They told their stories about therapy. And we love them for it.

“It happens slowly, then all at once.” This saying is used for many things in life including: Success, falling in love, and major changes in society. At June Health we believe that we are on the brink of a major shift in the way mental and emotional health are viewed in America. It has happened slowly over the last 30+ years, and we are close to a tipping point. There are many indicators, including the ever-increasing number of celebrities and public figures who speak up about their own emotional health, and the benefits of self-care & therapy. We want to consistently recognize  as many of these people as we can, including a special thanks to a few of our own New York natives. In this post, we highlight five people who earned our respect:

Jessica Alba

Recently, Jessica Alba spoke openly about how she chose to see a therapist with her 10 year old daughter. The Hollywood Reporter writes about how she wanted to do this to “learn to be a better mother to her and communicate better with her (daughter).”

Respect to a very public figure like Jessica Alba for being open, honest and humble about seeking help in what is one of the most complicated, and scrutinized, things a person can do in life – becoming a parent. She went on to speak about how she personally grew up in an environment where discussing these types of topics didn’t happen, and how inspiring it is for her to now do this with her own children.

We believe all parents can benefit from therapy. In particular, a few of the important topics a trained therapist can help with are: the intricacies of ‘leadership’ at home, emotional regulation, and balancing nurturing behavior with appropriate boundaries. We support parents who seek help and guidance to become the best parents they can be.

Howard Stern
Being Heard & Listened To

Whatever your views are on Howard Stern’s shock-jock style of radio, we respect his authenticity in speaking out about how therapy has helped him to live a better life.   

In a recent interview with Good Morning America, Stern talked about how he was going through a divorce and was scared out of his mind. He says he began to question whether he could be in a successful relationship with anyone – female or male.  

Stern tells the story of his first session of therapy as being “mind blowing”, and the power of feeling like he was heard and fully listened to. Over time, he says he began to appreciate how really, truly hearing someone can often lead to unexpected and incredibly meaningful conversations.

We believe the most important factor in the success of therapy is the therapist & client relationship, and encourage everyone to find a therapist who really listens and helps you feel seen, heard, and supported – even when dealing with difficult or uncomfortable feelings.

Kevin Love
Everyone is Going Through Something

In what is a really wonderfully authentic piece of writing, Kevin Love talks openly about his panic attacks. In what we believe is a universally powerful statement, he says “If you’re suffering silently like I was, then you know how it can feel like nobody really gets it.” There is a saying in the therapy world that says, “you are only as sick as your secrets”, and we respect Kevin Love for speaking publicly  about something very deep and personal.

Love also goes on to talk about how society has a perception of how men and boys are supposed to act – this sort of playbook – “be strong and don’t talk about your feelings”, and how these societal models of how to act are so ingrained that they can operate on an invisible level in the background.   

Lastly, Love describes his sessions with a therapist as refreshing. He says that although it’s easy to think we know ourselves, when we look deeper, there can be so much more inside. His candor about the therapy process is inspiring as he refers to it as “work”, and that it can be awkward and even terrifying at times. We agree with Love that therapy is not a magical solution, however, it is an excellent step in the lifelong process of self-love and self-care. We encourage everyone to read Kevin Love’s inspiring words.

Charlamagne tha God
Lack of Information

Radio host Charlamagne has consistently been an advocate of mental health. In a recent interview with Hill.TV, he spoke frankly about how mental health issues remain stigmatized in the black community simply because of a lack of information, even between family members. He speaks candidly about how he learned the history of therapy in his family, and openly shares that had he known about his mother’s experience with therapy 20 years ago, it might have helped him understand sooner that therapy is a great resource.

In words we fully support, he goes on to say: “The problem is just the lack of information and I think that we think there’s something wrong with therapy which is so weird because, you don’t have no problem if you’re out of shape going to the gym.” We agree. Why should someone receive praise and encouragement for going to the gym, but be treated differently for caring for their mental and emotional health?   

We respect Charlamagne’s advocacy for taking care of our mental health, and his efforts to help make it known that there are plenty of therapists and other resources available out there to help with mental and emotional health.

Jada Pinkett Smith & Will Smith
Couples Therapy to Save Our Relationship; Sex Addiction.

Respect to both Jada Pinkett and Will Smith for candidly talking about how relationships definitely aren’t always easy – and that this is normal! In an interview with The Sun, Will Smith states, “I’ve done a lot of marriage counseling” and “Once you do marriage counseling the truth comes out.” Talking about the honesty of their counseling sessions, he goes on to say that by revealing the truth and speaking openly, you can reach very dark moments. And more importantly that those dark moments can lead to incredible growth. He says, “I think that’s the cleansing before you get to the other side that is understanding and moving forward with the relationship.”    

In addition to their candidness about couples therapy, Pinkett has also been very open about some of the things she’s worked through in her past – including pornography and sex addiction. In a recent interview, she remarked, “maybe I’ll say I had an unhealthy relationship to porn at one point in my life where I was trying to practice abstinence.” She also showed the same openness when talking about sex saying, “When I was younger, I definitely think I had a sex addiction of some kind, yes, that everything could be fixed by sex.”

In society, it’s not easy to acknowledge that our relationships can be highly flawed, let alone speak candidly about our sex habits. We respect celebrities Jada Pinkett and Will Smith for their openness about therapy.

In Conclusion
While we have chosen 5 people whom we respect for speaking out about therapy and emotional health, there are many more. And fortunately, this number keeps increasing. We believe that every time someone speaks up, whether that person is a celebrity, public figure or not, we push society a little further towards embracing the importance of therapy and emotional health.

More articles on emotional health here.

Photo Credits:

Jessica Alba – JD Lasica
Howard Stern – Bill Norton
Kevin Love – Keith Allison
Charlamagne tha God – Fila, USA
Will Smith – Gage Skidmore
Jada Pinkett – Dominick D.

License:  All images except Will Smith, Jada Pinkett images licensed under Creative Commons.  Modified only to fit on page.   Will Smith, Jada Pinkett images licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike

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