Mental Health Monday #41: Repressed Sexuality, Comics as Therapy, NYC 1st Lady's Wellness Initiative for Black Women, etc.

 NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray promoting Thrive NYC

NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray promoting Thrive NYC

On last week's Mental Health Monday, Tiffany Haddish opens up about supporting her mother's journey with schizophrenia, WNBA star Imani Boyette is using her platform to broaden the mental health conversation, and The Grapevine hosted a lively conversation around mental struggles in African communities. Check it out here

THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS:

"33 Self-Care Sistahs That Helped Redefine Wellness in 2017" by Siraad Dirshe [ESSENCE]

An undeniable part of this wellness awakening is the countless Black and brown women who use their work and Instagram accounts to help change the historically accepted narrative. From chefs to astrologies and fitness trainers, these ladies reminded us how important it is for us to cherish and protect our magic. 

"Motherhood, Fear, and Truth" by Graeme Seabrook [Medium]

So they will try to tell you to be quiet, mama. No one wants to hear about your mental illness during pregnancy, your traumatic birth. No one wants to hear that you simply don’t want to breastfeed or that you are still breastfeeding your three year old. They do not want you to talk of the mind numbing boredom or the soul crushing fear. They do not want you to tell the truth of the emotional load that has worn this slump into your shoulders or the mental load that has carved those lines around your eyes.

"Black Women and Sexuality: Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don’t" by Monique Judge [The Root] 

It’s not just our own people who do this to us, but it is worst when our own people do this to us, at least in my opinion. By “our own people,” I mean black men. Why are you so threatened by a black woman owning her sexuality? What is it about a black woman who is expressing her sexuality that makes a black man feel that he has to tear her down for it?

"Couldn't Afford Therapy, So I Made This": Powerful Comic Tackles Mental Health In Black Communities" by Robust Health [AFROPUNK]

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The autobiographical comic is 126 pages, and explores mental health and identity within communities of color. Broken up into 5 chapters—Mental Health, Divorce, Nomad, Identity and Reclaiming Space—the stories hone on the specific trauma faced when juggling the sometimes dueling realities of mental health and growing up in Black or brown families.

"NYC’s First Lady Helms New Mental Health Initiative For Black Women" by Victoria Kim [The Fix]

The goal of Sisters Thrive is to train 10,000 black New Yorkers in Mental Health First Aid, and create a ripple effect of mental health awareness and empowerment within the black community.

“We all know what to do if someone is bleeding, if somebody fractures a body part,” said McCray. “But we don’t know what to do if someone has a panic attack or someone is suffering from depression. These are everyday skills that everyone should have.” These skills can be life-saving, but are not normally prioritized.

"Unharm Our Sons: Black Fathers, Masculinity and Mental Health" by Jeff Baker [The Mighty]

“I swallowed all of them!” I blurted out, as I burst into my parents’ room frantically.

Barely looking up from the TV, my father glanced me over, up and down, as if a passerby had cut him off on a busy crosswalk. “Take him to the hospital,” he grumbled. He then continued flipping through the channels, as my mother darted up to find her keys, purse and shoes, scurrying all around the house in a state of panic. Her visceral, instinctive reaction seemed much more rational, considering the urgency in my voice.

If you have a mental health resource, event, or piece of content we should know about, step into our office. You da bess.