I guess I’ll start with the news: Kanye West, who late last month abruptly canceled the rest of his Saint Pablo Tour and was taken to UCLA Medical Center on a psychiatric hold, has finally checked out. Kanye “[was] exhausted and currently dealing with sleep deprivation,” People quoted a source as saying. “He went to the hospital at will under the advice of his physician.”
There’s been hundred of articles about the theories behind Kanye’s breakdown, but I thought I would also mention another hip hop artist that sparked discussions about mental health.
Then there was Kid Cudi…
I like Kid Cudi. I loved Man on the Moon: The End of Day. Seriously, Pursuit of Happiness still does something for me seven years later. I loved him on How To Make It In America and I secretly want Netflix to revive this series (even if it’s just for a Gilmore Girls style reunion). Back in October, Kid Cudi checked himself into rehab for depression and suicidal thoughts. The message he posted on his Facebook page is below:
I deserve to have peace. I deserve to be happy and smiling. Why not me?
Kid Cudi is a father, a son, a friend, an artist who has made the world a better place with his music. It was so amazing to see him seek help before he did something to hurt himself and the people who love him. He has helped so many people struggling with their own mental health issues through his music.Not only that, but because he is a celebrity, his openness combats the stigma that persists regarding mental illness.
This conversation on mental health must be normalized, and become just as important as our other health issues we need to address in life.
There are days when I despise social media. However, I loved seeing the hashtag #yougoodman start trending after Kid Cudi’s message. People began to have open and honest discussions on race, masculinity, and depression. However, I’ve watched news and social media blame the Kardashians, diagnose Kanye with everything under the sun, laugh and taunt him. I didn’t see #Yougoodman trending after the Kanye news. I get it. We don’t really know what’s going on. Yeezy didn’t leave us a public statement like Kid Cudi did and he isn’t the most lovable character. However, if this really is a mental health issue, why are we making fun of him?
He’s someone who’s obviously dealing with something heavy and it’s been weighing on him. I was talking to a friend about the situation and he kind of causally and callously said that Kanye just needs to get over his mother’s death already. I talk to my mom every single day and I can’t imagine how I would react if I lost her suddenly. And if that truly is the reason for Kanye’s breakdown, we should be even more sympathetic. He may just be an annoying and outspoken celebrity to you, but I personally like Kanye West’s music and – you can argue you with me on this – truly think he’s an artist and definitely a musical genius who’s been reshaping the sound of hip hop with each album he releases. Celebrity or not, it must be hard to experience that kind of pain.
I just want to say that for anyone, friend or stranger:
You are important.
Your health is important.
Your mental health is important.