Confronting Mental Illnesses

Updated: Apr 11, 2021

Let's have coffee and talk about something very serious: "Mental Health". Not everyone likes to go to the doctor and get a checkup, especially black men. Mental unsustainability is a hard concept to talk about in most black families.

Men want to show that they are strong and mentally intact, yet who do the men go to when they are struggling with their mental health? Most feel like there is no option, because most feel they have it under control; men are groomed not to show or express emotion. Who have heard or said this to a boy or young man , "Why are you crying, suck it up!" Wrong words to use; this will come back ten folds as they grow and remember those words. Think about how you phrase your words to a young man, they are soaking up the knowledge even when you think they are not.


Fear, in the eyes of most black men is a sign of weakness. The thinking process that comes along with fear is rejection, judgment, and their own complex. Women have to do better at encouraging our black men to show and talk about their emotions. That is not a sign of weakness, moreover it is a sign of strength. I have raised three boys alone and the fourth son with my husband, we have encouraged them to be more forthcoming with their emotions. Encourage, don't belittle them.

Women want to be the best mom and life partner as we travel through our lives. Struggling with a mental illness can change all things within which can lead to feeling emotionally intimidated. We as women, are strong and have so much we have to do in this life. We as women have a heavy burden placed on our shoulders that no one will comprehend. Weather its carrying the weight of our kids, spouses, and or friends and family. Not to say men don't have burdens of their own, yet we as women carry unwanted trammas that are placed upon us.

Admitting that you're depressed, have anxieties, or having the feeling of ending your life is a hard pill to tell someone. Overstanding that you do have an illness or in a state of dis-ease can be a debate for your mind and body. As I battle depression, my momentum is low, and my enthusiasm about all things is obsolete. I do not communicate with anyone on this matter because I don't want outside energy to tell me what I didn't want to hear. I am self-aware with the knowledge of not wanting to admit to it. My identity is being threatened. I am feeling that I am losing myself, and my emotions are struggling. It is not the life I thought would be mine. Being depressed is a continuous to be a battle for me.


I was a single mom of three boys at the time, in a relationship with a habitual cheater, and working at a low paying job on the verge of losing my apartment added a lot of pressure and stress to an already complicated situation.

As I was sitting on the edge of the bed one day, I loaded my 22 with a pearl handle gun and put it to my heart. I chose my heart because it was in pain, agony, and distress. Crying and praying for the moment to help me not pull the trigger came with a small voice walking down the hallway. It was not to be, and I had to be that strong but weak mom to the child that was calling my name.

I dealt with being depressed for years until the moment came and someone asked me, "Are you ok”? It was my mom. She had seen me and allowed me to open up to her and I started to feel over time a sense of relief. A lot of anxiety faded. She became my therapist for many many years until I was able to confront it on my own.

Mental unsustainability creeps upon us at times. Toxic people, toxic environment, and toxic thinking can be some of the causes of mental unhealthiness. Try not to allow the fringes to unhinge you. You’re not alone. We all are in the struggle together with something eating at us, nudging us to take the downward spiral to our darkest moment.

Don't just rely on oneself to try to coup or deal. We all have that one person that has space in our lives that we can go to. I can't tell you how to think; however, I will say, your moments here on earth are precious. Live it to your fullness and not the fullness of others. Control your own life and don't let others live your life for you.

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