A friend of mine passed along a post on Facebook about an initiative on mental health called, "The Crazy Project". Always on the look out for avenues to raise awareness and reduce stigma around mental health, I was instantaneously intrigued.
I responded tor the request for personal stories and was invited to participate in the project. What I like about this project is that it uses photography to capture who is affected by mental health. They are people just like you and me. I'm sure if I talked to each participant, we would find even more commonalities, but I know we are joined by two factors: mental health and humanity. I believe each person has the right and is worthy to get help, and what makes me sad is that many people don't due to stigma attached to mental health issues. This often leaves people feeling alone, 'different', confused and overwhelmed.
I hear all too often how people are afraid to share their story, or even be open about their struggle, out of fear they will be treated differently, misunderstood or rejected. I would be lying if I said this wasn't a risk when speaking out. At the same time, I also hear many people wishing they could hear other people's stories so they would know they weren't alone and could rally together with the hopes of gaining strength in their own journey. People are making these first steps and are speaking up and out about their experiences. They can be found! And thanks to initiatives and projects like "The Crazy Project", these stories can be found! Interested in sharing your story? Check it out or create your own way to do so!