Growing up in a black household, there are so many things that I could remember having to deal with, push through, and overcome.
There are so many things that many adults, teenagers, and children do that is toxic on a mental/emotional level that society very so often never talks about. One of those things just so happens to be mental health. If you grew up in a Christian household just like I have, you’ve heard the old sayings of how mental health is a “white” thing or how you can ‘pray it away’as if God didn’t make emotions. Then, there’s the ole’ reliable: “Mental Health is of the devil” or “it doesn’t exist”. Due to black people excessively denying importance of mental health, in a sense, the black community consistently goes down the spiral of carrying generational pains and a lack of empathy.
What people fail to realize is that black boys and girls aren’t dying off solely because of police brutality and racism. It is the true fact that we do not raise them to be expressive. We raise black boys to be emotionless and raise black girls to be the mules and housewives of society. We do these things and we don’t even realize it. If you rip a person’s ability to express themselves, the person creates a false perception of themselves to where they no longer feel comfortable. They will not feel valued because they’re lying to themselves to be something that they are not. In other words, you are robbing them of their personality, creativity, intellectualism, and their being. The battles we fight are not external but internal.
Mental disorders and disabilities exist and have existed for a while. There are people who cannot figure things out as easily as other people. There are individuals that do things with a lot more difficulty than the average person does. To deny that people struggle with things that others have great ease of doing is extremely disrespectful. Also, some people are born with disabilities and mental disorders that they absolutely have no control over. To rid them of their humility and humanity is flat-out disgusting and should never be tolerated from anyone.
I remember when I was younger and some things felt difficult to understand or comprehend. Every time I did something, I’d take baby steps because I felt overwhelmed and distracted quite easily. Years later, I discovered that it was ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Due to ADHD and childhood trauma, I had the hardest time growing properly. I didn’t completely grow as an individual until I started attending college and growing out of my shell. While ADHD caused issues in my life, it also taught me about the power of emotions and expressing oneself properly.
That mental disabilities, disorders, etc. are real in every form and fashion. They are not demonic forms, not made sold separately for certain ethnicities, and they are VERY MUCH real.