Day: April 18, 2017

Superheroes and Mental Health

I Love Superheros
Yes… I made a big ol’ picture depicting how much I love superheroes. They are so cool! I mean they have their own individual superpowers and they fight to save those they love

I love watching superhero movies and tv shows! I mean like, I currently I am watching “Gotham”, “The Flash”, “Supergirl”, “Arrow,” and “Legends of Tomorrow”. My favorite superhero is Batman. I own a bunch of comic books (as well as manga). I am definitely looking to watch “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2”, “Wonder Woman”, “Justice League”, “Thor Ragnarok”, “Spiderman: Homecoming” and of course… “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”.

As a child growing up in a domestic violent household, seeing violence day by day made me  feel small , hopeless and hopeless. No matter how many times I mediated my parent fights, no matter how many times I closed the door to my room to block out the arguing, the screaming and fighting, I still felt insignificant and that my life was meaningless. But…whenever I watched superheroes on tv, there were big and powerful. They used their powers to defeat evil and deflect harm away their neighboring communities and the people they loved. But you know what what really amazed me? They didn’t allow their weakness to hold them back.

2007-08-24_124606_5076_400x600

I mean, for example, Superman despite knowing Lex Luthor would wear Kyrptonite to defeat him, he would still go toe to toe against Lex. Or another example, Batman despite have no superpowers, utilizes his personal resources to protect Gothamites from the villains that hope to overpower them.

complicated-grief-disorder

Superheroes, whether they grew up in humble beginnings or affluent backgrounds, showed that grief, tragedy can happen to anyone. But do you know what anyone has the power to do? Make choices. Do they choose to rise above the pain? Or do they allow it to pummel them? If you have read and/or watched any sort of superhero and even supervillain, you’ve seen it happen. Again using Batman as an example, although he is still tormented by the loss of his parents from a young age, he still continues to protect the city and people he loves. Yes, from time to time that pain haunts him, but he recovers from that pain everytime. Sometimes I feel that the loss of his parents takes a harder hit on him than all the bad guys he’s ever faced! It kinda reminds me of this old African proverb:

“When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you.”

94103b9f-5622-4380-ac47-cb31e09c25c6
“I am vengeance. I am the night. I…Am..Batman!”

Recovery from his past hurts helps him from taking harder hits—especially emotionally and psychology—physically from his enemies.  I mean, we’ve all been in a place where past hurts + current circumstances = major damage to our overall well-being. However, the real challenge beings when we ask ourselves will we allow that pain to continue to make us victims? Or…will we become victors?

2768f0f6b37915c4_captain-america-civl-war-all-day

If the pain should knock you—as so to speak—does that mean there is no point from rising again? Or do we get up anyway and continue to fight?

collage-comics-theme-18

Yes, the world of superheros and villains only exist in our comic books, movies, video games and cartoon shows, but the human struggle of overcoming loss, heartache, disappointment and shame is very much real in this world. I have been made up fun of growing up, because of this statement, but where else have authors and comic writers got the ideas for most famous heroes and most infamous villains? Their butts? No.  Simply these fictional characters embody human strength and struggle. That’s why in addition  to readers and viewers admiring superheros and their powers, they can also identify with, for example, being different or being from a foreign land (*coughs Trump Administration*).

kelly
Senator Kelly in X-Men #58

I think such human experiences caught on comic books are reason why they still exist and why they continue to thrive. Heck…that’s why I read comic books.

superheroes20reading

ac46855934342c7e4e3825c61208b4e6

Below are websites that use comic book heroes to help better explain mental illness and bring about mental health awareness. Click on the sites below for more information:

Resources

Pop Culture Hero Coalition

Superhero Therapy: Psychologist, Scientist, Writer, and Geek

The Arkham Sessions

Under the Mask: A Deeper Look At Heroes and Villains

For More Information:

Comicspedia: The Intersection of Comic Books and Clinical Psych

Geek Therapy: Episode 40: Stories Can Be Healing

What Is Superhero Therapy?

Self Rescuing Princess

princess-leia-shirt

I love going to Her Universe.com! It’s the best place to find clothes that you can get your geek on and yet still look fabulous! I own a couple of Star Wars inspired outfits already (see below).

So let me give a little gist of the site. Okay, so the site was founded by Ashley Eckstein who is the voice actress behind Ahsoka Tano on “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” and “Star Wars Rebels.

about_ash

 

In addition to designing Star Wars inspired clothing, she also made other clothing attire for Doctor Who, Marvel, Star Trek and Studio Ghibli. I really like this site because there is finally something wearable to support my geekdom in Star Wars for instance. I mean there has always been Star Wars attire, but none for girls/women. There were always t-shirts (more designed for boys/men), but I’m not really a “t-shirt person”. Sometimes I’ll wear them but not all the time. So it’s nice to go to a site that gives you many options of what kinda wardobe you wanna wear for the day: blouses, t-shirts (of course), dresses, sweaters & cardigans, hoodies & sweatshirts, bottoms, outerwear… The choice is yours in “Her Universe”. I mean for example, the third outfit on the far right, the Star Wars Symbol Cardigan, I basically can wear that to work. Everytime I wear that people mistake the Imperial Empire and Rebel symbols for poka dots once they see my cardigan up close and they end up liking it more because it looks like workwear and it’s Star Wars. It’s very comfortable too..

Anyway, I am not writing this post to boast about my Star Wars wardrobe, but to promote a cause that the Her Universe website is promoting.

Star Wars Princess Leia Self Rescuing Princess

The shirts you see here are made in the late Carrie Fisher’s honor for her advocacy in mental health awareness. The proceeds from this tee will go toward The Thalians (I also wrote an article about them), a non profit organization—once headed by Ms. Fisher’s mother, the late Debbie Reynolds—whose mission is to help the men and women who served our country overcome their mental illness. Definitely, this is a t-shirt I will buy in the future and proudly wear!

If you want more information on the shirt, click on the website below:

Star Wars Princess Leia Self-Rescuing Princess T-Shirt

If you like to know more about the Thalians, click on the website below:

The Thalians