You can get so used to doing something you forget it's #notokay.
Social Media Videos for Lasting Social Impact
It's been a long, long time in getting here, Trinidad and Tobago. But here we are.
There's just so much pain here that I don't even know where to start. We have normalized insensitivity, ignorance, and apathy in our society that it will take the heaviest of tools to uproot what has become so embedded in our collective subconscious.
The idea that it's okay to call someone struggling with depression 'weak' or let them know that they 'should just get over it' or they 'too happy' is part of why we're losing people to that disease.
The idea that it's okay to hit or beat or push or physically abuse, in some other way, your wife or girlfriend is part of why we're losing so many women.
The idea that it's okay to blame abuse victims for the abuse they receive: 'you shoulda know better', 'that's just how some men are', 'what you do to get him vex?', 'you need to calm him down', 'well, you get him vex in the first place', is part of why domestic violence in our country is climbing.
The idea that it's okay to laugh at somebody for taking medication for mental illness or privately scorn them or keep our distance from them, is part of why many people feel ashamed to take meds for their mental illness.
The fact that it's okay to refer to mental institutions as 'madhouse', to hearing voices and having hallucinations as 'mad people thing', to mental illness medication as 'mad people tablets', is part of why when the people we love suffer from a form of mental illness we don't know how to help them.
The fact that it's okay to say about someone who's suicidal that they 'just looking for attention' and refuse to be kinder towards them and less judgmental is part of why suicidal people feel even worse in their lowest moments.
It's #notokay. None of this is okay.
And we don't even have to make big changes to take our country in a different direction. All we have to do is learn, educate ourselves, and then have the courage and compassion to stand up and say, no, this is #notokay. Our silence will only validate these toxic attitudes, that may or may not affect you-- but definitely affect people around you. It's our little attitudes that lead to headline news.
All it takes is for you to reflect on all the pain that you keep seeing around you-- yes, that pain and suffering and loss and crime and violence-- and remember it, remember that this is why you choose to stand up for what is #notokay.
#NotOkay was borne out of the high, and steeply rising, incidences of domestic abuse, sexual assault, mental illness and child abuse in T&T, with the belief that our ignorant attitudes fuel these social ills.
It's an almost impossible undertaking but it's necessary. While we don't know how much good we do by speaking out against things so widespread and commonly believed, we do absolutely no good by choosing not to. We may not be able to save everyone, but we can save someone.
According to Sir Winston Churchill...
Never give in [...] and never yield to the overwhelming might of the enemy.
- Candice Alaska
#NotOkay creates social videos that are tailor-made to be eye-catching on social media.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
- Domestic Abuse
- Sexual harassment