For anyone who has yet to watch the Oprah interview with Meghan and Harry that aired on March 7, 2021 on CBS, please do. There are so many lessons to be learned and shared. One of the most remarkable pieces of the interview was when Meghan discussed the painful experience of living with suicidal thoughts. All while feeling forced to put on a happy smile and a brave face to live up to her royal duties. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Living with a mental health diagnosis is a different journey for everyone. There are some who are in treatment with a wonderful therapist, some who cannot afford treatment, some who suspect a diagnosis but have not been formally diagnosed, some who are struggling to accept their diagnosis, some who have seen a therapist who was not a good fit for them, some who focus on self-help and self-care, some who are afraid to look for a doctor for themselves, some who have a great doctor, some who have recovered, some who are actively working toward recovery, some with more than one mental health diagnosis, some who need medication, and some who opt not to take medication.

The act of Meghan Markle opening up about her mental health and suicidal thoughts is equal parts powerful and courageous. Stigma is still a very large part of why many people do not seek treatment. Her willingness to share her emotions and thoughts directly addresses the stigma associated with mental health. This interview is so important because it opens the door to conversations about what it feels like to struggle with mental health symptoms, the challenge of accessing resources, and stigma associated with mental health especially for women and people of color.

This interview also highlights the fact that mental health does not discriminate when it comes to race, gender, social status, or economic status. All people can be equally affected by mental health issues throughout their lifespan depending on the circumstances.

If you or someone you know may be struggling with suicidal thoughts, you can call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) any time day or night, or chat online.

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