It was the end of 2017, & I was asking today’s bday boy, Theo Fleury, if he had any advice for me, before we launched this movement. He answered by asking me a question: “Are you sure you’re ready for this? The first ones through the wall always get bloodied.”
I knew he was speaking from experience. After all, he had revealed the details of a very controversial male sexual abuse case, involving not only himself, but a famous youth hockey coach in Canada. In the months that followed Theo the revealing of his story – from reporters, naysayers, even past friends, & all different directions, he got bloodied.
And he continues to get bloodied 10 yrs later. Some of the stories we could share at events we have been at, with the comments received, wouldn’t be believed.
But I took Theo’s comments to heart. After yrs of watching nonprofits in this space use the same “politically correct” terminology, use the stat 1/5 mentally ill to describe all who were effected, copying each other’s “stigma campaigns,” taking some money from big pharma, & even touting meds & “talk therapy” above all other treatments, we were going to go down another path, bc the old way just wasn’t working.
It started by launching w a name that included “Crazy” to show that MH is not about 1/5 but lives on a continuum we all inhabit. That led to push back from directors of other organizations who told us, tongue & cheek or not, that word was “triggering.” That has lessened since Nike has shown that repurposing a word like “Crazy” is more than acceptable.
From there it was – how we were using celebs to bind together to tell stories of challenge, instead of sickness…How we were sharing treatment modalities that gave confidence in more than just meds or talk therapy alone…& how we were pointing out the gross injustices of politicians, media, & systems.
Well that has led to program like this one (IG/Fbook), suppressing our messages. Feeding them to fewer. Denying boosts. Conveniently not responding to messages.
That’s ok though. First & foremost we appreciate YOUR support as we try to break through this wall. But I/we promise you, social media channels will not hold us back.
In the coming months look out for – a major documentary with IMG/Endeavor Content group, partnerships with our 5 #SameHere Programs – Schools, Sit-Downs, Service, Sports, & Safe, growth of our @SameHere Show Podcasts, a school partnership in 88 countries, brand partners who will take on the #SameHere mantra as their social responsibility campaign, & much more. It’s our commitment to you, we won’t stop until everyone knows we are all in this together. #SameHere.