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Mental Health Journey: Signs, Getting Help, and Overcoming Stigma

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hi Zane uh um so good to talk to you about your life journey and you just shared with me that as a child when you were growing up you saw signs um that uh you know anger related and depression related and you got help what was some of the signs and you know how did you get help how did your family help you out I will say at the very beginning you know it's I think it's really difficult to see that in yourself when you're a child like you're not going to think you're any different you might feel different but you're not going to think this might be like a sign of depression this might be a mental condition I didn't know anything about that but what I what I can say is looking back on those moments I was just incredibly sensitive and I don't think that you should shame people for being sensitive but I was overly sensitive where I got really angry over the smallest things or I got really depressed for long periods of time that I think you would see a lot of kids getting over more quickly and not to say that that I think it's okay for people to take time if they're depressed but you know as a kid it was something that you know my parents saw that why am I sad all the time why do I have trouble making friends why do I have social anxiety yes a lot of different things that you know my my parents were thinking about and how they helped me was you know some of them someone in my family they had a you know a direct experience with mental health and so they knew about the process of finding professional health care because it is a long jungle you have to go through if you really are not aware of the Mental Health Resources it's one thing to find them but then to navigate them as a whole process and so luckily they kind of already knew which is pretty advantageous for me um because they were able to get me help relatively fast and they already knew people in this in the mental health space and they started helping me with getting professional help mental health care I would say towards the end of elementary school and I saw psychologists until the end of high school so that's almost seven to eight years I was seeing a psychologist which is why for me I don't really see the mental health stigma well I mean I see it I know it exists but for me I have zero problem with someone going to get mental health care because it's just been embedded in me since I was young it's just a natural thing for me to think that you know if you're having a mental health symptom or condition that you if you hopefully you have the means to go and get help and I don't see anything wrong with that or taking medication for your mental health I don't see any problem with that yeah so was there anything at school that you were very comfortable with right like you were open about your mental health situation with your peers and your friends I would say no actually mostly because I didn't really know what it was I didn't know I felt different but I didn't know that it was mental health I didn't really know what it was and think that's why I think sometimes when you want to educate children you want to be really mindful of how they're going to learn things because even if I was told about mental health I probably didn't really grasp it depending on how it was uh shared um but I wasn't I wasn't really open kid to be honest so I don't remember if I was or not to be honest but yeah and it wasn't just that like I didn't just have the professional help in outside of school I also had help in school so I was on a 504 plan for being neurodiverse because I had horrible attention issues I had a hard time concentrating in class and homework was a huge challenge for me like it was very difficult for me to complete assignments because I was always so distracted and so I had a 504 plan which is you know like an individualized education plan for students K-12 that needed additional support so with the mental health and the attention issues I was able to get help with getting less homework uh private not like a private tutor but tutoring that helped me throughout the day and I waited 10 sessions so like every I think it was every week or every other week I would see a like an on-site counselor and we would just talk about my emotions give me methods on how to deal with them how to write about them we would also play games and stuff and I always looked forward to them because it was a time where I could openly talk about my emotions to someone that you know was very open and welcoming and really friendly about it yeah that is amazing that the schools are providing these resources but even like for the schools what was the trigger that they decided that you know you needed help it was just that you could not concentrate in the class or you were getting bad grades or somebody complained or your parents like what was it I I really don't remember what the cause was but I know for sure that my mom was a huge advocate for me so when she saw that I was falling behind in school or she saw that I was having trouble completing my assignments and she would constantly help me with work she knew that she needed to intervene and she worked for the school system she actually worked for the elementary school I attended so it's very very helpful not everyone has that position so my I was very fortunate that my mom knew the people she knew the education system she knew who to talk to not every parent has that level of understanding or that position so that's why for me it's like sometimes the school won't notice they will just see that your kid is falling behind and they may even talk to the parent and say your kid needs to be doing better and instead well maybe they actually just need additional support maybe they need a specific education plan and sometimes teachers are not looking at it that way they may be looking at this kid's a slacker this kid needs to become more concentrated it's like it's not super simple and if a kid is concentrated and if a kid is not concentrated in class there may be something there that you should be exploring and not kind of shaming them especially since this is a pivotal time in their development as a kid they shouldn't be shamed for for that and they should be maybe getting additional help so teachers need to be mindful as well but also parents have to understand that sometimes teachers won't be advocating for their kids or their students and parents need to just intervene and talk to them and that it sounds easy it's very difficult especially when you get backlash or you get bad feedback from administrators or saying that no they don't need this plan they're a smart student which I've heard I even talked to I've talked to parents about um what you should do and how to you know apply for a 504 plan and the school should know and schools have these resources but sometimes they're just not readily accessible for parents or students and they make it again backlash and I've heard that stereotype that well your kid's a smart kid they don't need that well that's that's a I don't think that's a great thing to say because those kids like me it's not that I wasn't intelligent I just needed the additional help yeah and so I would never frame it as you're too smart for something like this it has nothing to do with being smart or intelligent it's the way your brain is wired and you might need a different kind of instruction on how to learn yeah there's nothing wrong with that yeah yeah that is really really amazing what you talked about and then you have also started a magazine right yes and is that one of the ways to address uh help others as well as address what you've gone through uh let's talk a little bit about your magazine absolutely and I didn't share that you know after I stopped seeing a psychologist towards the end of high school I went to University I felt relatively better I felt like I had the tools to manage my emotions better but you know what sometimes you never anticipate what life is going to hit you with and if you're truly mentally prepared for that and that's why even now after years of graduating from University I am seeking a psychiatrist because I'm working and I have a job that you know has a good plan where I can get a psychiatrist um and so I'm looking into doing that so I always have the ongoing mental health support whenever I need it um and it's always good to start early because already I did literally just a consultation is taking like a month and a half yeah so a month and a half to get that appointment so I got the appointment but it's like a month and a half later so it's some of these psychiatrists are very busy and now that mental health is becoming more talked about and more people hopefully are getting help now like I think psychiatrists and psychologists are even more busy um because there is a decline in people pursuing mental health care as an industry so a lot of people are not pursuing it as well as doctors and nurses for obvious reasons like covid um so there needs to be there's more work there I won't speak on that because I don't know but I just know that you know it's hard so like start as early as you can especially since I also think it's good to start when there's no crisis like if you're starting to see that you're getting a little sad or you feel a little anxious think about seeing someone or think about finding that support because sometimes what people do is they'll wait and then they'll have a crisis or they're suicidal and they're at almost their breaking point and then again you might have to wait a month and a half to see psychiatrists and you really don't time isn't something you have at that moment but unfortunately there may not be someone to help you which is why you should be really like proactive in your mental health as well as your physical health yeah anyways so there was a time in University where I was suicidal I was engaging in self-harm really tough time with a lot of different things happening I ended up leaving the semester I didn't drop out of course but I told I just left the semester I withdrew and I determined to re-evaluate my life and I got more engaged in the Mental Health Community I um I found that yeah I found people that were very well aware of the space I volunteered for organizations I told myself that what I needed was important and there's nothing wrong with asking for help and even though I went through a whole fraction of my life a big fraction of Mental Health Care there still is the fear of reaching out for help and as I mentioned before I don't see the mental stigma and even though I may not even see it like I have no problem with getting mental health treatment but then there's still something there that still kind of impacts your your Consciousness that oh there is something wrong with it and it's completely wrong but it's the culture we kind of live in that you still feel it no matter what it's always to be in the back of your head there is some shame associated with it but anyways so after all that that's where I became a real Advocate I wasn't an advocate before I just was someone that had the lived experience and I was trying to manage it afterward after being suicidal after going through all that I told myself you know there's a whole Community here that I want to tap into and I want to help others too I don't want people to go through what I've gone through and people have gone through a lot worse yeah and so I don't want people to experience that people will but if there's any way that I can create more of a sustained culture where people can talk about mental health or that there is less shame to be looking for help or to just tell someone about when you're feeling suicidal I feel like it's very hard thing to tell someone that but um and that's also on the other person's end that nothing's wrong with saying the word like if someone does feel like they're really depressed there's nothing wrong with asking are you thinking about suicide it's not going to give them the idea because people know about suicide it's not like it's a it's not like a tab it's not like a topic people don't know about and you mentioned it's not going to put it in someone's head especially with the way you frame it if you're framing it as are you thinking this um then yeah uh that would that would not plant the idea I think another misconception that people have and that's why people are afraid to mention it because they're worried about that but the studies show that won't happen so definitely consider bringing it up to someone that you're really concerned about and just show up for people so that's so then there's that I know a long answer yeah but just kind of set me up to be more of an advocate yeah so when covet happened I wanted I wish there was more conversations about mental health because like I feel like mental health was a huge topic that a lot of people were talking about even in like I was in a lot of mental spaces but even outside of those spaces people were talking about mental health because it was drastically impacting a lot of people yeah I I wanted to see more of a mainstream angle from like the mainstream media talking about mental health I think they're doing a better job I don't say a good job I say a better job than they were before and I decided I was actually taking copy editing which was a class at my University and our final project was to start a publication it was just this class project but I decided to make it a real thing about positive mental health storytelling and that's what I did I started it with my friend Michelle and we wanted to see just a platform for positive mental health and there are platforms out there but one we wanted to see and we wanted to spearhead yeah so yeah I I really applaud you for you know taking charge of your own mental health and helping others right and like you said right the stigma even though you acknowledged it but it still exists yeah yeah thank you Zayn for your time today yeah well thank you so much

More Information

Zane shares his personal story about his mental health journey and how he overcame depression, social anxiety, and attention issues. He talks about the signs that he and his family noticed, how they got help, and the resources that were available to him. Zane encourages others to seek professional help and not to feel ashamed about getting mental health care. Zane's story is an inspiration to all of us, reminding us that we are capable of achieving anything we set our minds to. It shows us that the path to success may not be easy, but with patience, resilience, and a positive attitude, we can achieve our dreams. #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealthjourney #mentalhealthcare #mentalhealthstigma #depressionawareness #anxietyawareness #educationaboutmentalhealth #therapyworks #mentalhealthmatters #endthestigma

What an Expert Says

In this video <https://youtu.be/lVkeplCYbZI>, Dr. Seema Segal, a practicing psychiatrist with over 25 years of experience, discusses the emotional responses of children who grow up in a household where a family member has a mental illness. Depending on the age of the child, the responses can vary from fear, confusion, worry, guilt, and shame. Dr. Segal explains how disruptions in the family system can affect the child's development and the challenges they may face in adulthood. She also addresses how partners and spouses who are supporting someone with mental illness can take care of themselves and recognize when they need help. #mentalhealth #mentalillnesssupport #family #children #emotions #support #selfcare #partners #mentalhealthmatters #breakingthestigma #familyconversations #empoweringconversations


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