In the wake of the heartbreaking suicide of Regina King’s son Ian Alexander Jr., her close friend and actress Vivica Fox is shedding light on the importance of noticing the signs that your loved one may be in a dark place.
“I just pray that what we do more than anything else for our sons, for our children … COVID and everything has got everybody in a dark spot, in a dark place. If y’all see any signs of someone being in distress or if somebody reaches out to you that is maybe not having a good day … stop, take a moment, make sure they are okay,” Fox says.
Just a week before his death, Alexander Jr. shared a tweet about social media and the effect it may have been having on his mental health.
“I don’t think Instagram is healthy for me,” one of his tweets read.
In another tweet, Alexander Jr. wrote, “You know that episode of SpongeBob where they go inside his brain and it’s a bunch of mini spongebobs just losing their s—…..yea that one really hits home.”
These tweets shed light on a much deeper conversation that needs to be had: the conversation about the impact social media has on the mental health of the youth, especially during the pandemic when more teens and young adults turned to their phones for a distraction or escape.
So how do you help someone whose mental health may be impacted by social media?
There are many things a person can do to protect their loved ones from the potentially negative effects of social media, experts say.
While there are positive aspects to social media, there’s evidence it can pose risks to a person’s mental health due to issues such as