African Americans and Mental Illness

Between the internet and google there are a lot of social media psychiatrists and psychologists, applying mental disorders to people like sticky notes or bumper stickers. News flash!!! Psychiatrists go to college for years and still understand the importance of the DSM-5, which they must go by. Psychiatrists also use assessment tools, interviews, tests, and observation before diagnosing a person with a disorder. Psychiatrists understand the harm that can come from misdiagnosing and mislabeling people. It’s about matching a client’s syndrome to a disorder. Look internet doctors leave the job of diagnosing people to the professionals, after all they went to college for it.

We really have to be careful how we handle mental illnesses. People feel uncomfortable being honest about their battle with an mental illness. A lot of it has to do with the negative stereotypes associated with mental illnesses. Some people would rather suffer in silence instead of talking about their mental health.

The black community is very bad at not handling mental illness well. Years ago black people would spank children but mental illnesses can’t be beaten out of people. Some also believed in divine intervention, which is great however God also gave us common sense to go see a doctor. I believe that God uses people and guides doctors to help people as well. There are still a lot of people who needs to be educated not to be doctors but so they will know how to treat people. A person can have a disorder and still live a normal every day life without becoming unhinged.

Currently I am pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in Forensic Psychology and I am almost finished! With God’s help I plan on getting a Master’s degree in Marriage, Couple, and Family Counseling. Yaaaaaaay!!! It’s important to support people when it comes to mental illnesses because it’s their health. It’s about living well, with the right support and treatment it is possible.

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When is Enough, Enough?

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said that “there comes a time when silence is betrayal.” When is enough, enough? When is it best to be silent? When is it time to speak up? I started my blog to talk about the things that people think about but choose not to talk about for whatever reason.

Let me start off by saying this it doesn’t matter if you are a Christian, Muslim, Atheist, Agnostic or Whatever a person believes in!!! It’s a person’s right to believe what they choose!!! My point is that Everyone has been tested about when to speak and when to be silent.

God asked Moses to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let His People go. God had given Pharaoh many chances before sending many plagues and even the death of his son. However, Pharaoh was still stubborn. God asked Moses to speak. Guess who was attempting to stop Moses from speaking? It was Moses. Moses was afraid of speaking up. There has been many stories in the Bible where God asked people to speak up.

If God calls on a Christian to speak, they had better do it. Unless that Christian wants to end up in the belly of a whale. So no, God does not expect a Christian to be quiet all the time and to turn the other cheek. God has asked people to act and that included speaking up.

There has been times when I was going to tell people my story but God told me not to say anything and that my time for sharing my story is coming. How do I know that God told me not to say anything? He gave me confirmation. One of my Facebook friends tagged me in a post the following day of me contemplating on sharing my story. The post said “Life is meant to be Lived. Fear is not an option when you know you were sent to Fly. Understand your Power, know that you are Greatness.” This lady is on fire for God and did not know what was on my mind. God had her relay a message.God told her to reach out to me. God told her to speak. So you see God has proven His existence to me time and time again.

Earth is not Heaven so everyone isn’t going to be good but Earth isn’t hell either we still experience the beauty of flowers, butterflies, blue skies and cool breezes. I understand that there are some people here on Earth who has made our lives to be almost unbearable. But God will have our backs and He does have us speak. Yes, we are living in a society regardless of who they choose to follow for guidance, who are treacherous. Understand this jealous people who are our enemies study us more than they did for a test in school. Why? Because they see things that we don’t positive things that may threaten them. So they want to attack our character or try to attempt to have others question things. Some of our enemies pretend to know so much about us and know nothing at all. This can and has happened to anyone.

If we encounter or are in the company of people who try to silence us we have to let them go. I refuse to be need deep in scalding hot water and claim that I am shivering just to make others happy. No, I am not making people comfortable so they don’t have to deal with my pain. People who truly care won’t expect us to suffer in silence. Life is too short to not speak up just to avoid confrontation. Because guess what? At times confrontation is necessary. Escapism is a temptation because it’s an easy fix.

I have had some Christians come after me and judge especially about the kinds of music that I listen to. I have had non-Christians judge me too claiming to be all open-minded and their minds be more narrow than the side of a ruler. Encouraging people to speak but doubt everything they shared with them (behind their backs of course). People just don’t feel safe enough to share their stories especially with people who will claim it isn’t true which makes them seems like nosy people. Nosy people pretend to care in order to gain information. So we all have to be careful about sharing our life journey.

Bottom line confrontation is always going to feel uncomfortable. Sometimes we will have people tell us to be quiet even when the writing is on the wall. If it doesn’t feel right then we have to speak up. Sometimes being silent is Not the answer especially in the face of adversary. Confrontation is necessary.