In 2014, Kristina Wong wrote an article on XOJane about her struggles with depression. Titled “I Thought Being Miserable Was Part of Being Chinese American,” the article called attention to the silence around mental health issues in many Asian American communities. Wong’s article also pointed to the invisibility of these issues in the larger national conversation about mental health up until the very recent past. (According to the American Psychological Association (APA), the first national study on Asian American mental health was conducted in 2002). Because topics such as depression, suicide, and PTSD are too fraught to discuss in public spaces like classrooms and workplaces, this silence in and around Asian American communities is doubly troubling and perhaps reinforces prevailing stereotypes and assumptions about these groups.
This archive seeks to bring together resources for a series of lessons for high school English classrooms on mental health issues in Asian American communities and resources that hopefully will be of use to Asian American teenagers and their families who are wrestling with questions about mental health. The resources collected here include articles, websites, texts, films, and media that put different disciplines in conversation with each other and explore the wide and sometimes still unmapped terrain of Asian American mental health.