Former NBA player teaches students at Valley Stream Central HS how to combat mental health issues

A former NBA player was at Valley Stream Central High School to talk about mental health issues.

News 12 Staff

May 20, 2022, 9:58 PM

Updated 696 days ago

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A former NBA player was at Valley Stream Central High School to talk about mental health issues.
Michael Sweetney, who struggled with own mental health, came to the school Friday and said he wishes there was an event to discuss mental health when he was younger.
"Back then, I was one of those people who felt that I was different," Sweetney says. "I felt like I was stranger, I felt like something, like what is wrong with me and not realizing that this is something common."
According to findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the issue is very common among high schoolers.
The CDC's research found that 2 out of 5 high school students felt sadness or hopelessness that caused them to stop doing things they enjoy, and about 1 in 5 seriously considered suicide
The pandemic has also had an impact on students' mental well-being.
"A lot of people I find in my own life, and just observing, have been feeling really lost in how to get back into the flow and be mentally OK," says Natalia Ruiz, a junior at the high school.
Sweetney will also be talking to parents about his mental health struggles to educate them on how they can help their children in their time of need.


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