Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Use Your Voice! #BraveChat #FaceOfMentalIllness

This is a guest blog by super-advocate Jennifer Marshall of ThisIsMyBrave.org. Thanks, Jenn, for all you do and for letting me share this important social media campaign!
Jennifer Marshall, the #FaceOfMentalIllness
Every Halloween mental illness seems to be exploited and mocked for entertainment value and profit. Companies using horrible images of mental patients or mental hospitals, and even creating "costumes" depicting the outward wounds of dealing with mental illness. 
Thankfully, due to the work of countless dedicate mental health advocates, society is beginning to wake up. Over the past few weeks, offensive costumes have been removed from websites and shelves, Halloween attractions have been shut down, and people are being educated about the realities of what it is like to live with mental illness through stories shared.
And we're still able to celebrate and enjoy Halloween. 
But when the public has this image in their head of what mental illness looks like, we need to speak up.
Tonight during our weekly #BraveChat on Twitter, we're launching a campaign to change the perception of mental illness through photos. And we need your help!
Join us by sharing a photo of yourself with the hashtag #FaceOfMentalIllness. Or, if you don't do Twitter, you can still add your voice to the campaign by taking a selfie holding a sign that says:
This is the #FaceOfMentalIllness
and share it on Facebook or Instagram. Share a little about your story and why you feel it's important that we speak up. Be sure to tag us (@ThisIsMyBrave) so that we can re-share to amplify our voices. 
“You know this would never happen for other health conditions. You wouldn’t have a Halloween attraction about a cancer ward. It is mocking something that is a very serious illness.”— Mary Giliberti, Executive Director of NAMI to Washington Post
Use your voice and join us!