Editorial: In the wake of everything in our exterior world, take care of your mental health

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Take care of your mental health.

As Rowan students, we’re all likely taking five classes, we participate in extra-circulars, perhaps we also balance a job. Somewhere in there, we have to find time to eat, and even socialize. It’s a lot.

It’s that time of the year where students frequently start saying, “I’m getting really overwhelmed,” or “I don’t have a handle on anything.”

There’s also a lot going on in national news that’s enough to cause some headaches: The building conflict between the United States and North Korea involving nuclear warfare. Most recently, there’s Hurricane Maria’s havoc in Puerto Rico, among the other two major hurricanes that battered parts of Florida, Louisiana and Texas during the past couple weeks.

The society around us isn’t conductive to slowing down and taking breaks. Technology is no longer optional, it’s a necessity. We’re required to use Groupme to correspond about group assignments, and at Rowan we’re often told to watch our emails for the next homework assignment.

A Rowan announcer was sent out stating that a student at Rowan University recently died. This tragic loss is likely to affect the emotional health of some at our university.

So, what now? Are there ways to take breaks? There is no good answer, and while this question is better answered on an individual basis, it’s important that despite the chaos we take care of our mental health.

Our Wellness Center has dozens of programs designated toward mental health. Their website has its own online screening in which one can evaluate their own mental health. By calling the Public Safety (856-256-4911) and asking for the on-call conselor, they’re available to talk mental health 24 hours a day. Both group and individual therapy is available. We have psychiatric services. “Let’s Talk” sessions, set up across campus, are like walk-in appointments. Licensed counselors are available to help these students at random hours throughout the week. In an interview last year, Associate Vice President for Student Wellness David Rubenstein noted that most of the time, this is like having an unscheduled therapy appointment individually.

The Wellness Center deliberately hired more counselors to serve the needs of those who seek psychological services but were previously deterred by waiting lists. With your student insurance, all of these services are affordable and don’t require one to leave the college campus.

Rowan also does its very best to discuss issues otherwise ignored or marginalized elsewhere in society: we’re hosting a Title IX summit next weekend, and on Monday there will be a Silent Witness Memorial dedicated to commemorating stories of victims of domestic abuse.

At the end of the day, it won’t matter what grade you received in contemporary mathematics or how many clubs you were in. It does matter, however, that you’ve been mentally healthy through taking care of getting those grades and participating in clubs.

Don’t be scared of the stigma. Don’t be afraid of reaching out for help when you need it. We might all be preoccupied with a million things, but everyone has their own mental sanity to take care of.

Do it. And help others do it. Our lives are what matters.

For questions/comments about our editorial, email editor@thewhitonline.com or tweet @TheWhitOnline.

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