IDONTMIND Talking About Mental Illness

This week, during Mental Health Awareness week, prominent actors from the cast of CW’s Supergirl launched the IDONTMIND campaign to spread awareness of mental illness and provide a platform to those who might otherwise be hesitant to discuss it. There is still a huge mental illness stigma in the United States and many people do not feel comfortable talking about their mental illness for fear of being treated differently or being ostracized.

On college campuses across the country, there is a rise of mental illness, but still a lack of talking about it. "I think a lot of people don’t realize that mental illness is a totally normal thing to experience. It’s a part of life, just like any other physical illness.” -Julia Schroer. Many people still do not equate mental illness to physical illness. But awareness is on the rise. Supergirl’s Chris Wood started the IDONTMIND campaign in order to start a conversation about mental illness in different circles. Many of the cast of Supergirl as well as other DC related shows can be seen sporting these shirts that came out of the campaign and telling their stories of their own mental illness. With these kind of influential people feeling comfortable talking about their mental illnesses, it allows others to do the same.

Many people suffer from some form of mental illness and it is time that we start a real dialogue about it. I suffer from general anxiety disorder and know many fellow students facing mental health problems all around campus. There is no shame in admitting that you suffer from a mental illness and no reason to feel weak for doing so. Each person is dealing with their own issues and we need to start a dialogue about mental illness. “Depression is probably the most common mental health problem that college students face these days,” -Richard Kadison, M.D., at Harvard’s Health Services.

Over 75% of all mental health conditions start before the age of 24, therefore recognizing these issues on college campuses is crucial for recognizing the mental illness rise amongst college students. There are many resources for those wishing to get help as well as encouraging one another to start a dialogue about mental illness and spread the information so we can abolish the mental illness stigma.

At USF, our mental health services number is 415-422-6352. CAPS is open between 8:30 AM-5:00 PM Monday- Friday. They are located in Gillson Hall, Lower Level. Our After Hours line is available after 5:00 PM on weekdays and 24/7 on weekends and holidays by calling (415) 422-6352 and pressing 2 when prompted. This is a free mental health consultation by a counselor.

There is no need to be ashamed of having a mental illness, so together we can speak up and say "I don't mind" talking about my mental illness.