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Mental illness does not discriminate

August 28, 2017

(Click the picture to see Chester Bennington last interview)

 

It doesn't matter if you are rich or poor, young or old, what color your skin is, what race you are, what religion you practice. None of that matters. Mental illness can happen to anyone; it does not discriminate.

 

I'm sure many of you have heard the devastating news about Chester Bennington, the lead singer of Linkin Park. When I first heard the news I was in complete shock; I could not believe it. Linkin Park was my very first concert experience when I was twelve! They were such a crucial part of my early teen years. Now more than ever, their music has been helping me through my hardest days.

 

It’s unfortunate that a man who helped so many people, felt that he could no longer go on and ultimately took his own life. It is a perfect example of a person who seems to "have it all," but struggles deep down. We don't know what battles other people are facing; we have absolutely no idea! My heart goes out to Chester and everyone he left behind. As someone who has experienced suicidal thoughts, I can only imagine what he was going through in those final moments of his life. Mental illness is real.

 

Mental illness does not discriminate. Just because someone lives an "easy life" or has all the money in the world doesn't make them immune to mental illness. There seems to be this stigma that if something horrible did not happen in a person’s life, they don’t have the right to be depressed; their feelings don't matter. As if, depression is a choice. You don’t just wake up one day and it’s magically gone. I’ve experienced judgment like this from my own family and others who are not educated on the subject. It takes constant effort and a lot of support from loved ones to overcome this.


 1 in 5 people experience a mental illness which means if you yourself are not fighting this battle, you know someone who is. Educating yourself is the best thing you can do.  Know the signs of depression and reach out to someone who is experiencing a difficult time. You could end up saving a life. The more society speaks about mental health the closer we are to ending the stigma. Share your story! Get involved! Make a difference! 

 

Chester is one of many celebrities who have openly shared the struggles of depression and anxiety with the world. When I watch his interviews, I get the chills. Every word he used to describe his depression are things that I have experienced and still struggle with, it definitely hits home for me. His interviews are very raw and vulnerable. It truly shows that you are not alone in this battle.

 

Remember, you are not alone. It will get better. Keep fighting. 

 

love, Jess

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