This week has been a tough one for those of us with mental illnesses with the sudden passing of designer Kate Spade earlier in the week and then today’s morning news of the death of Anthony Bourdain. The sudden deaths of these wildly talented celebrities sheds light and sparks a much needed conversation about mental health and how it needs to be seen as just as important as any other kind of health we monitor on a regular basis.
According to The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide. Almost 75% of people with mental disorders remain untreated in developing countries with almost 1 million people taking their lives each year. In addition, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1 in 13 globally suffers from anxiety. The WHO reports that anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders worldwide with specific phobia, major depressive disorder and social phobia being the most common anxiety disorders.
While these statistics are bandied around anytimea tragedy such as this happens it doesn’t help those that are just trying to survive day to day no matter how “together” they seem because sometimes the strongest people are going through some deep and dark things that they don’t want to bother someone else with because they feel like they’ll be a burden to anyone they talk to. This has been my personal experience anyways, since I too struggle with depression and anxiety. Sometimes it’s a struggle just to get out of bed and work my retail job where I have to have a feign happiness even if I’m feeling completely empty inside.
According to The Huffington Post, 50 percent of Americans with major depression don’t seek treatment. The stigma surrounding mental health is something that is doing more harm than good to Americans and many other countries citizens. However, there are some countries that care far more about their citizens then the current state of America does.
Unfortunately, I and many others are not immune to the sadness that comes when a loved one commits suicide. However, there are many resources available for survivors and those suffering: 1-800-273-8255 is the number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Along with the number one of the best resources is you. If you notice that one of your friends or family members is becoming increasingly withdrawn or distant from you and your loved ones gently take them aside and try to have a conversation with them to see if there’s anything that you can do for them to help them out and to make them feel less alone.
As reported by The World Health Organization (WHO) each year approximately one million people die from suicide, which represents a global mortality rate of 16 people per 100,000 or one death every 40 seconds.
You are loved and needed on this earth and you are not alone. Please reach out or reach out to those in your life that seem to have become more withdrawn and distant or are just the strong friend that doesn’t seem to need anyone, because there’s a good chance that they do and they’re just really good at hiding it.