IT’S OK NOT TO BE OK: Mental Health Awareness month allows us to accept depression and anxiety

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CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – May is Mental Health Awareness month. Several people across the Mountain State suffer from depression and anxiety, but others have trouble accepting it.

“My mind right now is a bit broken.”

Anxiety. Depression. Topics that are sometimes taboo, but are illnesses that many of us suffer from silently.

(Credit: Getty Images)

We don’t have that comfort level and it’s not as easily received, but the truth is that it is an epidemic and it is everywhere.

Deborah Blank-Thompson, LPC of Partners in Psychotherapy in Buckhannon

An epidemic that is looked down upon as physical health often takes priority.

“When you say and when I said, ‘I went to a hospital and checked myself into the psych ward,’ people gave me a weird look and I don’t want that to be anymore. I want it to be like ‘I broke my leg, and I’m going to the hospital to get it fixed.'”

Ginger Zee – Chief Meteorologist, ABC News (Walt Disney Television/Heidi Gutman)

Ginger Zee, the Chief Meteorologist at ABC News, said that mental illness has impacted her for most of her adult life.

And it was the first glimmer of “I don’t want to die,” and that is so so so hard to say because for a long time that’s where my mind always went.

Ginger Zee, ABC News Chief Meteorologist

Zee said that money, time, and energy are not just factors that improve your physical wellbeing, but it could help mental health even more, but perhaps the most important, a support system in your corner.

“So what you can do is stand alongside someone. If you have a friend or family member who needs help, don’t just say, ‘Hey, Here’s that number or here’s the name of a therapist or a doctor.’ If you really want to help them, help them make those calls,” said Blank-Thompson.

Because at the end of the day…

You can’t do it yourself. You need professional help.

Ginger Zee, ABC News Chief Meteorologist

If you need help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

The number is 1-800-273-8255

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