May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and I haven’t written a damn thing about it here. Admittedly, I’m at kind of a crossroads with sharing onlineâ€”I’m starting to think about what I want out there for future therapy clients to find…and also future possible romantic interests. (Yes, I’ve only really started thinking about the latter 11 years in. No, I have no idea why I’m single.)
Plus, I’m really just trying to make it day by day through this pandemic. I’m incredibly lucky in so many ways, but that doesn’t mean this isn’t hell on my mental health some days.
With all of that said, while I sort through what I’m comfortable sharing these days, I still wanted to pull together some resources in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month. As always, I think it is so important to talk about mental health, but now more than everâ€”prescriptions of anti-anxiety meds and antidepressants are up dramatically right now as people’s lives fall apart and people deal with the implications of being isolated. I don’t know about you, but when I am in the thick of depression or anxiety, I feel so alone. My goal in writing has always been to make others feel less alone in their struggles.
What follows is a combination of what I’ve written about mental health plus other resources to help you right now.
I would like to say I’m an early adopter to writing about anxietyâ€”I first wrote about panic attacks in 2012, before there was as much openness about mental health on the internet as there is now.
Podcast Ep (remember when I did that?!): How to Deal with Anxiety at Work (with Katherine Schafler, therapist)
How to Overcome Anxiety, Starting Now (Daily Burn)
Whatever You’re Feeling is OK (this is specifically in regards to our current covid situation but is also universal!)
Not All Objects Are As They Appear: my decision to begin antidepressants
Depression Wanted to Steal My Will to Live: my time in inpatient treatment
Becoming a Therapist!
If you somehow have missed this, I’m currently in grad school to take what I’ve experienced and use it to help others and become a therapist! It is really overwhelming to think that I still have another 3.5 years before I’ll be a licensed therapist (my heart started racing typing that), but it feels right, and I am so excited.
Other Mental Health Resources
Crisis (also 911!)
Crisis Text Line: I have both used this when in crisis and volunteered as a crisis counselor.
Suicide Prevention Lifeline: (both chat and phone)
NYC Well: Talk/text/chat line
Warmlines: peer-run listening lines staffed by people in recovery themselvesâ€”my understanding is somewhere between therapy and a hotline
Headspace: Meditation app that is currently free for New Yorkers, Angelenos, healthcare workers and anyone unemployed
I love Gabby Bernstein’s meditations, and she also has a really detailed list here of mental health resourcesâ€”plus her own mental health story.
Talkspace (online therapy…though in this covid time all therapy is online, so)
Advekit: a “therapist matching” service
Open Path Psychotherapy Collective: you pay a one-time membership fee and from then on out, pay between $30-60 a session
Therapy for Black Men: According to the Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health, Black people are 20 percent more likely to experience serious mental health problemsâ€”but may have a more difficult time accessing services, especially finding providers who look like them.
Ayana Therapy: online therapy for marginalized and intersectional communities
One of the things my grad program focuses a lot on is understanding the lives and issues of those in cultures/populations different than ours. As a privileged/cis/white/etc woman, I know I have a TON to learn. And in a private practice setting, I know that a POC likely wouldn’t choose me as their therapist, and I don’t blame them, but when I will be working in the community, my clients won’t have that choice, and I want to show up for them as best I can.
It’s also really important to me to do what I can to improve access to mental health care. I have been beyond lucky and privileged to be able to access the mental health care that I have, and it shouldn’t be that just those with means can access mental health care. I eventually want to set up my own foundation, but for now, I’m donating to the Loveland Foundation Therapy Fund, which provides financial assistance to Black women and girls seeking therapy.
Are there any mental health resources you’d add that have been helpful to you?