Let’s Talk About Mental Health

So, I won’t lie, son. The suicides of both Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain threw me for a loop, man. Now, my wife is way more familiar with Spade than me, but I was always a big fan of Bourdain, fam. In any case, their respective deaths hit close to home for me, bruh. Look, I’m no stranger to talking about mental health on this blog, folks. On the real, I’ve written multiple articles about my own struggles with depression. All I know is, we need to talk WAY more openly about mental illness. Frankly, it could save our life or the life of a loved one.

Ok, real talk, I’m not going to go into much depth about the particulars of Spade’s and Bourdain’s deaths. Shit, that’s what Google is for, son. However, I want to talk about depression and the damage it can do to our psyches, man. Now, for me, I can’t say that I’ve ever contemplated suicide. But, there were definitely times in my life where I didn’t care if I lived or died. Like, I never cut my wrists or tried to hang myself, but I would FREQUENTLY drive highly intoxicated. In my mind, if I happened to just run off of the road, I wouldn’t really give a shit, fam.

Now, as ashamed as I am to say this, being a father didn’t immediately change my destructive behavior. Keeping it a buck, my first son was barely a year old when I was in danger of losing my family. My then-girlfriend (now-wife) broke up with me because of my emotional distance, excessive drinking, partying and infidelity. Real talk, I knew I needed to make a change and FAST. Since college, my homie Mitch suggested therapy, but I always resisted. All I can say is, at that time, I knew it was now or never, bruh.

Anyway, I told that entire story because I want to stress the importance of getting help, son. Honestly, I didn’t even know I had mental issues until I saw someone. From there, so much of my previous behavior started to make sense, man. Listen, I was using all of my vices as coping mechanisms as opposed to getting to the root of the problem. Sadly, I don’t know what was eating at both Spade and Bourdain. All I can say is, it’s truly heartbreaking that they weren’t able to find the relief they desperately needed, fam.

In the end, I don’t want anyone to feel alone, son. If anybody is having mental issues or thoughts of suicide, there’s an outlet, man. Ultimately, there’s therapy and/or medication to help with those cognitive struggles. There are prevention hotlines to help curve those suicidal thoughts. Furthermore, even if we’re not the ones having the problems, I want all of us to be a helping hand and/or ear to anyone who is struggling. At the end of the day, I wish individuals like Spade and Bourdain saw the beauty in their respective lives. But, it’s not to late for those who are still here. That is all. LC out.

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Depression Is A B*tch

So, I won’t lie, son. This post is a little hard for me to write, man. I mean, as much as I engage with the outside world, I’m still a pretty private person. In any case, at this particular moment, I feel like being transparent with everyone. Not only for my own well-being, but for anyone else who may be in my shoes. All in all, depression is a bitch and I know it affects a large number of folks out there.

Ok, anyone who follows this blog knows that I took a week off from writing recently. Now, as a disclaimer, I told people that I was taking a break because I was “burned out.” The truth is, my longtime depression has been kicking me in the ass for some weeks now. Frankly, I didn’t want to write about anything, fam. In addition, I haven’t wanted to go to work and I’ve had no interest in answering phone calls. *Sigh* I guess those are the breaks when depression rears its ugly ass head, bruh.

Now, if I’m being real, I believe a lot of my current state is due to anxiety. Namely, anxiety about the future. Look, anyone who knows me knows that I live in my head. I’m constantly planning and constantly trying to figure out my next move. Anyway, despite the fact that life is going really well right now, I’m still trying to map out the road ahead of me. For example, I’m trying to figure out where my career is going. Also, I’m trying to figure out where this blog is going. Hell, I’m even trying to figure out where my music is going. All of this while trying to be the best husband and father I can be. By and by, I’m trying my hardest to ignore that annoying ass self-deprecating voice in my head.

With all of that being said, I am super thankful for the people who check in on me. In all honesty, this post isn’t really about LC at all. On the real, I want to talk to anybody out there who may be going through their own issues at the moment. Listen, don’t be afraid to reach out to family and friends. Don’t be afraid to speak up about any trials or tribulations. Real talk, there’s no need to feel ashamed about it. A lot of times, people don’t get help because of their own personal hang-ups. All I can say is, none of us should let our idiosyncrasies hold us back from getting better. In the end, like I said in a previous post, it’s okay to not be okay. Ultimately, acknowledging it is the only way to move forward. That is all. LC out.

217-213

Now, for anyone who’s confused by the title of this post, let me explain. Those numbers represent the votes it took for the GOP to destroy healthcare. At this point, if anyone has a pre-existing condition, then get ready for Hell. The Republicans have essentially ensured that the sick among us won’t be insured. All I know is, the 2018 midterm elections can’t come soon enough.

To begin, let me talk about myself for a second. In my lifetime, I’ve dealt with depression, migraines, acne and multiple knee surgeries. In addition, my mother has multiple sclerosis, my family has a long history with diabetes and I’ve lost several loved ones to cancer. All of this is notable because every condition I’ve just listed is considered a pre-existing condition. Under the American Health Care Act, insurance companies can now make healthcare unaffordable for people like us.

Essentially, under this new bill, insurers can raise premiums for anyone with a pre-existing condition. Basically, if anyone is sick and can’t afford a plan, they’ll have to deal with high-risk pools. These pools give companies the right to charge sick people higher prices than the general population.

In my eyes, it’s like people are being punished for being unwell. All I want to know is, why is being sick such a fucking crime? Why do our elected officials care so little about the less fortunate? Hell, based on statistics, the 11 states with the highest rates for pre-existing conditions all voted for Donald Trump. Well, I hope they’re all happy with their choices when they can’t get a doctor to cure them.

Ultimately, I’m at a loss for words, son. In the end, I better see everyone at the ballot box during the midterm elections. We need to get these crooked motherfuckers out of office, man. *Sigh* LC out.

Drake Is A Certified Clown

So, let me start this post off by saying I’m a fan of Drake’s music. While I believe his Views album is nothing more than weed plate material, when it comes to his overall discography, I rock out with most of Drake’s records. Now, I feel like I needed to give that disclaimer because any time someone criticizes someone else, they’re automatically labeled a “hater.” With that being said, after hearing the bullshit he said about Kid Cudi on “Two Birds, One Stone,” Drake is looking like a real bozo to me right now. As a man who’s very recently written about mental illness, the fact that Drake would poke fun at Cudi’s situation says A TON about him. All I know is, I’ve lost a lot of respect for him because of this.

Ok, yes, I know Cudi dissed Drake first. Hell, I even wrote about that situation on this blog too. However; at some point, we all need to be responsible. Even though Cudi technically drew first blood, once the entire situation was put in its proper perspective, Drake should’ve let this silly feud go. Frankly, to me, it doesn’t matter when Drake recorded the song. If he recorded it BEFORE he knew about Cudi’s issues, he should’ve kept that record to himself. If he recorded the song AFTER he knew about Cudi’s issues, then he’s a pure asshole, man. Either way, there was a much better way to approach this circumstance and Drake did NOT do the right thing.

Now, I may be getting ahead of myself here. Let me actually tell everyone what Drake said about Cudi. During his extended verse on the aforementioned song, Drake uttered the following words:

You were the man on the moon,

Now you just go through your phases,

Life of the angry and famous,

Rap like I know I’m the greatest,

Then give you the tropical flavors,

Still never been on hiatus,

You stay xanned and perked up,

So when reality set in you don’t gotta face it.

Really, Aubrey? Fucking really, man? Just from reading these lyrics, it seems very apparent that he was aware of Cudi’s illness and wrote this on purpose. So, that basically makes him a worthless piece of shit. I mean, where are his people, son? No one in the studio told him this was a sucker move? Mental illness isn’t a fucking punchline, man! On the real, since he’s the biggest rapper in the world, I bet he just figured his fans would ride with his fuck shit. However; as social media is currently showcasing, people aren’t cool with his stance here. Even if he has a legitimate gripe with Cudi, there are so many other angles to take. He could talk about Cudi’s music. He could talk about Cudi’s strained relationship with Kanye West. Shit, he could even talk about how Cudi’s show, How To Make It In America, got cancelled years back. But nooooo, Drake decided to be a dick and kick a man below the belt. What a fucking clown, son.

In the end, I simply can’t respect what Drake did here. This is Rap music, son. Rap music, bro. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not that serious, man. However; mental illness is serious. Making jokes about someone’s well-being is not what real men do. Then again, what can I expect from someone who’s made an entire career out of being the male version of Taylor Swift? I’m out. Good day.

The F*cked Up Psyches Of Kid Cudi & LC

So, while I don’t often divulge information about myself, the latest news about Kid Cudi has inspired me to open up. Honestly, any time I hear stories about depression and/or suicide, it hits close to home for me. With that being said, I’m glad to see Cudi be proactive about his mental health. Ultimately, I just wish more of us in the Black community will do the same.

Now, reports came out earlier this week about Cudi checking himself into rehab. Going further, he cited depression and suicidal thoughts as the catalyst for this move. This particular story came on the heels of him lashing out at Kanye West and Drake, in conjunction with reports about the threats he made to his daughter’s mother. While I originally joked about the rap beef portion of all of this, it’s clear now that Cudi is truly having issues at the moment. At this point, I feel like someone such as myself should’ve seen the signs.

To be clear, I’m personalizing this because I understand what Kid Cudi is feeling. While our lives may be very different, the mentality is not. Keeping it 100, I suffer from clinical depression. In addition, when I’m at my low points, I also have issues with alcohol. Unfortunately, I’ve used booze as a coping mechanism for my mental state at various times. To be truthful, I’ve had two really dark patches in my life: my junior year of college and the first year of my oldest son’s life. During the former time period, I was dealing with family (daddy) issues, living conditions back home, failing a couple of subjects and being at odds with my former girlfriend. During the latter time period, I was unhappy with my career, struggling as a new dad and at odds with my then-girlfriend/now-fiancée. In both scenarios, I was a very destructive human being. While the people around me loved me, they couldn’t necessarily help me out of my despair.

To that end, I don’t think the Black community talks enough about mental health. Until this day, I don’t believe my mother even believes I suffer from depression. I mean, damn what the doctors say, right? Honestly, I’ve heard the phrase “man up” from more people than I’d like to admit. With everything Black people have to deal with in this country, we don’t give each other the space to not be ok. Fuck it, though, man. Sometimes we are NOT ok. No one should ever be afraid to admit that. The only way to truly improve a situation is to first acknowledge that it even exists. So, hats off to Kid Cudi for doing that. I’d much rather him take this action than spiral out of control. He’s way too young to implode.

In the end, I want everyone reading this to be honest with themselves. I want everyone to ask themselves “am I alright?” If the answer is no, there’s no need to panic. There are therapists to talk to and medicine to take, only if necessary. Ultimately, the sooner we all know how we’re really doing, the sooner we can figure out where we’re really going. Good day.