Twitter has been responsible for helping plenty of movements gain traction, including mental health advocacy. This week, reporter Hattie Gladwell took this advocacy a step further, encouraging her followers to share what they wish people understood about mental illness with the hashtag
The hashtag gained so much popularity that it started trending on Twitter within a few hours. Gladwell received a variety of responses, ranging from messages about medication to reminders that mentally ill folks are not alone.
Many responses centered around breaking down stereotypes people hold about mental illness.
Some people had more personal messages in mind. “3 years ago today I was being held in a mental hospital for attempted suicide,” one Twitter user wrote. “Nowadays I’m much happier with life but I still have bad days. I wish my family understood mental illness never really goes away.”
Gladwell later tweeted about the success of the hashtag. “So many people are talking about the things they wish others knew about mental illness!” she wrote. “It’s so amazing to see so many using the hashtag.”
The hashtag — and its popularity — show just how important it is to open up dialogues about mental health and listen to those who have struggled with mental illness.