You never know what people are going through! As an African American man, we are taught to hold in a lot of emotions. Our cries equate to being “soft”. Our complaints categorize us as angry! Our passion is mistaken for dogism (yea I made that word up). Because we have so wonderfully swept EVERYTHING under the rug. Some of us (myself included) are dirty with dust that lingers from experiences we have yet to understand. Suffering in silence, and yet we wonder why we do certain things! Triggers and the habits that follow. Many of us cant even articulate the emotions we do have because we have been guided to hide them. Its only WEAK when you ALLOW them to control you. Which in a way we have. Holding stuff in, not expelling true emotion, placing a lid on an already stuffed can, will only lead to spillage later. Many do not have any outlet nor have they sought guidance. The community as a whole has suffered in silence. I know growing up the thought of going to see a therapist was OUT OF THE QUESTION. ” What goes on in my house stays in my house”. Many of our black parents had this mentality. The tradeoff is we grow up holding in stuff, not understanding things and confused on why WE had to experience those things. I struggled for years to understand my biological parent’s addictions! I asked God for understanding. I could not understand how a mother could allow an addiction take her away from her children. Be very careful what you ask for! I too had to go through addiction(s). The apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree! I asked for understanding, and I got it! And while I sought help and continuously strive to maintain my sobriety, many of us just ACCEPT IT. It’s a popular thing now to pop a pill and “turn up”. But the issue is “TURNING DOWN”. Reality and life isn’t a turn-up! Often we seek the “turn up” to “tune out”. I don’t have all of the answers. Anyone who has struggled(s) with addiction knows it’s an ongoing process and every day is a battle. But YOU CAN WIN IT! Don’t suffer in silence. Get over the guilt, shame, and embarrassment (my issue) and seek help! Many of us are so conditioned and used to suffering that we think its normal! It’s NOT! You were wonderfully and divinely made, you are NOT HERE to suffer! Seek Help, Guidance, and clarity.