Men of mental health Monday: Greg Washington. Conquering anxiety and being a voice for mental health in the church.

Monday, July 9th

Greg Washington is a board member for Mental Health America of Wisconsin, and pastor at Immanuel church in Milwaukee.  In this week's episode of MENtal Health Monday, we talk with Greg about dealing with his anxiety personally, the church's view on mental health, and why the mental health stigma is so strong amongst African American men.  Greg can be reached at  

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Mental health Monday as an information on podcasts and should not be used to replace the specialized training and professional judgment of healthcare or mental health care professional until Monday can't be a responsible for the use of the information provided please always consult a trained mental health professional before making any decision regarding treatment of yourself or others self help information and podcasts and information on the Internet is useful but it's not always a substitute for professional assistance unless otherwise noted guests of mental Monday or not doctors are licensed and anyway our hopes to make the connection with you and be more open and honest about everyone's mental health. Into the podcast. Then he came back and I welcome to another edition of mental health Monday the podcasts were talking with men about mental health. I'm rigs from rigs and Alley morning's of one of three point seven kiss ass and I'm last week we talked to doctor Bradley Freeman from Rogers behavioral health about anxiety and he has a center for anxiety disorders we kind of broke down. The mental illness itself anxiety now what's it like actually living with anxiety but that's where we're gonna talk to my guest about this week Craig Washington Greg is on the board for mental health America Wisconsin. He's also a pass. Pastor for his own church Emmanuel church in downtown Milwaukee and he also struggles with anxiety so I think here. Who better to talk to you than somebody that actually took anxiety ahead on. My wife would say you'd go out to a speaking engagement whenever and then you come home. Initially we thought I'm just tired this is how would notice that there are times you be in the dark on the floor for like three days my anxiety was like through the route he got treatment he's in recovery he's doing great he's got a very positive attitude. We're gonna hear his story today for mental health Monday. I mentioned Greg is a board member for mental health America Wisconsin mental health America recognizes July as a minority mental health month. The mental illness doesn't discriminate age gender in com. Especially race if anybody can get anxiety depression bipolar disorder eating disorders all of that can affect anybody no matter who you are. Man or woman men are already batted talking about their feelings and mental health. Black men are even worse there's a lot of stick was behind it there's also issues of getting help in a minority elected insurance coverage there's language barrier sometimes even cultural beliefs but the thing is that mental health. It's something that everybody needs to deal with every day it's no different than a heart condition it's no different than a sprained ankle it's no different than taking thyroid medication that's why every week I have a mental health Monday podcast where we talk openly about mental health select also wanted to talk to our guests this week. Greg Washington about how African American men are about dealing with their mental health cell let's bring into the shell this winter Greg Washington now Europe board member for mental health America of Wisconsin. How did this relationship come to be how does he get in touch with them well a funny story. Calm before I had my own church I was on staff and a large church. Parking on simply got in Milwaukee. And we did something wrong mental health month. And part of that was you know passage know as a pastor as a leader. On personal influence if you will I want to share my story you know because I. I just leave Dei you know it there's a lot of people and they detective or may feel like something's a little bit off. But having someone who looks like didn't I'm sure their story. Would be. You know awesome so where I did was I just gathered to practice their lead to ruled mental health in Wisconsin hand reached out a couple of organizations that hey here's what we're doing. I'm gonna share my story on a platform and Sunday. Would you want to be OK we've been coming to our church being an atrium. Just this happens for people protesting you know right after they hear talking after it's on their mind. Let's let him rest are going out the door. With resource is within our city. Mom and the only challenge we had was the organization's. Ran out of material. On the jets have a yes everybody is looking for help us get everybody's looking for help me and I think it has helped. You know hearing my story after a pastor or spiritual leader somebody. And influence yeah how do you feel battle with this absolutely so this in equipment children what is your story. Yeah political point. Long. Now that I've. He's getting treatment and and you know learn part of the environmental it's honestly something not struggle with my entire life but he didn't really come to a head until. I would say five years ago from when I got married you know I think when she married you can no longer high. Them anymore he gets out there all the time asking questions exactly how you feel and you know what I'm not doing so again bright and so what would happen is my wife was saying you go out to a speaking engagement or whatever. And then I come home. Initially we thought I was just tired this is I would notice that there will be times you've been in the dark on the floor for like three days. And anxiety was like through the roof and there's this is 1 morning and my clearly she asked like. What's wrong indeed just out of nowhere just had this crazy outburst it was you know now I know is heavily driven by anxiety. Com you know I'm looking around like what the heck did I just goose she's looking might do what he's doing and and that was the at the time that sparking yet something is off soften their man. Home sought out some treatment on at that time in my life are relaxed like cows that are dark place you on ten. Like suicide was prevalent wasn't really dad didn't have a plain black you know it when you get to that point. Dean did sounds a lot better than being alive and the pain get rid of it do you know and I'm Santana like you know not waking up would be a great thing. So I went home and I'm thinking for myself and my K I'm just going into the hospital this. Get checked out to gonna give me an appeal and I'm on the way you know nicely you know do those. A gentleman coming down to the ER and has escorted me out to mental health unit and so I found myself there four weeks. I joke all the time since the craziest best week of online store I imagine you and the such a stigma with it no I first got there. You know I just freaking out so I'm thinking it's like prison you know. I can't leave for a TV you know any you know CV as I care right homeless looking around and I'm like you know what I'm just gonna do my times I feel home. Right. In funny story well you know I'll make you funny thing is you know you don't wanna take yourself too seriously on. Was there's my neighbor next to me you know just just really going off on stats into this. You know could it is kind of aggravating our checking our notes on so he just goes dessert. You know nicely you know do they get his due to shot. You know when he wakes up like two days later he's like massive that it didn't know and didn't sleep usually Martier or eight. So from there and I'm I'm like you know what how go to every treatment program I'll take the coloring book outputs Austria whatever it is but clueless funny. Because in those sessions. You know as we're going around the room home there were. Professionals in their remember teachers they were married people with families and children business owners. Index Canadian life and how there are a lot of people. Then do you struggle. With this move home and then often times you know. Don't detect it till the backing up until something. Touch to plug on its in its two man so hard to control absolutely. And he said it's not too late at that point obviously if you there at that point it's still not to lay still insulate. But film when they get too far gone so where did you reach down to find that strange because it's hard for a lot of people especially men. Yes the black men sometimes it can to swallow their pride yeah insane I need help them not right. Well ourselves timer into is like for me it was nearing its you know looking in my life. Sing god forbid something happened to me and how that would affect her to give kids no kids yet yes so I'm just looking at her. And knowing that this is somebody who loves and he really cares for me. Phone that was my my only inclination to finance at that point he not taken a career I think and finances if they can do what. I'm over you and your pain you caused pain for so many of the passing and people think about that and analyze. And has their pains dominate created this hole in the senate and me and my family who lost her uncle the suicide itself. All of a sudden the whole family has this now collaborative pain and it splits people apart back and forth and it just doesn't number on a family and it does yeah. You mentioned earlier than those he sent me on the stigma and the African American community in why do you think that exists. Dude it's just arrives within history break. I describe this two ways you know sometimes history sometimes it's just genetic pray that sometimes it's trauma. You know anything date back to slavery you know just some of the conditions that many African Americans experienced and winner. During those times but does come Montrae if you will in the suit and a symbol or the status they took to get through it was strength right. He just keep going he just keep pushing. He you know Dolan sees a way. Believe Steve still within our African American communities you know now we're strong racing many women raising kids by themselves but she's strong you know. In in all actuality it's my teaching people how to. He'll now is just helping them cope you know. I some of and so was I think it's their strength and asking for help home guy. It's like asking a question do you have questions and is no wrong reason and help. Now and you know sometimes heartbreak who were rocky to report him and you need some of the time too many experienced something in your childhood. You know that is abnormal there you've you've you've you need some might talk to her process the split right because often times left our own nicest man. And it's crazy basic human treatment now is that after talking to somebody is at a medication yeah. How is your visible absolute dollars and Vietnam and now I think we've seen. My psychologist can every moment. It's a part of my life now on you know. The anxiety. Is here but it doesn't overrule me how I describe it is. This gives me the opportunity to start at zero balance right instead of a negative balance I can't stress happens whenever. But I'm through understanding you I'm learning how to deposit kind of thing yes let's part of everyday life and got healthier. Since last year I lost thirty pounds mono just understood like are so. I need an outlet it now I need to be working out your release is healthy endorphins and my body so. A lot of people that mental health issues veterans especially the use physical fitness is well and his dad I did the same thing that's my therapy in the gym in tune everything out put on headphones. Yeah I love it. You talked about you have a church of your own yes what is that church again. In an actual church Milwaukee took and you and what does the church is stances on mental health and mental illness and even suicide because that was a big. Question of contention in my family we were very Catholic family that Raines who raised that way. And Suzanne and so it was a sin and was recently killed in some it's at their own life yeah. They were one way ticket to hell and so was dunes where I don't and I don't necessarily agree with that but I am curious as what you're and I as a pastor. One thing that I think a couple things I think the we only looked like any guy. As a fixer if it's something tangible if it's just. You know any money any new ground money in the American job or you know my mom has cancer are broken leg break. And I think we've limits his capacity. Because he also cares about the things we can't see him he cares about the broken hearts in the troubled minds and depression and the anxiety that people. People experience this you know and I've been in settings where you know I've heard people say we just you know having the faith. And they just limited today and then are you need to pray more heat right. But if there's literally a mental disorder you know this person there's eggs there experiencing a block. It's one thing I've tried to do things on my church in the church's largest we've got to we have still would have to be realistic and then rent. They say hey somebody comes in me they have broken arm. I'm not gonna say aiming you're not playing now. You know Brett you know what do you root for extreme but also go to BR this same women that's you know when I'm gonna pray for you. But it's okay to see impact site psychologist and it's OK to see a psychiatrist. And you know I'm so totally honest. You know I knew I would not know the fate of of someone. Because you know my beliefs is like God's grace is likes. The multitude of it is incomprehensible. Then and what someone may even say in that final breath you know dancing to. It could change being split. One thing I have tried to do is make it normal. In our church and I think you know me sharing my story. Has health yeah a lot of so I'm sure how many people into future coming first and then some weeks I actually there was never heard of somebody starting a church that's additives Aslan praising him. So started. Few years back and I took over he eight months ago and so now we're around flexibly to around eighty people. About it a lot of it's really. What do you call melting pot of everybody else in maybe not that everything from. Individuals from. The Milwaukee who market basketball player to a lawyer an architect and sure Sonia what's different from like Catholic Church rooms in church or even like a cynic more a Buddhist temple. Yet you were church. And races which do have by viewers while person of the melting pot and religions as well enough to. Religions. But you know we doing various payment Jesus Jesus is the way. And I think a lot of people. Knew what when it comes to things such as the nominations it's all predicated on interpretation. Right way I believe this and I believe that some from that. Denominations reform now when we really try to make a price the main thing crisis world. And how do you go to somebody that doesn't have a strong. Religious belief let people are very I don't think it's not gonna help me at all it's not and this guy and not train anybody how do you reach out and as people in there. There is no god and people that are still lost how do you reach those people yeah a couple ways you don't want one thing I've I've noticed an activist just from personal experience. Anyone who has an issue or problem is always open to a solution human brain. But it's the method in which they have to go to get the solution. So I know a lot of people. On who had bad experiences with faith with religion for someone my own and it's ten to four different. And so it's sometimes not even the fact I don't believe. This is a higher power there is a guy. You know this this this situation. Has impacted me to report funny funny you say this on literally in the barbershop this morning. Am I barbers with this freshmen class freshman so fresh from what you wanna go to a chick. I in the EU he says he's you know he's an ex felons and he's saying you know I think today the discussion started that he found out how much faster. He and he was saying dad you know what it meant I had some guys who pain and he preached violence and prison. And they do say some things management felt like there was judging these images really turned the job. So so a lot of what I've experienced man who is. Is this not. Always an essence that people don't believe there is a guy who's had a bad experience with religion in general I have experience which religion you know. And let you know so I just live on the essence of the gospel event. Should affect your lifestyle right decision. Makes you. Kind to everybody right here dissolve divisions and I was very first month and a lot of positive there's a lot of negative because its bottom line lot of positive and Islam something else. Thanks again. Thank you so much for coming on and ammunition shared his story I think people reach out to you yeah well I'm definitely my email addresses the PG. Emanuel thanks I Indians paid in you can help. Including. I'm Julie and everything in its description as well something so much for coming on absolutely needed voice for mental health especially African American. And with the man yeah appreciate. Yes black people it's okay to get helped save her and any help. Africa black white anybody can absolutely nice that she's electricity grain. Such a positive guy. Yeah I felt as positive energy would locked in their rooms look Panama and now to talk to me again in the future Greg Washington for mental health Monday next week we're talking did too. Noon gentleman who started to sever web sites and one is manned therapy dog or the other is heads up guys dot org these are both mental health web sites. Names and demands. And specifically meant. The man therapy website. Actually has a spokesperson to fix their fiscal doctor rich mahogany from potato all about it next week for brand new episode of mental health Monday. As a mention on every podcast if you feel like you are in crisis he needs someone to talk to there's always someone listening. 180273. Talked as the national suicide prevention lifeline for you can text hello to 741741. Safe doesn't feel good to talk about your feelings get that out in the open. I'm rigs thanks again for checking out mental health Monday if you have ideas and suggestions for future topics please drop me a line my website is it rigs radio dot him eat and enjoy the rest of your date your afternoon your morning your shower whatever you do when you work out I'll talk to you next week in the meantime. Make your life decisions.