Letter - Mental health struggle is real

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I am writing in response to the article titled “From the Editor: I have been there — Unmasking mental health can lead to help,” published in your newspaper the week of Sept. 15, 2022.

There has been a noticeable increase in people feeling depressed and anxious because our surroundings have become uncontrollable since the COVID-19 pandemic. Something needs to be done to ensure that people know how important mental health is, especially since 2020, with the unpredictable things that have affected so many people’s lives.

There is a prevalent misconception that mental illnesses are not illnesses and that society should not treat mental health as crucial as physical health. Many think that those with a mental illness choose to have it or decide not to be happy and ‘normal.’ This belief implies that having a mental disorder is a choice rather than an illness.

The misconception is rooted in the people who believe those with mental health conditions that can mask their illness don’t indeed have that illness. We as a society need to realize that it is not shameful to have troubles with our mental health, and you are not alone if you are struggling with it.

In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, being diagnosed with a mental illness is very common, as one in five people has a mental disorder in a given year. With all this being said, one of the things we can do in our community is check in on friends and family. Reaching out can go a long way if you suspect that someone you know is struggling.

Kaylee Cowdrey

Castle Rock

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