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Mental Illness in the Black Community

As a child, you have seen rape, murder, endured everyday verbal abuse, molestation, drug use, etc. and now you are an adult and everyone around you just simply… Calls you… Crazy. A term I now do not take lightly too. As a race, we ignore the traumas of life because our ancestors endured so much in their struggle until we think it’s the norm to experience such atrocities. Well it’s not. PTSD is just as prominent in the black community as it is in war. As a matter of fact, in my opinion, it’s worse. Why you may ask. You may also scrutinize me for comparing those in combat for America to some “thugs” (as America has labeled us) in a neighborhood. Those at war agree to this. When a child witness murder or any other traumatic event, they didn’t ask for it. Any of it. But these children are ignored by their peers, parents and society. “They are just crazy. They will be alright”, as the world brushes them to the side and wonder why they are failing in school, why our babies are lashing out, and more importantly, why our babies are so angry and defensive. We must, as a race, start paying attention to mental illness in our community and treat it. If we do not, we will continue to see these children deteriorate with issues that no one will be able to correct later. If you can’t recognize the trauma in your child’s life as any of those aforementioned, you just may be the root of their issues. Pay attention to your child’s surroundings. If it’s stressful to you as an adult. Imagine the effect it has on a child.

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