Social media rallied around rapper Kid Cudi when he publicly announced his struggle with depression on his Facebook page.
The Cleveland native announced he was checking himself into a treatment center after a longtime battle with anxiety and suicidal urges.
Lauding his transparency, fans took to Twitter to start an important conversation around Black men and mental health.
Depression in the Black community, particularly among men, has always been a hush-hush topic. Because of this stigma, many African-Americans lack education about mental disorders and lack access to reliable health care resources.
But Kid Cudi inadvertently became a leader of a movement when hundreds of men and women were inspired to speak openly about their pain.
Coining the hashtag #yougoodman, Twitter users @DaynaLNuckolls and @TheCosby encouraged men to check in with each other and speak openly about mental health.
@DaynaLNuckolls tweeted, “#YouGoodMan is for Black Men to confess, ask for help, vent, or get pointed in the direction of mental health professionals. …
“#YouGoodMan is a permission slip for vulnerability in a world that hides depression under toxic expressions of masculinity.”
Many others tagged on to the conversation, sharing their experience via the hashtag:
@TheCosby: “It’s ok to say you’re not ok. Self-medication and reckless behavior isn’t the way out of your depression. #yougoodman”
@PiaGlenn: “Fellas it’s OK if you’re ‘not good.’ If yr answer to ‘how are u’ is something other than ‘chillin’’ or ‘everything is everything’ #YouGoodMan”
@KNSZWRTH: “The worst part about depression is when people try to tell you why YOU should or shouldn’t be depressed about #yougoodman”
@itsottwall: “Two weeks ago, I told the truth about my mental and emotional state. It was equally as humiliating as it was liberating. #yougoodman”
@JRocIsMajor_: “Black men it’s ok to express emotions outside of anger. You are human as well. You deserve to feel too. #YouGoodMan”
It was an important moment to bust open the misconceptions about depression to encourage everyone to seek help when they need it.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services of Minority Health, Black people are 10 percent more likely to report having psychological distress than white people. Because our communities are disproportionately affected, public conversations around depression are necessary to point people to resources and support.