Video Interview Transcript: Mental Health Awareness Month with Amel
You know, we’re not going to talk about it. We’re not going to, you know, say that we’re sad or whatever you pick yourself up and don’t cry, all of these things and I think that it’s really important to break that cycle. It’s okay to cry, it’s actually like, a sign of strength to show that emotion.
My favorite thing about working at CommUnity is that I really like our coworkers. Everyone that I work with is very open and honest. I really appreciate the conversations that I have with my coworkers regarding diversity, equity and inclusion. I’m really proud of all of the services we provide.
The reason why I am so passionate about mental health is because being from a different culture. It wasn’t really something that was talked about a lot.
I struggled early on with my sense of identity.
Just specifically like Am I an African American? Am I black? What is that and I definitely dealt with a lot of anxiety, and I didn’t really talk about it until I was older. And so, one of my biggest things is always making sure that we’re opening up those conversations in black and brown and marginalized I think that because of how unique our population is and how diverse it is, and I’m going to speak from my personal experience, specifically as a black immigrant, I think that it was really hard for me to talk about mental health struggles because it wasn’t something that was normally talked about in either like the immigrant community or in like the black community. And when I say black I’m talking about African American descendants of slaves.
I think that we have been told to just keep going on or you know, pray about it. Or, you know, just if, if you bury this sadness or whatever it may be then like, it’ll just appear and you can like move on with your life and I think that specifically in the black community, it’s it’s really traumatizing to not be able to speak about what you’re feeling and having to constantly push those feelings down in order to just kind of live your day to day life with folks that look like you. And I think it’s really important to talk to kids about this because that’s where I think we can kind of stop.
Stop the cycle, for lack of a better term. Because, you know, my parents didn’t talk to me about my anxiety and my depression and the things that I was dealing with. And so that made it really hard for me to talk about it out loud. And I think that a lot of people to look like or identify similar to me would probably have the same type of experience and talking about mental health with their families. I think that as black and brown individuals, usually we’re kind of seen as folks who don’t let the stuff get to us. And you know, we’re not going to talk about it. We’re not going to, you know, say that we’re sad or whatever you pick yourself up and don’t cry, all of these things. And I think that it’s really important to break that cycle. It’s okay to cry. It’s okay to cry. It’s actually like, a sign of strength to show that emotion. And so I think that it’s really important to keep having these conversations with black and brown he specific.
Further, also, most of the folks that are probably dealing with these things, I will have a lot of other issues going on in that life.
I think that it’s really important when we talk about health equity, especially as it pertains to race that you don’t just think about that one specific group, guess mental health. I think that it’s far beyond mental health. It comes to socio economic things that have happened. I think that it also there’s also a lot of different factors that play into why culturally it might not be acceptable.
Some people just don’t have the time. Some people don’t have the resources, some people don’t have the money.
And I think that thinking about that is really important. Because not all of us are lucky enough to be able to have insurance to be able to seek that help. And that’s another reason why a robot crisis is because you don’t have to have insurance. You can just call someone and they’ll show up and it doesn’t cost you a thing. And I think that’s really, really powerful.
Especially because, you know, mental health care is something that isn’t really taken as seriously as it should. Am I think that we’re getting better. I think it’s definitely important to get more money allocated towards those kinds of resources. For mental health care and things like that.
I would definitely say that, like it’s super important to have someone that you trust and can talk to who’s really good at advertising.
I think that it’s important to be able to speak those things out loud. And the more that you do it and the more that you’ve talked about it and you’re open about it, it gets easier. And I think that that’s one thing that we kind of are starting to move towards is talking about mental health and like, you know, trauma and our struggles more openly. And so I would just encourage everyone to really find someone that they can confide in someone and have that conversation and you know, I’m like that’s a really good time to call Mobile Crisis.