Mental Health

Stephen ‘tWitch’ Boss’ Death by Suicide and How Hollywood is Positively Addressing Mental Health

Stephen “tWitch” Boss’s suicide came as a shock to everyone. How could such an outwardly joyful celebrity struggle so much internally? 

While we don’t know the details of what caused tWitch to end his life at 40, it’s a sobering reminder that we don’t really know what is going on inside someone’s mind. Men, particularly black men are often brought up to believe that sharing their negative emotions is a sign of weakness.

There can also be fear around seeking professional help. It can feel too embarrassing to share intimate thoughts. People can worry that someone they know may see them going into the therapist’s office, (especially a concern for those living in a smaller community), or if what they say will remain confidential. Stigma and shame can prevent someone from seeking professional help. This is why it’s important to talk about and portray mental health issues in a healthier way.

Hollywood is trying to improve their representation of mental health issues on screen and help others struggling in the process. A mental health media guide has been created for best practices in mental health storytelling. This has been needed, as in the past, we have seen the villainization of those with mental health conditions, such as in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 thriller “Psycho”.

The guide aims to help the industry to more accurately portray mental health challenges, dismantle stigma and barriers to seeking help, show audiences what support looks like and change the narrative on mental health.

The mental health media guide also aims to expand positive mental health representation. Currently, 20% of the population is dealing with a mental health condition, but less than 7% of scripted TV and less than 2% of films address mental health issues.

If you have concerns about your or someone else’s mental health, please contact a medical professional or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988 (in USA) for a free, confidential conversation.

Joe Faulkner

Journalist, health and life coach. My world exclusives have been featured in TMZ, Entertainment Tonight, CNN & more. As a former social welfare worker, I use a combination of counselling, health and life coaching skills, to help artists & others to live a good life. (See available programs on this website). As a journalist, I write stories to positively impact the reader, and aim to shine a spotlight on mental health, and have empathy through my personal mental health experiences. Check out the Mental Health resources section of his website.
Back to top button