Kyla Pratt on What We're Wrong About Celebrities and Mental Health

Kyla Pratt on What We’re Wrong About Celebrities and Mental Health

You probably know Kyla Pratt for her roles in “The Proud Family” and “Dr. Dolittle” or more recently “Call Me Kat”. But these days, the 36-year-old Los Angeles native is raising her voice in other areas like mental health. His main priority? Getting people to recognize that celebrities are human beings and that their mental health matters too.

Growing up, Pratt escaped the horrors of childhood stardom and relied on her family to keep her grounded. But as she got older, she realized the need to establish a more intentional relationship with mental health and well-being. The journey she is on now began shortly after giving birth to her two daughters, Lyric and Liyah.

“No one can tell you how to get out of your own darkness. You just have to know it’s temporary and changing and remember that one day it’s going to be.”

“I feel like the first time I really started to question myself was when I started having kids,” Pratt told POPSUGAR. “It was more because I was afraid of this huge responsibility that I now had to take care of someone and that everything I did would affect them in their life. I just started to overthink it.”

Pratt admits becoming a mother took her sanity “a bit sideways” at first, but ultimately the experience put a lot of things into perspective for her. Understanding where she was on her mental health journey and where she wanted to be helped her realize what kind of role model she wanted to be for her children. “As a parent, I have to be mentally together so they see someone who is together and know it’s OK to have each other. [dark] times but see someone who’s going to pull it off,” the actor shares.

Pratt’s relationship with mental health has been evolving for years. She describes life after her five seasons on “One on One” (2001-2006), when she was just 19, as a “strange time.” “I’ve been working all my life, and all of a sudden when that show ended, I got a little break,” she says. “I kind of kissed [it] first. But after about a year or two, I was like, “Okay. “”

Pratt realized then that his next role wouldn’t always come knocking on his door – and it gave him a framework to think about his career. “You have to come prepared with that thick skin of not always being chosen,” she explains. “And that’s good because what’s meant for you is meant for you. Every circumstance is different in this industry…You literally have to talk to each other about everything and remember that everything is temporary.”

This philosophy, however, goes far beyond a simple career in Hollywood. “Any emotion you feel or anything you go through is temporary,” Pratt reminds us. “Things are going to change…Never get stuck thinking it’s never going to change, that’s how it is. Because mentally you’re going to mature. You’re going to learn so many different things that you’ll be able to pull yourself out of it. anything.”

She continues, “As long as you know that, that’s all you can really get out of anyone saying anything because no one can tell you how to come out of your own darkness. You just have to know it’s temporary. and let it change and remind yourself that one day that’s what it’s going to be.”

One thing Pratt wants to clarify about celebrities like her is the misconception that they don’t experience mental health issues — the misconception that “we’re not human.”

“People see someone acting a certain way and doing a certain thing, and that’s how they expect them to be as a person,” she says. For Pratt, for example, she didn’t realize she had a “cookie cutter image” until she started dating her partner, Danny Kirkpatrick. “Everybody was like, ‘Who’s that guy with all those tattoos coming over and making fun of our little Disney princess?'” Pratt recalled. “I’ve never been like [that] . . . [But] people can only see what you show them.”

“Understand that the issues you’re going through and the thoughts that go through your head, we all have those thoughts and issues and problems.”

In particular, says Pratt, it’s frustrating to see people making assumptions about stars based on what they see on social media. She thinks this disillusionment is why there’s a divide between celebrities and the “average person” when it comes to mental health. “A lot of people who don’t live their lives in public, who go through similar situations, don’t have to face the scrutiny,” she explains.

Pratt notes that some celebrities have an “automatic filter” when it comes to mental health. “It’s like on Instagram when you have a filter on someone’s body and you go on and start comparing yourself to all the different bodies you see… Sometimes when you see someone in the industry that lives its life a certain way, it’s changed because they don’t want to share everything they’re going through and going through because it’s hard,” she explains.

Understanding that her celebrity status didn’t stop her from addressing issues like mental health is what set Pratt on the path to becoming an advocate for other young women, teens and children – a role she’s very proud of. . people who…might look at me and think I’ve got it all figured out and everything is perfect…No, I’m a human like you,” she said. from everyone. Understand that the issues you are going through and the thoughts that are going through your head, we all have these thoughts and issues and problems. We all just have to find different ways to work through them.”

“I’m a work in progress, and I don’t have to ask people, please.”

Something else Pratt is learning about herself? “When to be Captain Save Someone and when not to be.” It’s about finding “the balance between supporting someone and helping others, but not at the expense of my mental health,” she says. “And also remembering that it’s okay to say ‘no’…I’m literally at a point in my life where ‘no’ doesn’t make me feel guilty at all.”

And just as Pratt’s relationship with mental health evolved when she had children, she was also motivated to have more open discussions with her daughters about it. “My kids and I talk about mental health all the time,” she says. “We talk about meditation, yoga, stretching, fitness, working out and what it can do for how you feel. We talk about the foods you eat, the things you say to yourself, so many different things that I feel a lot of parents don’t realize what their kids are going through.”

Pratt knows she is a work in progress. She hopes others will understand this for themselves as well, and then we can all begin to dismantle the myth that not everyone needs to prioritize their mental health.

“When everyone realizes this and agrees with it, I think the world would be a better place instead of thinking that everyone is perfect,” she says. “I’m a work in progress, and I don’t need to be liked by people. I don’t need to be liked by everyone. I’m literally the person who is like that, I’m not maybe not your cup of tea, but I’m someone’s tequila.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health issues, the National Alliance on Mental Illness has resources available to you, including a helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6424 ). You can also dial 988, the new national mental health crisis helpline.

Image source: Ben Cope

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