Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels

Self love February and you

  • Black communities are less likely to seek help for mental health conditions despite being disproportionately affected.
  • Reports suggest healthcare providers need more training and support to deliver culturally sensitive care. (1)
  • February is a time of love between two and the best time to love, care and embrace all of you.

With red roses, hearts and ballons filling the shelves and on-line stores enticing buyers to get all loved up, its a time to do you. The same intent made for treating loved ones to a wonderful experience, can be made for you. Valentine’s day is a chance to reflect on self love practices and to be mindful about the care we give to self.

Black communities are said to be less likely to seek help for mental health conditions despite being disproportionately affected. Whilst there are calls for reforms to the Mental Health Act (2), there is a need perhaps for black communities to practice self care and love more so than any other group.

“Racism in service delivery, either directly or through the ethnocentrism of services which are based on the needs of the majority, is often invoked as the explanation for inequalities”. (3)

If that service delivery team is a reflection of you, would you be more inclined to seek help for your mental wellness journey? What if that reflection right now is you?  After all isn’t the way you love your nearest and dearest in-part the way we begin to love our self? So there isn’t a multitude of spaces and places where you can go to practice self-love with your friends that reflects you and your culture (yet!).  But there IS you.  Self-love the way you do when your loved ones are not feeling 100%, or when your nan falls ill and you bring her flowers, or when your toddler falls and hurts his knee. That love, that care, that unconditional knee jerk reaction to help them feel loved…That’s the self-love February we want you to have.  Every month of the year.  Now it’s over to you! #BeWell

References (1) Perceived barriers to accessing mental health services among black and minority ethnic (BME) communities: a qualitative study in Southeast England

(2) Mental Health Act ‘needs major reform’ as black patients four times as likely as whites to be sectioned.

(3) Naidoo and Wills (2016) Foundations for Health Promotion. 4th edn. London: Elsevier