On Saturday Afternoon we took to Mapaseka Koetle’s Gorge Cafe in Sandton to gather with ZAlebs that were bringing attention to a a condition called bipolar by, sharing their stories and speaking against the stigma surrounding the condition.
The event held was aimed at creating conversations around mental health and finding creative ways to eradicate the stigma amongst the black community, that deems the condition to be for “crazy” people, thus creating a safer environment for those that live with it, Scandal actress Nomvelo Makhanya and Thuli Thabethe were some of the A-listers who shared their stories.
“Before coming out with my illnesses I was scared that society would isolate me and I would lose my job but the opposite happened, the love and support I got from the Scandal team is beyond what I expected...I'm thankful for such platforms it allows me to feel bare and naked and speak about my illnesses in confidence..” Nomvelo said
Thuli Thabethe was also present to share her story that brings attention to the hereditary condition, explaining how taking care of her father caused her to become OCD (which is another form of mental health)
“Having lived with my father who's suffering from Bipolar, I had to clean up after him and started becoming OCD. My dad would normally do unordinary things like play music at night on the loudspeaker and make a meal in the suburb we wouldn't judge him because we understood his situation and that's how I learned to take care of him. I thank my father because today I'm able to understand mental health” said Thuli.
The host of Matters of the Brain, Rephethile Kgwale who hosted the initiative also contributed to sharing knowledge on the condition saying: “Bipolar disorder is when you move in between two polars...it’s when your chemicals become unbalanced in your brain, so when your chemicals get embalmed when you switching between moods, one will be called manic, and hyper, so you move from being depressed to being hyper, most of the time…”
Listen here to know more about it:
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Main image credit: Supplied