A new project, #IAmStigmaFree, features women, most of which are LDS, sharing their personal stories of living with mental illness.
Featuring women who struggle with addictions, bipolar disorder, depression, anxiety, and more, the campaign is made up of a number of videos where each woman discusses her struggles and how she fights to overcome them. This new project was created by Ashley Sargeant, the founder of Don’t Stop Sargeant, a website dedicated to providing resources and help to early-returned missionaries and those who struggle with mental illness.
New videos will be released each day this week, culminating in a music video with all of the women on October 31. UPDATE: Watch it here.
“About a month ago I heard Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” for the first time and instantly fell in love with it. This was during the month of September and my social media feeds were exploding with posts about mental health awareness and suicide prevention, as is tradition each year. I felt impressed to add my voice to this very important conversation in a creative and memorable way but I wasn’t sure exactly how to do it,” said Sargeant in her blog post discussing the project. “As one who lives with Bipolar II, anxiety, depression, and strong symptoms of ADD, OCD, and PTSD I have a lot to say. And then a close relative had a devastating experience with mental health that really motivated me to follow through on that impression. I had this crazy idea to make a music video to “Fight Song” with as many other women as I could find to spread awareness about mental illness and to break free from the negative stigma. I believed then just as much as I believe now that our message will change the world.”
The women featured are Bree Campbell, Karli Carr, Sarah Christensen, Ashley Frederickson, Seantay Hall, Suzy Jordan, Kate Lundquist, Maryanne Nelson, Jessica Oberg, Megan Rogers, Ashley Sargeant, Rebecca Sato, Ashlee Schroeppel, Kylie Spilker, Meghan Stolp, Saydee Taylor, and Lindsay Titus.
You can watch the individual videos released so far below. We’ll add the additional videos as they’re uploaded.
Meet Bree Campbell — a fearless fighter of ADHD, anxiety, depression, and PTSD.
Meet Sarah Christensen — a fearless fighter of depression.
Meet Seantay Hall — a fearless fighter of anxiety and depression.
Meet Kate Lundquist — a fearless fighter of anxiety and depression.
Meet Megan Rogers — a fearless fighter of anxiety and depression.
Meet Rebecca Sato — a fearless fighter of postpartum obsessive compulsive disorder (PPOCD).
Meet Kylie Spilker — a fearless fighter of ADD, anxiety, depression, rape, and sexual assault.
Aleah is a graduate of Southern Virginia University, where she studied English, Creative Writing, and Dance. She now works full time as a marketing and product manager, writer, and editor. Aleah served a mission in California and loves baking, Lang Leav poetry, Gaynor Minden pointe shoes, and Bollywood movies.