Bipolar Disorder

What We Can Learn about Mental Health From Kanye West

Kanye West’s over the top personality is not new to anyone that has followed him over the years. Aside from his music, Kanye’s attitude and confidence with the public is one of the many reasons people fell in love with him.

Over the past few years, Kanye West has had many conflicting moments. From his rants on SNL, to an album cover saying “I hate being bipolar it’s awesome.” Not to mention his sudden support for Donald Trump being a shock to the public.

Kanye’s past outrageous moments seemed to be settling down over the past few months– until 2020 came along and he announced that he would be running for president, and during his campaign tour, ended up having very questionable speeches. These moments were followed by many tweets about his family, the current state of society, as well as how he doesn’t believe in slavery.

Despite news outlets and different tabloids mocking Kanye and his statements, this whole situation is much more than just a musician sending a few outlandish tweets. Kanye West’s situation is very important to treat in a sensitive manner, considering his mental health issues that he has openly spoken about in the past. 

West’s wife, Kim Kardashian West as well as other celebrities have spoken out about how his situation is very serious, and not a matter to be joked about. The situation can escalate in ways that many people do not realize. It is for this reason that it is important not mock or shame these statements because of West’s bipolar and mental disorders. In order for a person dealing with these issues to get help, they must feel validated and not shamed into getting help. As well as for the public not to act like they are experts on what West and his family are dealing with in regards to mental health. 

One of the most challenging parts of this for West has to be the size of the platform he has. Millions of people are witnessing his struggles, and with the help of social media, they are easily able to pick him apart. Many people that don’t even know the extent of his situation– or what is truly going on– are giving their opinions or mocking what he is going through. This has the potential to damage not only Kanye’s mental health even more–but to damage the mental health of millions of others who are living with mental illnesses every day and reading the responses in real time.

As this continues to be blown up on a global scale, we are able to see how mental illness affects not only the person struggling with the illness, but their family, friends, co-workers, and loved ones too.

This situation with Kanye West only further proves that anyone can be struggling with a mental illness. No matter how much money, success, or power they may have. But the most important thing to realize as a bystander, is that when we are witnessing events such as these occur–celebrity or not– we have a choice. We have a choice to either respond carelessly with haste and judgement, or to reach deeper and respond with compassion and empathy.

What will you choose?

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