Health

The Inspiring Reason #WeLoveYouMichael Is Trending on Instagram

Fans of Australian pop band 5 Seconds of Summer took to Instagram to celebrate band member Michael Clifford this week. Clifford opened up about his mental illness issues at a recent concert. Using the hashtag #WeLoveYouMichael, 5 Seconds of Summer followers shared love and support for the young musician.

As ATTN: has noted before, it's important to candidly address mental health because there's still a stigma surrounding it in our culture. A recent survey of people in California reported that nine in 10 respondents who said that they had mental health problems had experienced discrimination because of it. In the same study, respondents said that less than half of people they encountered were "generally caring and sympathetic to people with mental illness."

When famous people like Clifford publicly discuss their mental health challenges—regardless of potential judgment from the masses—it sends the message that mental illness is nothing to be embarrassed about or to hide from.

At a recent show for the group's Rock Out With Your Socks Out tour, which was briefly put on hiatus, Clifford explained to the audience that he'd been seeking professional help while the band was taking time off.

“I was fixing some problems with my mental health," he said. "I just saw a therapist real quick on the break we had."

Soon enough, #WeLoveYouMichael started trending all over the globe, and many came forward to send him light and love during this apparent time of need:

5 Seconds of Summer fans are not the first fans to shower their idols with compassion during tough moments. "Supernatural" star Jared Padalecki, who has publicly discussed his depression battle before and advocated for ending the stigma around mental illness, was pleasantly surprised at Comic-Con last month when thousands honored his bravery in talking about mental health issues. While he was speaking on a panel, fans held up fake candles and shouted "Always keep fighting!"

Always Keep Fighting is Padalecki's campaign geared towards fighting mental illness. His fans were also likely referring to some troubling tweets he posted in May:

This came shortly after he announced he wouldn't be making certain scheduled appearances:

Following the surprise from fans at Comic-Con, Padalecki told E! News in an interview, "I'm holding the candle in my pocket right now, I can't let go of it. At first I didn't know what it is. I thought people were holding up their iPhones or something. And then someone handed me the note explaining it and I found out what was really going on. It took everything in my power not to cry."

He also shared a touching message on Facebook page:

 

A thank you. To anybody and everybody that had ANY part whatsoever in the Always Keep Fighting Hall H tea light event....

Posted by Jared Padalecki on Sunday, July 12, 2015

 

In March, he told Variety that it's important for him to encourage others to keep fighting their battle with mental illness, adding that it should not be cause for shame.

"I say constantly that there’s no shame in dealing with these things," he said. "There's no shame in having to fight every day, but fighting every day, and presumably, if you're still alive to hear these words or read this interview, then you are winning your war. You're here."

If you or someone close to you needs emotional help, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1 (800) 273-8255.