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  • Larissa Martin

Why We Need A Mental Health Movement For This Generation

In 2010, First Lady Michelle Obama started a movement to create a healthier generation of kids. It is an amazing idea that has really helped kids to develop better lifestyles for themselves and their families. This was a huge success. She moved the mission forward while she was in the White House. Due to Obama’s dedication to her “Let’s Move” movement,,kids lead better lives, and obesity epidemic has decreased. I think positively impacting our future generation is something extremely important, and I would like to thank Mrs. Obama herself.

As great as the “Let’s Move” movement was, I wonder when we will have a mental health movement. If you think about Mental health is just as relevant now as physical health was in 2010. I think if we had a mental health movement in place, not only at home but also in school, kids, parents, and teachers would be better off. The movement could focus on kids getting the help and support they need. This will allow them to talk out their issues, get to the root of the things that are bothering them, and see that they are not the only ones dealing with mental health issues. They will learn that other teens face similar difficulties.

Another focus may be promoting the idea of kids receiving less homework to take home. A large amount of homework leaves both parents and kids frustrated and gives them added, unnecessary pressure and anxiety.

If we had a movement like this in place, maybe we also would not see so many school shootings as we do today. Many people presume that many of those who initiate school shootings have mental health issues. Screening and support methods may be a good way to help us be proactive, rather than reactive, in our approach to diagnosing and treating mental illness.

I think this idea of a mental health movement would break the stigma of mental health, especially for those who deal with mental illness. It would open up the door to a conversation that we need to have about mental health. The more people talk about mental health and mental illness, the less shame and guilt are attached to the subject. If we talk about mental illness, we can spread acceptance both for those who experience mental health issues and those who interact with these individuals on a daily basis.

Everyone can empathize with mental health issues. At some point in time, we have all experienced emotional hardships and taxing thoughts. Reflecting on those times can allow us to be more empathetic to those who face similar struggles on a daily basis.

I feel something like this to help our younger generations cope with today’s world and its stresses. Showing kids and teens how to take care of their mental health is both important and necessary. Just like 2010’s “Let’s Move” movement helped get kids healthy on the outside and taught them proper eating and exercise habits, a mental health movement would help reduce the mental health stigma. It may not be easy, and it may take a few tries, but it only takes one person to make that change and make a mental health movement happen. Once that one person steps up for mental health awareness, a whole generation could be in a better mental state.

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