New York Congressman Ritchie Torres has spoken out about his struggle with depression and the importance of mental health in the wake of U.S.
Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.)’s recent hospitalization for clinical depression. Torres, a Democrat who is the first openly gay Afro-Latino member of Congress, told “GMA3” hosts DeMarco Morgan and Eva Pilgrim on Tuesday that he had “an obligation to tell” his “story in the hopes of breaking the shame and silence, and stigma that too often surrounds the subject of mental health.” Torres views his coming to terms with his mental health issues — while also being open about it — as a form of “public service” to the American people. “We live in a society that historically has shamed people for experiencing mental illness, that has framed mental illness as a failure of character or a failure of willpower.
And I’m here to send a message that mental illness is nothing of which to be ashamed, that there are millions of Americans who struggle with depression and anxiety,” Torres explained.
Even before being elected to Congress, Torres, 34, spoke freely about his past experiences concerning mental health issues and how they affected him.