With two movies releasing this year about the children's television star, much has been said about the impact that Fred Rogers had on the children of this country. What began as a local children's hour on a small television station in Pennsylvania became a national phenomenon. Fred Rogers entered the homes of children across the country and encouraged them to talk about their feelings and to love themselves and each other. We can learn much from the teachings that Mr. Rogers shared with his young audience. The first episode aired in 1968. Now, 50 years later, the message of Fred Rogers and his legacy still lives on. What did a children's television show host teach us about mental health? Need mental health therapy in Columbus, OH? Call Legacy!
He Taught Us Acceptance
The cardigans Fred wore on every show were knitted for him by his mother. In one episode, he showed viewers the sweaters and said that they reminded him of her. Rogers then shared that these sweaters reminded him of how important it is to care for others truly. "Love isn't a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun like ‘struggle.’ To love someone is to strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now.” Accepting our loved ones as they are and accepting ourselves as we are helping us feel supported and understood. When a loved one struggles with their mental health, or we feel unlovable because of our mental illness, it's important to remember that we are lovable just the way we are right now.
There Is Always a Reason to Help
Whether you know someone who is struggling with depression or low self-esteem or you feel like you need to reach out for help, Mr. Rogers delivered a message that resonates with the importance of finding hope and those who are ready to help, no matter how dark the situation may seem. Fred reminds us that hope is never far away. "My mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'”
Mr. Rogers was fond of ensuring that his young audience knew how vital they were. Taking care of themselves and their neighbors was his message throughout every episode. For more information, please click here for part two.
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