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What do doctors, attorneys, and CEOs have in common? No, this isn’t a joke… These are all occupations that have the highest rates of stress and depression among all occupations. Attorneys across the U.S. have begun to realize how prevalent the problem is.

Unfortunately it isn’t much better for us as students; by the time we graduate, we are nearly four times more likely to develop depression or other mental health issues. When we finally become attorneys, we enter this adversarial system where there’s always a winner and a loser and we can’t always be the winner.

Because of this competition, this sink or swim attitude, it creates this atmosphere of stress and anxiety that looms over every law school and stays with us throughout our entire career.

One of the biggest challenges we face is erasing the stigma of mental health issues, and many troubled students keep to themselves and refuse to seek help out of fear. Take a look at the information here and let these people know that they are not alone by raising awareness of mental health issues.

Seeking help is not a sign of weakness, but rather a sign of strength.

For immediate help: National Suicide Prevention Hotline (800.784.2433)

ABA Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP)

Alcoholism, drug addiction, and mental health problems are afflictions that affect a great number of professionals including lawyers and judges. To provide a model for assisting lawyers whose practices had been impaired by addictions, the ABA created the Commission on Lawyer Assistance Programs (CoLAP) to provide support to attorneys fighting addictions as well as stress, depression, and other mental health problems. The Commission’s primary goal is to advance the legal community’s knowledge of impairments facing lawyers and to provide a response to those issues.

Resources from CoLAP and the ABA

ABA Mental Health Reports

Mental Health Working Groups