In honor of BYU’s mental health awareness week, BYU quarterback Tanner Mangum took to Instagram to publicly discuss his mental health.
Mangum revealed that he suffers from mild depression and anxiety and that he’s grateful to have the opportunity to stand up for others who also suffer.
It's Mental Health Awareness Week here at BYU and I want to speak out about something that I consider very personal and real. Not many people know that I suffer from mild depression and anxiety. I take antidepressants every day to help with my condition, have visits with a counselor, and I am not ashamed; on the contrary, I am proud to embrace my own personal journey, accept and love myself — flaws and all. I am grateful to be able to raise my voice, and stand up for those who experience similar struggles. This might be surprising to many, due to my normally optimistic, outgoing, and happy personality, but I hope we can understand that just because someone is beaming brightly on the outside, doesn't mean they are free from their own personal struggles underneath the surface. We are all human, each with unique battles, and I promise that these battles are better fought together, not alone. Mental illness is one of my personal battles and I want to offer my love and support to all those who suffer in one way or another. You are not alone. There is help. Let's focus on accepting and loving one another for who we are and celebrate our humanity. It's a beautiful thing. Let's erase the stigma surrounding mental health. #mentalhealth #mentalhealthawareness
A post shared by Tanner Mangum (@tannermangum) on Apr 3, 2017 at 4:16pm PDT
While the contents of the post may not seem like much to some, given the stigma of depression and anxiety that exists, it’s awesome that Mangum came forward in this way. Remember, mental health is just as important as physical health.
Mangum became BYU’s starting quarterback in 2015 after Taysom Hill was injured in BYU’s season-opener. After Hill returned for the 2016 season, Mangum became the starter for BYU’s bowl game after Hill suffered an elbow injury late in the season. With Hill’s eligibility exhausted, Mangum will likely be the team’s starter in 2017.
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