Therapists Are Using Hip Hop as a Tool For Healing

NEW YORK, NY – JANUARY 27: The Recording Academy and MusiCares President/CEO Neil Portnow (L) presents the President’s Merit Award to honoree Jay-Z onstage at the Clive Davis and Recording Academy Pre-GRAMMY Gala and GRAMMY Salute to Industry Icons Honoring Jay-Z on January 27, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for NARAS)

The artwork of hip-hop allows for a certain level of disclosure. One that embodies the honesty and core pain of a lot of its artists. Living with a mental health issue is no laughing matter. Our artists aren’t an exclusive club and are just affected as us common folk. Some artists will put it in front of your face and spell it out for you. Such as Kanye West’s 2007 song “Clique” where he clearly was going through a bout of depression and had suicidal ideations.

“Went through, deep depression when my mama passed, suicide, what kinda talk is that” –a mental disorder

Other times the signs aren’t that clear and could resemble a case of misfortune or general sadness. These type of signs go unnoticed and unaddressed which leads to more discomfort the affected and community that surrounds them. Rapper Kendrick Lamar was affected deeply by the killings of three his close friends affected him. The death itself had an impact, but also the survivor’s guilt that comes with being alive to tell the story itself. His interview with Rob Markman from MTV news speaks to this inner pain.

Three of my homeboys [one] summertime was murdered, close ones too, not just somebody that I hear about. These [are] people I grew up with. It all, psychologically, it messes your brain up. You live in this life, you know what I’m saying, but you still have to face realities of this. I gotta get back off that tour bus and go to these funerals”

If you haven’t been checking closely lately, rappers are