May 2016 — I was a huge fan of hers, Chamique Holdsclaw, she was the BADDEST baller, part of the legendary Tennessee Vols; I’m so proud of her sharing her story of battling a chemical imbalance. She’s right, the Latino community also thinks religion can cure everything if you just pray it away, but some situations require real medical care! So many stories that I can recall from my friends growing up, things we thought were common so we spoke freely. But now looking back as an adult, I realize a lot of that was due to mental health issues in our communities. It isn’t until I tell childhood stories to friends now and people look at me with crazy eyes, like if I said something horrible. That was when I first started to realize that my stories were different. Then later I had a long conversation with a non-latina friend who was the first one to speak to me to me about mental health. At first I rejected and deflected, but the more she spoke to me the more things made sense and I finally had an answer to some of those childhood questions. Then anger took over, why can’t our community every have these open conversations! Why is mental health such a taboo topic. Any time someone has scary behavior we rush to our churches, and don’t get me wrong I am a believer, but there are some things that require more than prayers. I admire Chamique for sharing her story with us.
– – “The African-American community is a community based on faith. A lot of the source of our strength is church,” the six-time WNBA All-Star said. “For so long we think that’s the No. 1 thing that will get us through anything. It’s, ‘Oh, pray … pray away!’–