YOU GOT THIS is a performing arts mental health outreach program designed expressly for our creative community, including music and art students, to promote optimal mental health self care and to help calm suicidal thoughts, feelings and plans.YOU GOT THIS is directed by a New Orleans Musicians Clinic and Assistance Foundation (NOMC&AF) community task force in collaboration with local and national mental health and performing arts medicine advocates to increase access to trusted self-care resources that are confidential, supportive and clinically effective. Our intention is to work with universities, art schools and conservatories to create healthy cultures to support mental health while reducing the prevalence of suicide among our valued creative artists.
Please give our new resource a try and find out how you can feel your best!
YOU GOT THIS IS Speaking out about the mental health crisis within the creative community.
Countless studies reveal that those endowed with the creative gift are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety. With 60 percent of suicides directly linked to severe depression, the problem is clear. Suicide is preventable with early intervention when traumatic life events occur or when long-standing depression is not adequately treated. People around the depressed person need to intervene when ANY indication is given that the person has given up, has made plans to distribute his personal effects or made efforts to acquire the means to kill himself. A suicide happens in the USA every 15 seconds.
Our YGT task force know that those struggling with depression may withdraw from friends and family and make it difficult to reach out to them. Efforts must be made to bring help to those suffering from depression. Concern, support and referral to mental health professionals could mean the difference between life and death.
Kathryn Rose Wood, Singer/Songwriter
YOU GOT THIS Guest Editor Copes With Grief and Depression
On March 26, 2015, my 19-year-old brother, Preston, died by suicide. His death seemed to come out of nowhere, for my family and myself. The storm of emotions in trying to process Preston’s death were wide-ranging and profound: shock, anger and sadness weaved in and out with confusion, guilt, helplessness and so many other emotions I hadn’t experienced in this intense way before. Though I initially “held it together well,” continuing with my natural productivity, active in my work, creative, and social communities, it was mere months before the pain, confusion, sadness, anger and trauma sweltering subconsciously took over my very being.
While most know that it’s not easy to navigate mental health issues, much less speak about them, caring for someone with mental illness is equally challenging. I am an excellent example of that – I spent several years working as a clinical music therapist in mental health settings and constantly reiterated the importance of advocating for one’s mental health needs. I knew the importance of self-care, therapy, emotional intelligence and awareness…and yet, when I started experiencing my own feelings of post-traumatic stress disorder and suicidal depression, I failed to voice my massive need for help. I continued shouldering the intense pain and darkness, allowing it to take all the life out of me, for far too long. I was self-sabotaging, losing some of the most important relationships and opportunities I’d ever had.
The few times I chose to confide about my mental state, the responses varied from excessively sympathetic to unrealistically positive. While I certainly don’t fault anyone for being unsure how to handle a loved one’s admission of mental illness, an understanding response can make an incredible difference in how the struggling individual chooses to approach their illness and treatment. I was fortunate to encounter others who were in the same state I was, and found encouragement in this empathy, but just because someone hasn’t experienced mental illness before doesn’t mean they cannot be educated in comforting words.
FACT: 43.8 million adults experience mental illness
1 in 5 adults in America experience mental illness.
Nearly 1 in 25 (10 million) adults in America live with a serious mental illness.
One-half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14, three quarters by the age of 24.
Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and is a major contributor to the global burden of disease.
Serious mental illness costs America $193.2 billion in lost earning every year.
90% of those who die by suicide have an underlying mental illness. Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US.
TREATMENT IN AMERICA:
Nearly 60% of adults with a mental illness did not receive mental health services in the previous year.
Nearly 50% of youth aged 8-15 didn’t receive mental health services in the previous year.
African American & Hispanic Americans used mental health services at about 1/2 the rate of whites in the past year and Asian Americans at about 1/3 the rate.