By Minister Sonya Hosey

“Mental health needs more sunlight, candor, and
unashamed conversation.”
– Glenn Close

I am unashamed to say
that I dealt with three
deaths, all within a year
and a half – my sister
and two nieces. At one
point, I thought after one
death, I could breathe
again; two more took
my breath away.

I recently went to a
salon, and the Nail Tech
and I began chit-chatting. Curious, I asked how Asian
culture addresses mental health challenges. The
Tech implied that their culture was strong, grateful,
and experienced no problems.

Before we judge, the African American community is
the same, deflecting our emotional challenges.
What happens in our house stays in our house. In the
church, we are praying and slaying it away.

Community advocates are becoming creative in
conversing about mental health in beauty and
barber shops, incorporating bible studies. Most
conversations lead to, “If you say mental health, it will
turn people away.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
defines Mental Health as including our emotional,
psychological, and social well-being. Mental health
helps determine how we handle stress, relate to
others, and make healthy choices.

So now what? How do we continue to bring light to
the conversation in our homes, churches, and
communities? What is the best language –
“emotional health” or “emotional well-being.”

Regardless of the term, we must have an
unashamed and honest conversation.

Can we TALK 4 real to HEAL 4 real?

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