Living with mental illness is challenging, especially if you are living through the tumultuous days of high school. Here are 5 important things to keep in mind as you, your kids, or your friends are getting through this time.

  1. You are not alone. Sometimes it may feel like you are the only one who is struggling. Many people, including possibly yourself, might be hiding the fact they are struggling with mental illness. It is more common than you think and you have nothing to be ashamed of if you have one. It also is important to realize that you never know what someone might be going through.
  2. There are adults who want to help and can relate to what you’re going through. Adults may seem like they are in a whole different realm as you. But it’s more than likely they might have experienced similar feelings. And most importantly, they can help and offer advice.
  3. Start the conversation. Don’t be afraid to speak up if you believe your school might benefit from raising awareness around mental health. The conversation has to start somewhere.
  4. If your mental illness affects your grades, it is not a personal failure. Mental illness is a chemical imbalance in the brain. Living with a mental health issue can affect the way we work, focus, study, practice, etc. By accepting the fact that it might take a little more intention or focus to get things done, you are one step closer to your goals.
  5. Reach out. The most important thing you can do. If you are struggling or if you see someone else struggling, tell someone. Even if you aren’t sure it’s the right person, they can help direct you to someone who can help. Someone will always be there to help in times of need.

Read the article featured in The Mighty. (Main ideas by The Mighty)

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If you or someone you know might be at risk of suicide, please reach out to someone who can help, and in an emergency, call 911, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255, or text the Crisis Text Line 741741.