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  • Black History Month

    In the midst of Black History Month, we at Supportive Engagement would like to take a moment to acknowledge and celebrate the advances that we have collectively made as a nation towards inclusion, true understanding, equality, and Black excellence. While there are many accomplishments made by Black Americans to recognize here and so much Black History to proudly celebrate all year round, we would like to shed light on Black mental health and address the need to continue beating the stigma surrounding Black mental health.

    According to the Mental Health Coalition, “Today, in the U.S., more than 7 million Black and African American individuals are living with a mental health condition (such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia).” The Mental Health Coalition also stresses that “exposure to trauma is the highest among Black Americans compared to all other racial groups.” “Some examples of traumatic experiences faced by the Black community are racism, discrimination, poverty, police brutality, and violence.” – @mentalhealthcoalition. 

    To beat the stigma surrounding Black mental health is to have the courage to speak up about our mental health, without shame or fear of judgment. Speaking to trusted individuals about our emotions and our emotional needs is how we normalize reaching out for help, seeking support, and receiving the mental health care that we all deserve. We invite you to hold space for someone in your life who may need your support and to listen to them with empathy. We also invite you to share more openly with those you care about regarding your mental health; your story may be someone else’s survival guide without necessarily knowing it. If you or someone you care about is struggling and in need of support or mental health care, know that it’s okay to not be okay and that it’s always okay to ask for support.

    As a black licensed mental health counselor, I strongly believe that diversity of the human experience can be a collective strength that allows us to adapt, evolve, and thrive together. We at Supportive Engagement invite you to reflect on and celebrate Black History and Black excellence this month and year-round. We also invite you to consider the importance of beating the stigma surrounding Black mental heath by keeping this conversation going with honesty, vulnerability, and curiosity.

    Written by: Karla Moyse, LMHC, CCATP,TF-CBT Certified Therapist