Building a Mental Health Community through Social Media

MIEND (Mend)

MIEND TV (pronounced Mend), is the brain child of Julie Korioth.  Julie has always felt strongly about helping others. This feeling led her to get her Masters in Counseling at St. Edward’s University. And for years, her life seemed perfect- from the outside. Her own struggles have convinced her of the need for a community where the topic of Mental Health has no stigma.

Her journey to sobriety and healing is inspiring.  Now, Julie is reaching out to others willing to share their stories surrounding mental health.  The goal of MIEND is to create a safe space for people to share and learn from one another.

“I believe that by mending minds through stories, we can inspire others and create a new path and freedom for our mental health.” – Julie Korioth

Julie shares her own story on her blog: https://www.miend.org/. Through that sharing, her goal is to help others realize they are not alone.

 

How is Social Media Important in Your Process?

Social media has been her primary platform for spreading her message.  She started with a personal site and Facebook page. “I was not expecting as many people to reach out and respond as they have.” Due to the immediate interest, she created her Facebook business page, LinkedIn profile, Instagram and YouTube channels. This early success proves that she has found a subject that affects us all. She has enlisted “Storytellers,” and vlogs the experience of these brave people sharing their own mental health experience.

Her first “Storyteller” was Rachel Dickson.

Rachel is a local children’s author, artist and entrepreneur.

Rachel shared her story about losing her brother and how it changed her life. As a woman, wife and mother she knew she needed to delve into the grief and sadness in order to heal.  Her story is so relatable and heartfelt.

Watch Rachel’s story here:

 

Casey McPherson is a renaissance man.

He is an Austin musician, father, pianist, Founder of To Cure a Rose organization and the Music Director at Riverbend Church.

He, too, suffered in the wake of family suicide and his grief led to self-destruction. His  music and  lyrics  are hauntingly beautiful and offer a glimpse into his pain.

The resilience of spirit is evident when listening to his story. The idea that many people do not discuss mental health or know where to turn is a sad truth. The stigma that can be associated keeps some from the help they need.

 

CK Chin- Austin Restauranteur, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist

CK shared his story around learning to balance his life, business and struggle with ADD.  His tips for clarity were simple and powerful. “Be Self-Aware.” “Don’t Subscribe to Comparison” and “Make Time” are just a few of the mantras I will be trying to incorporate in my daily life.

Some people’s journeys are tragic, some people struggle with the day to day. CK proposes we ask ourselves, “Do I feel balanced?”

 

Mental Health has affected us all…

It does not discriminate. We have all been affected or love someone that has.  Rachel’s painting, “Out of Controversy,” while created to raise awareness and funds for the #BLM movement, is an important depiction for this cause as well.

Art by Rachel Dickson- “Out of Controversy”

“While struggles with mental health were traditionally kept private, in recent years a growing number of sufferers are adopting the opposite tack: sharing their mental health battles with the world, via social media,” (Lofton, 2019).   Many celebrities have taken to social platforms to discuss their own struggles and increase awareness.

Julie is determined to help others through sharing stories. Due to the infinite network possibility of social media, it can prove to be a catalyst for change. If organizations like MIEND can help turn the tide of mental health awareness and acceptance, we can stop shaming and start healing.

 

Julie ended our interview with an Irish word that embodies what she is attempting to accomplish with Miend.

“Meitheal is about community and acceptance, where people come together to help each other and by doing that they are helped in return.”

While many are focused on the destructive nature of social media on our mental health, some organizations, like MIEND, are proving that we can come together for good.

 

 

If you or someone you know has talked about contemplating suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

References:

Korioth, J. (2020). MiendTV blog: Miend Storytellers. Retrieved from: https://www.miend.org/miend-tv

Lofton, T. (2019). KHN: Coming Out About Mental Health On Social Media. Blog. Retrieved from: https://khn.org/news/coming-out-about-mental-health-on-social-media/

 

 

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