8/11/2022 It’s Time We stopped Labeling People As “Always having MH issues” Just Because They’ve Been Open About Theirs In The Past.

Why am I posting an article from December of 2021…abt 7/8 months ago? For a reason that’s so important in this space:

Take a look at the second slide➡️. News revealed yesterday in headlines that Hartman, one of college football’s top QBs, would be sidelined “indefinitely w a non-football-related medical condition.” 

Bc I talk abt MH a lot, & bc I was an athlete & then a sports exec for many yrs, when stories like this break, I get a barrage of emails & texts (said in an appreciative way): “did you see the story abt so & so.” 

In this case, look at the author of both articles – same guy. David Hale, ESPN. But here’s the thing – if you go on to read the full, most recent article, tho they’re being cryptic w the explanation – Hartman’s injury is one that was talked abt on the field, w the trainers, something that can “happen to anyone,” & that he’s excited to rehab it & come back.

This happened to our bud Robin Lehner when he had a concussion 2 seasons ago & everyone talked abt him “relapsing” as the reason for being out. It’s a big reason why athletes DON’T share their MH challenges publicly. Once you do – as was the case in Hale’s first article on Hartman…any time you’re out of action w/o a full public explanation, the world believes you’ve got something “wrong in your head” again…& it’s MH-related. 

We have to get to a place where we understand the body is a full body – physical & mental. You CAN deal w MH challenges, & then get a more traditional physical injury, need time away, & it NOT be related to your MH. 

If someone tears an ACL…then seems to get hit hard in the head in a game & needs to miss time, we don’t say: well they aren’t revealing much, so he/she must have re-torn their ACL. 

MH lives on a continuum just like physical health. They are BOTH susceptible to fluctuations based on life challenges & physical injuries. It’s time we stopped labeling people as “always having MH issues” just bc they’ve been open about theirs in the past.

Let’s not jump to conclusions & understand the body as multi-faceted – a full unit that we are all constantly needing to work on. That would go a long way towards openness. 

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