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Alyssa Anderson, Fargo, Published August 26 2013

Letter: Johnson’s mental illness article was spot-on

Kudos galore to columnist Ryan Johnson for his Aug. 2 article explaining the stigma, heartache and often misperceived outlook on celebrities and everyday people with addictions and mental illness. It is the best article I have read in The Forum about mental illness in a long time, and it explained it extremely well. He is a wonderful addition to The Forum.

As a person with depression and anxiety disorder, I have gone through many years of turmoil and feel that even though the mental health system obviously has come a long way since the ’60s and ’70s, it still has a long way to go, just as society has a long way to go with understanding. People need to educate themselves on mental health and decrease the stigma.

Mentally ill people are not insane, crazy or go around shooting people (as some in the NRA suggest). We are all crying out for help – all of us. From depression to schizophrenia to addiction, there is a lot of misunderstanding.

Johnson’s article made the road to understanding a little bit closer. Thank you for such a wonderful article once again, and I look forward to reading more from him.