Myths that propagate the vision of Asian American and Pacific Islander people as impervious to mental health issues are dangerous to them and also hurtful to other people of color, according to Julie Feng, on website “The Body is Not an Apology.” When faced with her own surprise at hearing of the mental health challenges of a friend, she challenged this response and, in this blog entry, delves into the stigma around mental health which prevents people in this community from discussing mental health challenges.
She challenges the view of Asian Americans as more self-contained than other races, not only as a form of benevolent racism that harms other people of color, but as a justification to continue pretending that these problems do not exist in the community. She discusses the number of people who need treatment but do not seek it, not only because treatment can be difficult to access because of barriers including language and knowledge, but also from shame.
Her heartfelt call to action includes an appeal to advocates including family, doctors, teachers and friends to be aware and ready to help. She invites everyone to take place in finding answers to these problems, first by making the commitment to do better.
Read the blog here.
Check out the Body is Not an Apology website here.