Emily Torchiana • TEDxCharleston 2017
Let's give face to mental illness
Quite often those suffering from mental illness are completely indistinguishable from everyone else, at least from the outside. Although the illness is often invisible, Emily Torchiana says, it is no less debilitating and difficult to share with even one’s closest friends and family. The term mental health has a negative stigma attached to it and it is looked down upon in our society to discuss the parts of us where the struggle resides. Emily Torchiana, a brave and insightful former College of Charleston student, opens up about her own behind closed doors battles with mental illness while in high school and how she now works to encourage others to step forward and put a face on mental illness. She speaks across the country at schools and conferences about her experience with severe cyberbullying in high school, leading to a suicide attempt, hospitalization, and diagnosis of PTSD, depression, and social anxiety. Emily started a non-profit organization while in college that eases the extremely difficult process of bringing invisible illnesses into the light and giving others permission to see the strength in their struggle.