If The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry are gathering at the round table to discuss mental health it must be serious. Many of our African American brethren think that therapy makes you a sucker or weak. Actually, exercising your mind and talking through problems and life’s situations can provide healing and a clear mind and aid building stronger and more productive citizens.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, therefore, rolling out sat down with Robin Lynn Griggs, the author of Broken: 2B Or Not 2B That Is the Question? to talk about life, mental health and what we can expect next from her wisdom, knowledge and growth in Jesus Christ.
Why is so difficult to ask for help in the mental health arena?
I believe it’s difficult to ask for help because so many are afraid of how they will be viewed by others and most don’t want anyone in their business. As long as you keep it hidden, you can’t get the help you truly need.
What is your definition of broken?
My definition of broken means to be hurt, wounded, damaged and shattered. All of these words some would say carries a negative connotation but I read in one of my devotionals that broken could also mean strength under control, now this definition was so powerful to me because we always look at the negative first and this has impacted why we won’t come forward when we are dealing with issues.
Do you think the African American man is broken and how does that impact the African American woman and child?
I believe we have so many men who are broken and don’t realize that they are and some will convey that through different types of behavior that I would like to call abuse, whether it is verbally or physically. That can impact the child who has grown up and been a witness, then you have women who equate abuse to love. Neither of the two is healthy for anyone involved.
What is the first step in getting help?
I believe the first step in getting help is to acknowledge you have an issue and be willing to confront it rather than to hide it so that you can get the right kind of help, and take the necessary steps needed for a change to take place.
What would you say to the atheist and nonbeliever to spread the Gospel?
I would say that I love you and I will continue to pray for you, and let my life do and be a witness for me. We have to learn how to exercise discernment and not always be so quick to express our thoughts. Our job is to live and be the example and let God handle the rest.
How do you feel about Iyanla Vanzant and what role do you feel the media plays in making people of aware of mental help? Do reality shows help or hinder the forward progress of our community?
I believe she is an amazing woman full of knowledge and wisdom. In order to help anyone who desires the help, you cannot be afraid to speak the truth. I think that media needs to speak the whole truth if it is to be used to bring awareness. The reality show has helped progress our communities for so many I am sure because she is helping real people who desire real help and want to change, so they are exposing themselves and unveiling their issues to millions who can be judgmental and opinionated and we need more willing to become transparent.
What words of advice would you give to the person who feels that they are at their wit’s end?
My advice would be “I know it doesn’t look good or even feel good at the moment but I am living proof anything is possible when you choose to keep getting up, and you continue to make a decision daily not to give up on God because He will never give up on you.” Faith without works is dead and God loves our faith because that shows him you believe and you trust in his word and timing for your life.
Broken is available on Amazon.com. Click here for more information on author Robin Griggs.