Sunday 22 January 2017

Kate Middleton on the Need for Openness About Mental Health Issues

Strides in treating mental health issues go hand-in-hand with a willingness to engage in candid conversation about the topic, a fact that Kate Middleton urged powerfully in a speech on Tuesday at London's Institute of Contemporary Arts.

Last year, Middleton, her husband Prince William, and brother-in-law Prince Harry worked to create Heads Together, a campaign that focuses on helping people deal with mental health struggles openly and without stigma. Fundraising for the organization at a recent event, Middleton gave an impassioned speech outlining Heads Together's mission, and acknowledging how difficult it may be for one to seek help when they're in pain. As Mashable reports, the Duchess of Cambridge said, "The challenge that so many people have is not knowing how to take that first step of reaching out to another person for help ... Admitting that they are not coping. Fear or reticence, or a sense of not wanting to burden another, means that people suffer in silence—allowing the problem to grow larger and larger unchecked."

Middleton explained that as she works with Prince William and Prince Harry on bettering the discourse about and treatment for mental health issues, the Royal Family is devoted to making it easier to ask for assistance. "We have heard time and time again in the course of our work how talking can help heal hidden challenges that we can't deal with alone," she said, explaining, "The question that me, William, and Harry have asked ourselves is, how can we get more people to start talking? How do we encourage people to take the first step?"Prince William also opened up about the subject, speaking to the centrality of mental health to one's overall well-being. He insisted, "For too long, it has been a case of keep quiet and carry on." "Mental health matters to each and every one of us ... It matters just as much as our physical health," he said.

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