Symbolically Letting Go of the Stigma Surrounding Mental Health


NAMI club officers pose with a sign about ending the stigma surrounding mental health.

The National Institute of Mental Health reports that depression and other mental disorders have grown increasingly common in the United States. In an era where teens are surrounded by constant pressure, both academic and social, it’s unsurprising that mental disorders are growing increasingly more prevalent in teenagers.


Despite the growing prevalence of mental disorders, there remains a stigma surrounding mental health. Individuals with mental disorders often hide their struggles, lacking support systems and fearing judgement from their peers. Mental disorders tend to be perceived as uncomfortable and less significant than physical illness. These attiduences can foster stigma towards mental health and individuals suffering from mental health problems.


It is this stigma that the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) club at DHS sought to end on Monday, February 12th – kicking off DubLove week with a powerful start. By encouraging students to commit to abandoning their preconceived notions about mental disorders and those afflicted by them, NAMI hopes to foster a more supportive environment on the Dublin campus. In additional to a poster signed by students, NAMI and Dublin Leadership organized the release of biodegradable balloons – symbolically letting go of the stigma surrounding mental health.


Dublin Leadership tweets about ending the stigma and recognizing the importance of mental health after the event.


As one sophomore expressed after the event, “as someone with severe anxiety, it was hopeful to see so many students committed to changing the hostile environment towards mental health on our campus.”


Throughout this week and all the weeks that follow, it’s important for us to recognize that mental health problems shouldn’t be something we look down on. Though discussions about mental health aren’t easy, it’s important that we are making Dublin High School a supportive campus for those with mental disorders. As a campus and as a community, it is our responsibility to provide support to those who need it, not to make them feel uncomfortable or isolated. Mental health awareness is of paramount importance and this Monday ought to be reminder to all of us of our responsibility to work towards ending the stigma surrounding mental health.