Everybody Handles Their Mental Health Differently But Talking About It Reduces the Stigma for Everyday People and Celebs

Taylor Rooks dedication to the topic of mental health, continues to inspire others to share their challenges. As we honor mental health awareness beyond the month of May, it’s important to recognize the individuals who continue to make significant strides as mental health advocates.

At 31, Rooks stands out in the male-dominated industry of sports journalism using her ability to spark genuine conversations. Based out of New York City, Rooks is quickly becoming a trusted voice amongst athletes and their fans for a new generation.

Actor Da’Vinchi, known for his role on Starz’s hit show BMF, was open to discussing what he discovered on his mental health path, sharing the revelations in a recent interview, “I think everyone goes through some form of mental health issue or problem. If you’re human, you have dealt with some trauma, something that affected your mental health.”

Da’Vinchi’s reflections illuminate mental health struggles and the importance of breaking the stigma, especially in black and brown communities. He wants to normalize mental health care and says, “My people are struggling, and we think this is, ‘Oh, I’m slow. I’m crazy.’ But it’s about taking steps to prevent yourself from becoming the things you don’t want to be.”

His courage to take accountability for his mental health is meant to show others they can heal and the importance of finding a supportive environment. Da’Vinchi added, “Mental health is like physical health… it’s just taking care of your body so you can perform at the most optimal level mentally.”

In a recent conversation with EBONY, Rooks spoke about amplifying the voices of both male and female athletes by confronting stereotypes, and creating a culture of understanding in combination  with emotional support.

“I want to be the person that you go to when you have something to say. It’s important for athletes to feel understood” she says.

Rooks mission to develop mentally safe spaces for athletes has been a long journey. She began her career with the Big Ten Network and now reports for Amazon Prime’s Thursday Night Football- elevating her passion for sports. Her interviews are not just about game highlights, they go deeper and uncover the human experiences of athletes on and off the field and courts.

In her recent collaboration with NCAA, Rooks explores the mental health challenges faced by student-athletes with Arizona State basketball coach, Bobby Hurley at the 2024 Men’s Final Four. Additionally, Rooks’ YouTube podcast, “LG Transparent Conversations,” serves as another platform where she brings experts and athletes together to discuss the pressures of competition and the importance of acknowledging mental health.

“There is such a focus on making athletes feel like champions. It’s important to know that people care about who they are as human beings and what they’re going through,” she emphasized.

Each of Rooks interviews prove the evolving attitudes towards adopting healthy mental health practices in sports.

By sharing the stories of athletes and other public figures advocating for greater resources, Rooks encourages a future where mental health is given equal importance.

Updated: May 31, 2024 — 9:02 pm