Mental illness in the young is making the news as the Prime Minister is pledging an overhaul in mental health services. This may be very overdue and we can only hope that the government is as good as its word as this hidden and insidious problem that afflicts many thousands of us continues to be the poor relation in health services.
Perhaps though one of the answers may be not only to recognise and re educate but positively embrace our differences. Ignorance and shame only serve to make the problem worse.
With this in mind a young woman by the name of Kat Selwyn Layton from North Carolina has made it her mission to start to fight back against prejudice and the stigma of mental illness.
She has decided to start a campaign on social media to allow people to ‘out’ themselves from invisible or mental illness. This striking move which offers a number of different badges to be placed, if you wish on your social media profiles, allows people to no longer feel alone in their illness. She says that she wants this to be taken as an opportunity to start a discussion on one of the subjects that shamefully is still treated as a taboo.
The badges which have clearly already had an impact on the public have been shared more than 37,000 times and as Kat says ‘anyone with mental illness or neurodivergency need not feel alone or unable to speak about their illness.