Mental Illness: What I Wish I Knew

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What I Wish I Knew About Mental Illness

Each year, millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental health condition. However, mental illness affects everyone directly or indirectly through family, friends or coworkers. Mental health conditions are important to discuss. The videos below feature real people sharing their lived experience with some of the symptoms and conditions. Watch and share the videos below.

Krishna Louis: What I wish people knew about anxiety

Andrea Landry: What I wish people knew about bipolar disorder

Andrea Landry: What I wish people knew about bipolar disorderAndrea Landry: What I wish people knew about bipolar disorder

Ashlynn McNeeley: What I wish people knew about Borderline Personality Disorder


NAMI features special blog topics about mental illness. Visit the NAMI Blog at and look for posts on social media.

Additional Resources

Information, resources and graphics to support Mental Illness Awareness can be downloaded here. Additional stats, infographics and resources can also be found on our Mental Health by the Numbers web page.

Fast Facts

Please use these facts and others, including the infographics at, to encourage discussions about mental health through social media or other forms of outreach.

1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year

1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year

1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year

Mental illness affects:

  • 44% of LGB adults
  • 32% Mixed/Multiracial adults
  • 22% of White adults
  • 19% of American Indian or Alaska Native
  • 18% of Latinx adults
  • 17% of Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander adults
  • 17% of Black adults
  • 14% of Asian adults

Annual prevalence among U.S. adults, by condition:

  • Anxiety Disorders: 19.1% (estimated 48 million people)
  • Major Depressive Episode: 7.8% (19.4 million people)
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: 3.6% (estimated 9 million people)
  • Bipolar Disorder: 2.8% (estimated 7 million people)
  • Borderline Personality Disorder: 1.4% (estimated 3.5 million people)
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: 1.2% (estimated 3 million people)
  • Schizophrenia: <1% (estimated 1.5 million people)
Source: NAMI,