(ENSPIRE COMMUNITY ) The Secret She Kept Movie We all may have a family member or know someone who has a mental illness and this movie is speaking to you. No one can put themselves in others shoes but what we can do is learn how to support and cope with those who may be dealing with a mental illness. This is definitely a film you want to make sure you tune in to watch. https://youtu.be/Gl5VP9eBL_E ENSPIRE Magazine had the chance to speak with the cast and creative forces behind “The Secret She Kept.” The movie is based on a book written by award-winning author ReShonda Tate Billingsley that touches on mental health awareness in the black community. This interview touched upon starting the conversation on mental health starting with an understanding and acknowledgement of mental illness is and how to treat it. We heard from cast members Kyla Pratt, Gavin Houston, Vanessa Williams, Creative Producer/Screenwriter Rhonda Freeman-Baraka, Author ReShonda Tate Billingsley and VP of Original programming for TV One, Robyn Green-Arrington. They all gave us great insight on their own personal experience with mental health and what they expect viewers to take from this powerful message. TV One has been making an effort to supply viewers with substantial issues that affect the community. This particular issue affects the black community where mental illness is considered a weakness. The entire cast takes this issue very serious. We asked Author ReShonda how she felt the conversation on mental awareness should get started. She mentioned it starts with the family and those close to individuals who are dealing with mental illness. These people are the beacon of support for those who have no forum or who are discouraged about their situation. She hit it right on the head when you think about it. How can we help a community if they have no one to turn to?
“So often, we trivialize that someone is just ‘crazy’ and we don’t recognize that mental illness is real and relevant. I wanted to show not only was this something that deserved our attention, but that we shouldn’t be ashamed to seek help. If our bodies are sick, we get help. I wanted to de-stigmatize the shame that often keeps us from seeking treatment when our minds are sick,” said Billingsley. “I am grateful The Secret She Kept has been turned into a movie. While the book did exceptionally well, the platform TV One provides will hopefully get more people talking about what so many people see as a dirty little secret.”