Youth and Mental Health 101
Said no teen ever (0:44)
This video expresses the importance of noticing when mental health problems begin.
Youth 1: Hello, Mrs. Jones.
Youth 2: Hey CJ.
Youth 3: Coach.
Youth 4: Emma.
Youth 5: Mom.
Youth 1: Last year, I experimented with painkillers, and then I started taking them every day.
Youth 5: 174 days ago, I started intentionally vomiting after meals.
Youth 3: My anterior cingulate cortex has a population of overactive neurons.
Youth 4: Cutting my arms has become a compulsive behaviour.
Youth 2: I started having suicidal thoughts.
Youth 1: Can you help me find the proper support and medical resources?
Youth 5: Can you help me research the best treatment facilities?
Youth 3: I’d love to chat with you about ideas on how to help manage this.
Text: Said no teen ever
When a young person is struggling, it’s up to us to notice.
Get trained in mental health first aid today.
The power of talk (4:32)
In order to celebrate Bell Let's Talk Day, CAMH invited some clients and their families to discuss the power of talking when it comes to facing mental illness.
The power of talk
Fahad, CAMH client: For me, when I was first going through this, I was terrified.
Cassy, CAMH client: My family wasn’t open to talking about anything. I kind of grew up in a family that’s, like, we don’t talk about our problems.
Cassandra, CAMH client: A lot of the time, especially when it comes to parents, sometimes they’ve had all these years to overhear and learn these stigmas, and these whole concepts and ideas of what it actually means to have a mental health or mental illness.
Toshio, CAMH client: Right now, I think it’s important to speak up about mental illness, especially for younger people. I might have wanted to hear some things. I might have needed a little bit of inspiration when I was first experiencing my symptoms.
Fahad, CAMH client: It was really hard for me to ask people for help when I realized that I needed it.
Caroline, CAMH client: The conversation hasn’t really started in relation to psychotic illnesses, and I think that people definitely need to talk about it more.
Ephrem, CAMH client: There is a stigma attached to it. So talking about it is very important because it will remove this stigma and then it’ll be easier for people to recover from it.
Cassandra, CAMH client: Talking has really been almost like a platform for healing in a way, because I don’t really think that you can get better if you’re not willing to really face that problem and talk about it.
Elizabeth, family member: Talking is really important—just to check in with others and get out of your own head.
Cassy, CAMH client: Somebody will be struggling and they won’t know what’s going on with them, and they’ll feel ashamed for feeling the way that they feel. And I feel like you shouldn’t feel guilty or ashamed of something you don’t necessarily have control over.
Caroline, CAMH client: There has to be an environment where people feel safe to talk about it, and if people are going to call you names or call you crazy, then you’re probably not going to talk about it. So, it requires a lot of courage, but also it requires the right kind of environment.
Toshio, CAMH client: I tried to find spaces where I feel welcome, and this hospital has spaces like that. It’s quite good that way. You can open up with friends who’ve been through similar things.
Elizabeth, family member: CAMH has places you can call, helplines.
Ephrem, CAMH client: I have learned a lot since I joined CAMH. I’m really, really glad. Right now I’m in a good relationship with my relatives because they know. I educated them. And they know from the media as well.
Cassandra, CAMH client: Having billboards everywhere with the Bell Let’s Talk, and having it all come to this, you know, “shining light” that everyone’s seeing. It’s really made this kind of inclusive, open environment.
Fahad, CAMH client: When those ad campaigns first came out, I saw that, you know what, there’s people going through it every single day. And it’s okay for me to ask someone for help and try and figure it out.
Cassy, CAMH client: I’ve definitely seen a lot of people on social media spread awareness and it makes them feel more comfortable and inclined to actually discuss mental health issues.
Toshio, CAMH client: It’s nice to have a media company doing things like that because obviously, it can get broadcasted and the word can get out a bit more.
Cassandra, CAMH client: Before, I would have to come up with some elaborate excuse to get out of work or try and say that I was sick so I wouldn’t have to go to school. Now, I can just say, “I’m having a bad day. It’s, you know, I’ve been dealing with some depression and stuff.” People are like, okay, instead of running and screaming, which is really great.
Cassy, CAMH client: Even people I don’t know come up to me and talk to me about what they’re going through. I’m very open about it. A lot of people know that I’m in recovery and I’m open to people sending other people who need help my way. I’m very, I try to be very empathetic and supportive of other people.
Toshio, CAMH client: I just actually gave a talk in a Sunday forum at my church a few days ago. And it’s amazing. When you open up, you’ll find you’ll find you have a lot more supporters and you think at times.
Elizabeth, family member: More now than ever, there are resources available and the most important thing is to talk to those people that can help you get through the tough times.
Ephrem, CAMH client: I’m really comfortable right now. Very, very safe. So, if I can do it, others can do it as well.