Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy on Why Leaders Struggle with Mental Health

I have many times talked and written about my struggle with depression and anxiety over the past 40 years. How it affected me, my family and my businesses and we have talked with other people over the last 15 who have had the courage to combat a similar struggle which is all too common among entrepreneurs and small business owners.

On the Small Business Radio Show this week, we remember that when President John F. Kennedy, published his classic book Profiles in Courage, he hoped to inspire “political courage” by telling the stories of brave U.S. senators who changed America. In “Profile in Mental Health Courage”, Former congressman Patrick Kennedy adapts his uncle’s idea to showcase the acts of “mental health courage” that happen in private: what it takes for those living with mental illness and addiction to find care and treat their illnesses, and the risk they take telling their stories in a country without adequate mental health understanding, infrastructure, and care. Patrick Kennedy is one of the leading voices on mental illness while he was in Congress. Soon after the death of his father, Senator Ted Kennedy he left congress to devote himself to mental health Advocacy.

Here is what we discussed:

Why the book is dedicated to “To those still suffering in silence”- why are so many Americans still after all these years, still suffering in silence?

Patrick’s own struggles in 2015 with bipolar disorder and addiction.

Why leaders so often struggle with mental health.

How did your relationship change with people once you disclosed this?

Why families play a critical role in dealing with mental health.

Why do you the frame of courage for people struggling with mental illness?

Why isn’t physical and mental illness seen as medically the same?

When Simone Biles was at the Olympics and said she could not compete because of a mental health situation. In the book Patrick writes “all people wanted to know was why she couldn’t perform the way they wanted her to …”.

Listen to the entire interview with Patrick on The Small Business Radio Show this week.


This article, “Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy on Why Leaders Struggle with Mental Health” was first published on Small Business Trends

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