May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental illness. Each May we raise awareness about the importance of mental health and its impact on the well-being of all Americans, including children, adults, families, and communities across our Nation. The stigma around mental health has long existed, even though times are changing. Still, people hesitate to seek help or even talk about it with their loved ones for fear of being judged and facing unnecessary backlash.
Below are some excellent reads for mental health.
“Generation Sleepless” by Heather Turgeon is an intimate glimpse inside a silent epidemic that is harming teens and how parents can help them reclaim the restorative power of sleep. Caught in a perfect storm of ever-present screens, academic overload, night owl biology and early school start times, Turgeon illustrates how our teens are operating in a constant state of sleep debt and "social jet lag" while struggling to meet the demands of adolescence.
“In love” by Amy Bloom. In this painful and surprising memoir, Bloom sheds light on a part of life we so often shy away from discussing--its ending. Written in Bloom's charismatic, astute voice and with her trademark wit and candor, In Love is an unforgettable portrait of a beautiful marriage, and a boundary-defying love.
Kathryn Ormsbee’s “Growing Pangs” is a relatable graphic novel about friendship, anxiety, and growing up. This somewhat autobiographical account of a girl named Katie growing up and passing through some tough times with friends. What makes this such a good read is the fact that she is silently dealing with OCD.
“Self-care for adult children of emotionally immature parents” by Lindsay C Gibson is an essential guide that helps you heal the invisible wounds caused by immature parents. The advice given is gently delivered and practical. It’s easily used to address overcoming a person's past, it can also be applied to your current situation and as a means to shape the future you would like see.
Mental Health Awareness Month provides a reminder that mental health is essential and that those living with mental health issues are deserving of care, understanding, compassion, and pathways to hope, healing, recovery, and fulfillment. After all, that is what we all want and need now more than ever– for ourselves, for our loved ones, for our communities, and for our world.