My own career choices have led me down the path of helping people to the point I went to college to earn my Masters in Mental Health Counseling – and while I no longer work as a counselor/therapist – it is something I feel very strongly about.

In my own life as someone who grew up in foster care, single-parented, immigrated to a new country and became a special needs parent, I had my fair share of times when I needed support. And I admit that working against the stigma internally and externally brought on some challenges for me. And it’s time that the stigma disappears!

But it isn’t just myself that’s impacted by mental health. I have family members and friends who struggle for a variety of reasons and it’s painful to observe and watch and that is why this topic is so important.

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.

The focus of the National Alliance on Mental Illness is to educate, advocate, listen and lead so that everyone has access to support, information, tools, and resources to get help but also acknowledge how important mental health is for each individual.

Per their website this is what they ask of you, me and everyone else:

Take the stigmafree Pledge

Mental health matters to everyone. Individuals, companies, organizations and others can all take the pledge to learn more about mental illness, to see a person for who they are and take action on mental health issues. Take the pledge and raise awareness.

  • Learn about mental health—educate myself and others
  • See the person not the illness—strive to listen, understand, tell my own story
  • Take action—spread the word, raise awareness, make a difference