Mental Health: The Invisible Battle

The empathetic mature adult man gestures and asks questions as he helps the younger man work through his problems.
The empathetic mature adult man gestures and asks questions as he helps the younger man work through his problems.
SDI Productions

Physical Health is something people try to manage everyday, by going out, working out, or eating healthy. While all of it is very important, there is also another classification of health that is beyond physical– health that many don’t pay good attention to until it’s too late. That health is Mental Health.

For a good amount of people mental health does not seem like much. Societal standards have slowly, but severely, begun to lay out an invisible rule that if you talk about your mental health, then that makes you either weird, or even weak. This invisible rule has not only affected young adults, it has also affected students here at Golden Valley, particularly men. This is not to say that women don’t also go through mental health problems, however they’re more open about it, as compared to men who hide their feelings because they feel they need to rely only on themselves by society standards.

In an analysis done by a mental health care facility called the Priory Group, they have done statistics on every male that has been under their care. They have assessed that 40% of men won’t talk to anyone about their mental health, good or bad. Priory Group has also recorded the reasons for the mental health decline. 32% of it is because of work issues, 31% is because of financial problems, and 23% is because of physical health.

With the knowledge that many men and women suffer silently, the main focus should be on how we can fix the ongoing issues for anyone going through a serious mental health decline. Thankfully, there are already solutions to the problem. While therapy is what most think of, students can also talk about some of these issues to their counselors. They will do their best to help their students get the help that they need.

Here is a scoop on the inner workings of Mr. Pellegrin, a school counselor at Golden Valley. “My method is always validating our students, and making sure that they understand that they’re not alone, it’s really about validating their thoughts and their feelings and making sure they understand that they are normal and we’re all trying to figure out who we are and where we go from here,” Pellegrin states.

The piece that connects many to mental health is relatability. Many of us all have similar experiences but have dealt with it differently. People are all going through something whether they choose to accept it or not. They must make the choice to get the help they need, since professionals about that subject are better suited to help them rather than others who are still figuring it all out.

If you know anyone who is struggling mentally or showing signs of mental health decline, try to do something simple like smiling at them or treating them with kindness. It may not seem like a lot but the power of a smile can make someone’s day. To the people struggling with mental health, know that you are never alone. Know that there are people who care about you enough to notice your presence. Seek the help you need.

The GROWL Center offers peer counseling every class period. It is an available resource if any need a space to clear thoughts. Talking to counselors or therapists is also another option. However, if all options have been exhausted, call 988 (aka the Suicide Hotline). Mental Health may be an invisible battle, but together we can make it visible enough to bring us closer to victory.