Do You Know How to Address Mental Illness Stigma in Your Classroom?

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Here you will find helpful information about mental health topics, poetry and words of inspiration and information about Hakeem.

Read on and share!


Do you know how to address mental illness stigma in your classroom?

You probably have heard about stigma or mental illness, but may not know how to define them.  You may feel uncomfortable asking about mental illness.You are not alone.  

There are many myths about mental illness, such as children are just moody and do not experience mental health problems, or people with mental health problems are violent and unpredictable. However, to shift from these ideas we have to know the facts. As a teacher, here’s what you should know about mental illness stigma.

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Bipolar Disorder Unmasked –
Candid Conversations about Mental Illness

You are not your illness nor your label.  You are your experiences.

As a man living with a diagnosed mental illness for over 15 years, I acknowledge my condition.  My mental and physical health are priority – I take medication, I see my doctors, I follow a health diet and exercise regimen.   I also know if I get too little sleep or am in unusually stressful situations for extended time I face the prospect of sinking into a depression or face bouts of anxiety.

At the same time – I am not “bipolar.”

 I have a condition, but I am not my condition. This is an important distinction to make. You can be diagnosed with, but not defined by a label.
Watch this video here where I explore the distinction of Who you are vs. What happened to you.
What do you think about this idea of accepting your diagnosis and illness, but not “being defined” by it?

As always, if you need immediate help call you doctor or 911. Some resources are and  I am sharing my thoughts from my lived experience and this is not medical advice.

Sincerely Yours in Wellness,


In December I published my first book – Magenta Your Conscience, Inspirational Poems & Quotes. In honor of Valentines Day here is an excerpt from my book, a love poem entitled Imprints.  I hope you enjoy! If you are interested in purchasing a copy of my book, please see here.


Woman you…

Woman you have touched my soul

And have imprinted your imprints

On my spirit.

I sincerely hope that I can

Wade in your waters

And wonder through your forests.

I sincerely hope I can blow warm winds

Into the sails of your possibility.

For you,

I would seize the salt in the sea

And mix the extracts in the river

To confuse mother-nature

And make her wonder,

“What has gripped that boy’s heart so

To make him do such mind boggling things.”

For you,

I would teach time

To double-dutch backwards

And then hop-scotch forward,

So he’ll be prancing in circles

And we’ll be able to mingle

In this beautiful moment forever.

For you,

I tell clouds of cumulous nimbus’

To form in the formation of school buses

And carry your precipitation away,

For some how,

When I’m with you,

The sun always seems shine,

You are divine,


Cherubim angels

Pluck peaceful chords

On harpsichords whose notes

Were fashioned by you.

Alpha frequencies forget their phases

And form beta waves

When they bounce off your heartbeats,

Shattering amplitudes

And breaking confused attitudes,


We are one.


I did not know,

That until yesterday,

Woman you have touch my soul

Here is my upcoming calendar:

2/21 – New Haven, CT  –  Yale Black Solidarity Conference – Plenary Workshop

2/24 – Garden City, NY –  Adelphi Psychology Day – Keynote

2/25 – Floral Park, NY   –  Floral Park High School – Student Assembly

2/25 – Old Westbury, NY – Seldom Said Radio Show

2/26 – Garden City, NY – Garden City High School – Student Assembly

3/3 –   Great Neck South High School – Student Assembly

3/3 –   Great Neck North High School – Student Assembly

3/4 –   Elmont Memorial High School – Student Assembly

3/10 – High School of Sports Management – Student Assembly

3/11 – Frederick Douglass Academy – Student Assembly

3/18 –  George Washington Carver HS for Sciences – Student Assembly

3/18 – Queens Community Board 12 – Presentation

3/25 – Manhasset High School – Student Assembly