ANXIETY – BY TYLER WEAVER

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Tyler in our reading of <ph><f>reaking at Dixon Place

I don’t understand people who can sleep at night. I wish I knew their secret. While they are blissfully unconscious I’m staring at my ceiling wondering why I made that stupid joke earlier.

Was I being a dick? Did I forget to return that email? Did she catch me staring at her chest? (Probably)

I used to do this most nights until I sought help.

What powers would Kirby get if he swallowed me?

Picture1Anxiety.

It’s something I’ve been struggling with for years. Working on this production has made me think a lot about mental illness and my own personal experiences with it.

Several members of my family have struggled with anxiety or depression as well as many of my friends. It always used to surprise me how prevalent these disorders are and just how devastating they can be to an individual or their family. I’ve known two friends who have committed suicide in the last year alone.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health in 2015, there were an estimated 43.4 million adults aged 18 or older in the United States with AMI (Any Mental Illness). Many characters in JERK are forced to confront some form of mental illness and it reminds me that there is always help available.

Acknowledging that there may be something wrong can be very difficult and asking for help can be even more so. Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. If you or someone you care about needs help or even if you just want to educate yourself there are numerous discreet organizations you can contact. You can visit MentalHealth.gov for more information as well as the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline if you are in distress. (1-800-273-8255).

JERK is opening this week. Seating is very limited, so plan your trip to the show today!

Tyler Weaver (Men) is extremely excited to be able to work with Critical Point Theatre again. A 2013 graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University, his recent work includes staged readings of both (ph)(f)reaking and JERK: Or, The Stimulation of Self as well as multiple appearances on episodes of The Grayscale and The Creedance Clearwater Revival Hour, also produced by CPT.

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