorexia & bulimia/body dysmorphia; Treatment by doctors, hospitals, friends when you have cancer or other physical ailment – & them neglecting how your MH is affected; Alcoholic parent(s); Date rape; Being sexually abused as a minor; Mental, physical, & verbal abuse at the hands of parents or other guardians/adults/even teachers & coaches; Traumatic brain injury from military service or athletic competition; Migrating to a new country alone or w your fam;
Being the parent of a child dealing w challenging MH complications; First responder PTSD from witnessing great tragedy/putting your own life on the line frequently; Watching as your friends figure out family life/career path, & you feel left behind w no direction; Being over-medicated at a young age, sending you spiraling; Divorce of your parents; Being a foster child & moving from house to house; Accident or tragedy at a young age – car accident or fire – leaving emotional & physical scarring; Parent taking out their own neglect they felt as a child on you; Little to no access to healthcare, clean water, education; Living through a natural disaster & loss of friends/loved ones; Sudden & unexpected job loss; Watching one parent abuse another – physical/mental; Growing up in a rough neighborhood where violence, drugs, poverty, incarcerations, death were the norm; Holding in something horrific you witnessed for fear of the repercussions to your loved one or yourself if you revealed; Caught in a hamster wheel of negative emotional thinking & not being educated on the damage this is doing; Using your work as a drug to self-medicate & bury any lingering issues; Holding for yrs onto a story or trait abt yourself (eg sexual orientation) for fear of how others may react; Constantly being told by a parent or caregiver when you are young, that you’re not good enough or meeting their expectations;
Growing up in an environment at home or school where it’s frowned down upon to speak up & talk abt what’s going on in ur life; Caring for a child w special needs; Suicide of a friend/fam; Going through a divorce after a long marriage w kids/assets involved; Losing a pregnancy & the dream of having a child; Having an abusive boss at work; Weight/body image issues & being picked on by friends and family abt it; Rehabbing from a major physical accident or injury; Being abused by a healthcare professional; Loss of a parent or grandparent who was the center of your world; Being left by your partner in the middle of a pregnancy; Going to many practitioners & being told – you’re fine, the problems are just “in your head;” Being prescribed painkillers for physical health conditions & getting hooked on these addictive drugs; Exposure to toxic mold &/or heavy metals; Having absentee parents; Being abused in your own home by a friend/fam member – a place you always thought was safe; Watching one parent physically abuse another;
Managing a visual disabilities or hearing impairment; The disappointment of not accomplishing a dream you’d thrown your life into & been chasing for some time (job, award, spot on a team, etc.); Watching a horrific event like a shooting or a fatal car crash happen in front of you; Watching a family member suffer – from a debilitating sickness, victim of a mugging, etc.; Feelings of worthlessness, loss of purpose & isolation after leaving the military/leaving a long-tenured job; Realization after making work your life that having nice “things” doesn’t bring you happiness & you need to find purpose; Having to move to multiple houses as a kid bc of fam instability.
WE ALL FACE CHALLENGES #SameHere