We are all too aware of the negative stigma attached to mental illness. Often times families from all walks of life limit their access to treatment because of the fears associated with revealing behavioral health conditions. So its no wonder that even celebrities’ ailments go untreated or are kept private from those close to them – let alone the rest of the world. It takes great courage to speak out about mental illness and for the stars this is no different.
You might have noticed that from time to time some stars have found the courage to speak out and have used their celebrity in a positive way to bring attention to often times debilitating diseases. Whether a celebrity has been treated themselves or have seen the effects of a mental illness in a friend of family member, the attention they can bring to a negatively stigmatized social concern is powerful. Most recently we’ve seen Catherine Zeta-Jones come foward about her battle with bipolar disorder after it was leaked to the media. The attention this fostered was breathtaking. It’s easy for us to put stars on a pedestal and view them as perfect beings, when in fact, they are human just the same. Even David Beckham, the english soccer phenom, has been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder. The list goes on and on.
So next time we demonize those suffering with mental illness let’s remember that being mentally well is as equal a struggle as being physically well no matter if we are celebrities of not.
Here is a link to a recent article on the topic:
Manager, Business Development