written by Mikasha Dawson
Mental Health in Schools
Its close now to three years since my daughter took her own life. My mind has tried over and over to make sense of this nightmare. I have asked myself over and over why? I have questioned the what if’s. I was asked a question by Gary Liberatore at WKTV on the advice I would give to a parent being that I have experienced such a fate. The advice provided was for parents to talk to their kids about suicide, despression and anxiety.
I have sat down with my twelve year old daughter and told her it’s okay not to feel okay and to feel hopeless. I told her I am always gonna be here to listen and nothing you can feel or say is gonna make me love you any less. I am here with a open heart so please always talk to me or someone when or if you ever feel like giving up on life.
As her mom I’m doing my part and I did the same with my beloved daughter bianca but it’s’ not enough. My children are the reason I get up – I wake each day to love them, take care of them and to guide them on growing. I always worry about my youngest daughter, i’m constantly checking on her. I worry if she’s sad deep down inside or feeling the weight of this world coming down on her.
With social media and life moving so fast our brain and what we take in plays a huge factor on how we cope with everyday task with anxiety on the rise and feeling more alone its gonna now take a village to raise our children. My beloved Bianca never told anyone what she was dealing with simply because we treat mental anxiety like its a disease.
These children need to be educated everywhere – and let’s start at home first – but more importantly in school as well; school is one of the biggest parts of our children’s life.
They don’t only go there to learn. In science they go to explore, social studies to relive history, math to manage money, technology to engineer, family consumer science to learn the task on home, physical education to get our dose of exercise. We now are in need of a class that works only on our mental state, our brain and what we take in.
Our way of thinking plays a huge factor on how we cope with everyday tasks and our brains alone need learning on how to help feeling with anxiety and overall hopelessness. The Bee Rose Foundation has been working on ways of making these much needed classes a reality. We are in the process of developing two programs: ‘Bee the Voice’ and ‘Bee Educated.’ We are working with mental health professionals in the development of these programs and have initiated conversations with a local school program in discussing the possibilities of a pilot. I If all goes according to plan, we will take our tragedy and promote and advocate for a change that our schools desperately need.