PORTLAND, Maine — Robyn Cruze and her husband Tim Harrington packed up their lives in Colorado, renovated a bus, and traveled the country with their two daughters - stopping along the way to have conversations about mental illness - and breaking down the stigma.
They hosted intimate events in towns and cities along the way; while posting photos and videos of hope and of their journey to social media.
"Education and awareness isn't really our challenge, there's lots of that out there and there are lots of people doing stuff," says Harrington. "Our goal is to get people to take action within themselves, within their families, within their communities, within their states and within their country; and those actions that we can take are things that I do, which is: changing the language. It's really important to change our words; words matter and we emphasize that a lot."
Harrington has been working in behavioral health for 17 years; while Cruze openly talks about her own struggles with anxiety. Together, they wanted to do a year of service with their young daughters, to show them and those around them that the more open our dialogue is about mental health, the easier it is to get help.
"The reality is 16% of our high schoolers in the United States have thought about suicide; 13% of them have actually considered a plan for it... and so my children are 11 1/2 and 13, so what am I doing? What am I doing about my own stigma?" asks Cruze.
If you'd like to follow along their journey and join in on some of the now-online conversations, follow @widewonder.life on Instagram and Facebook.
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