As May comes to an end, we are also in our last days of Mental Health Awareness Month. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHS) has defined mental health as something including “our emotional, psychological, and social well-being.”
Mental health has gained more discussion and awareness over the years. It used to be a taboo subject that many people avoided, but it has become more normalized in society. This is partially due to celebrities and influencers being open and vulnerable about various things including mental illnesses and mental health.
The rise in social media use overall has contributed to the discussion of mental health being pushed more and taken seriously. Social media is also a place where people feel comfortable sharing what they’re feeling, whether it’s good or bad.
NBA player Ja Morant recently posted a series of Instagram stories that led viewers to believe he would do something to hurt or harm himself on Wednesday. Tennessee Police did a welfare check on the Grizzlies player following his concerning “goodbye” posts that were later deleted from his story. According to ESPN, officials told ESPN that Morant is simply “taking a break from social media.”
Morant’s “goodbye” posts came after he made headlines again for flashing a gun in a video that he posted online. A video that would ultimately land him in trouble with the powers that be in the NBA. Some people took to social media to say that Morant’s actions were fake and just a cry for attention. Regardless of anyone’s personal feelings toward Morant, his mental health should be monitored and taken seriously. Better to take precautions to prevent something tragic from happening than to wait until it’s too late to change the circumstance.
Mental health isn’t something that should be taken lightly. We don’t know what people are going through behind closed doors. It’s important to take care of your mental health just like your physical health. Doing things like getting enough sleep, being active and taking part in things that bring you joy are ways to improve and maintain your mental health. Take care of yourself and encourage others to do the same.
By Cierra Lemott, Senior, Columbia College Chicago
Instagram: @cece.kodak / @kodakscamera
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