- Jan 24, 2017
Just as comic book superheroes, such as Spider-Man, have transformative events to explain how they gained their super powers, every mental health superhero also has an origin story. Aliçia Raimundo, a Toronto-based mental health consultant, shared with HBA students how she coped at a young age with mental health challenges and suicidal thoughts.
Raimundo was a keynote speaker at a Break the Silence event on mental health on January 23, organized by the student group myHBA. By speaking publicly about her own journey, Raimundo said she hopes to help others speak up and seek support.
“In a world of uncertainty, have the power to control whether we live or die,” she said. “By opening up about your own mental health, you are a mental health hero, too.”
Here are some key takeaways from her advice:
- Talk about it – We always want to talk about our wins and successes in life, but we need to start talking about the bad, too. There is no shame in that;
- Challenge the stigma – Do your part to fight the stigma. For example, don’t watch television shows that poorly portray mental illness. Instead, engage in conversations with others to break down negative perceptions about mental illness; and,
- Check-in with people around you – Be in tune with the emotions of those around you. Even if people say they are fine, they could be struggling with their own inner demons. Be honest and tell people how you feel, good or bad.