Taraji P. Henson New PTSD Foundation

Getting mental health care is nothing to be ashamed of

Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls - https://www.flickr.com/photos/nasahqphoto/31525359096/ Public Domain

https://www.flickr.com/photos/nasahqphoto/31525359096/

Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls - https://www.flickr.com/photos/nasahqphoto/31525359096/ Public Domain

Zandrea Mays, Editor

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Taraji P. Henson, the actress perhaps best known for her roles on “Empire” and in “Hidden Figures”, wants to eradicate stigma against mental health. At Boutique of Hope, she introduced her new foundation named after her father who suffered from PTSD from his participation in Vietnam War. Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation was created due to mental health not usually being included in total health care.

Specifically in African American households, people are usually told to be strong and shield what they are feeling. Henson said, “[T]hat’s not healthy” because you shouldn’t be afraid to see a psychiatrist, while also being able to talk to them about your mental stability.

She remarked that she sees her psychiatrist regularly and will call her anytime she feels anxious. The “Empire” actress gave insight of how her dad was never afraid of “telling the truth”, that he was very open about his PTSD and how war affected him. Henson has a tattoo on her left forearm that says “The Truth” which was inspired by her dad.

Henson also feels that there needs to be a celebrity face behind this foundation because that would bring more insight and publicity to her foundation, while also encouraging people to care more about their mental health. By using her celebrity status, she really wanted to stress that getting mental help is nothing to be ashamed of. She even compared seeing a psychiatrist was similar to seeing your dentist to get a root canal.

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