The U.S. Congress designated August 26 as Women’s Equality Day, which honors the 1920 certification of the 19th Amendment that granted women the right to vote. Women suffragists had been informally working toward this goal since the country’s founding and formally since 1848 — spanning the American Civil War and World War I. The increased political influence only serves to highlight the inherent dignity of women, while furthering the idea that the value of women in society is equal to that of men.
WOMEN AND MENTAL HEALTH
Not only do women have voting rights, but they are also entitled to enhance their mental health and seek help when needed just like anybody else. Unfortunately, women face increased risks of depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions as the statistics below illustrate.
- Depression: Women are twice as likely to struggle with depression.
- Anxiety: Women are twice as likely to struggle with panic disorder, generalized anxiety, and specific phobias.
- Post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD): Women are twice as likely to face PTSD following a traumatic event.
- Suicide: Women attempt suicide two to three times more often than men.
- Eating disorders: At least 85 percent of all anorexia and bulimia cases and 65 percent of binge-eating disorder cases affect women.
Pressure from society, work, relationships, and family are just a few of the factors that can increase the risk of women developing mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety. To make matters worse, many women hesitate to seek help – perhaps assuming or believing that their mental-emotional state is not severe enough to require professional support.
EMPOWERING WOMEN TO THRIVE
Women’s Equality Day gives us an opportunity to celebrate the strides made by women and society to uphold the rights of all people regardless of their gender. Women should feel empowered to foster their mental health. By promoting the equality of women, Thrive validates the experiences of women while providing them with a safe space to express their thoughts, process their feelings, and find healing from life’s inevitable struggles.
Regardless of gender, race, background, or beliefs, we embrace the dignity of all individuals as well as our shared humanity. Our support groups allow individuals to find an accepting community of healing while our outpatient care and day treatment programs for eating disorders and perinatal mental health provide targeted care tailored to every individual’s unique needs. Feel free to reach out to us to learn more.