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The NFL’s Brandon Marshall and His Mental Health Crusade

2011 Chicago Bears [ALT logo] Schedule WallpaperI am a mental health consumer and advocate. I am also a huge NFL fan.

So, I’m extremely excited about the Chicago Bears’ Brandon Marshall.

A few days ago, Marshall received the biggest Bears’ wide receiver contract ever—3 years at $30 million.

It’s obvious from this payout that he’s a beast on the field.

Lesser known to the football masses is his diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Instead of shying away from it, Marshall bravely owned it, and is making a difference in others’ lives, too.

This pro is an inspiration to young people with a mental health condition—a talented, trendy, handsome 30-year-old with a commitment to ending stigma and supporting others that is just as important to him as his play on the field.

The Brandon Marshall Foundation strives to show those with mental illness that they do not have to live in silence.  Every penny of donations to the foundation goes directly to services, including early intervention for kids, funding organizations that help people with BPD, lending emotional support to victims of abuse, and more.

Last NFL season, Marshall wore lime green cleats to support mental illness during a game. I was pleasantly surprised to see a famous athlete forwarding the cause of mental health awareness.

His wife, Michi Nogami, is a fantastic partner and supporter of the foundation as well. This month, a $25+ donation also gets you Michi’s OPI nail color, Crazy Stigma Green. It’s a beautiful shade, and you’re supporting their organization, too.

Yes, he’s an alum of my university and a local boy, but even without those personal ties, I am incredibly impressed with his class and commitment.

The “face” of mental disorders is often blank, a silhouette, full of false pretenses and ignorance.

Even though mental disorders like bipolar, BPD, depression, and anxiety are all around us, it still seems many people are confused about the reality of  an illness like this, especially for those under 35.

Brandon Marshall is a perfect depiction of this reality for young people with mental disorders and all of us, in general. He is positive, hard-working, and creates hope out of his struggle.

Borderline Personality Disorder is tough. It’s a daily, weekly, and yearly struggle, but as evidenced by this pro’s new paycheck, non-profit, and beloved wife, he is making great decisions, thinking of others, and striving to make a big impact.

Thank you, Brandon and Michi, for your support and representation where there is much more work to do.

We cannot erase stigma quickly, but we can educate others one step at a time.

Brandon and his family are impactfully doing so.

To a great wrap-up of May Mental Health Month,



Photo Credit: Charlie Lyons-Pardue via Compfight

The NFL’s Brandon Marshall and His Mental Health Crusade

Kat Dawkins

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APA Reference
Dawkins, K. (2014). The NFL’s Brandon Marshall and His Mental Health Crusade. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 2, 2020, from


Last updated: 23 May 2014
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