Our LA show produced by The TLC Foundation, is January 22, 2017 - only 10 days away! Do you have your tickets yet? We are excited to introduce you to cast member Richard Brea!
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a writer and mental health advocate living in Los Angeles, California. I am originally from Massachusetts but moved to LA five and a half years ago to pursue my dreams of becoming a writer. In my free time I like to read, write, play videogames, and go to the movies with my friends. I am a firm believer in equality and strive to empower the mental health community by openly sharing my story.
How has mental illness affected your life?
Mental illness has affected my life in numerous ways. It has shown me to accept people for what they are; beautiful human beings. Mental illness has allowed me to see the world in a new light. Due to my mental illness I have learned to appreciate the small things and never be too hard on myself. I have also learned that my mental illness doesn’t define me and I am more compassionate towards others dealing with the same battle as myself.
Although during my teenage years mental illness affected me in a negative way, it has definitely affected me for the better during my adulthood. I look at living with a mental illness as a blessing in disguise because it has led me to my passion of being a mental health advocate.
Why did you want to be a part of This Is My Brave?
I wanted to be a part of This Is My Brave because I admire what the organization has done for the mental health community. I also wanted to be a part of This Is My Brave because public speaking and sharing my story with the public is something I have been wanting to do for the longest time. Lastly, I wanted to be a part of This Is My Brave because it was one of my goals to get involved with them ever since I came across the organization earlier this year when I did a guest blog post for their website.
What inspires you to stay mentally healthy?
A lot of things inspire me to stay mentally healthy. First and foremost, my family (especially my nieces and nephews) is a main reason for me staying healthy and happy. I want to be a source of inspiration for my nieces and nephews. I want them to know that no matter what life hands them, there’s always a rainbow at the end of the storm. Living a happy and peaceful life is also a reason for me to stay mentally healthy. I want to always be happy with my life and make sure I love and appreciate myself no matter what I go through.
What do you hope the audience takes away from the show?
I hope the audience takes a lot from this show. I hope they can get help for themselves if they are dealing with a mental illness but are too ashamed to get treatment. I hope they view each cast member as a fellow brother or sister and not as someone with depression, bipolar disorder, or anxiety. I hope the audience truly soaks in every word from each song, poem, and story. I want the audience to leave inspired and full of hope. Lastly, I hope the audience remembers that at the end of the day we are all truly the same regardless of whether we are black, white, gay, straight, Christian, Atheist, or living with Bipolar Disorder or any other illness.