Lzzy Hale has taken to social media to launch a mental health awareness campaign in the wake of the tragic death of Huntress frontwoman Jill Janus. Hale is asking fans to #RaiseYourHorns if they’d ever struggled with mental health issues, with a picture of herself kicking off the trend.
Janus, who fronted the California heavy metal band Huntress, died of a suicide earlier this week after a long struggle with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and dissociative identity disorder, according to Loudwire. Janus’ mental health battles became very public in 2015, when she suddenly ended Huntress, Loudwire reports. Although the band didn’t end up splitting up, Janus continued to struggle with mental health issues until she ultimately ended her life on August 14.
Hale, who referred to Janus as her “scream sister,” posted an emotional tribute to the frontwoman on Instagram, before turning to Twitter to urge her fans to share a picture of themselves “raising your horns,” referring to a hand gesture that is popular at many rock concerts and festivals.
In her Instagram post, Hale reminded her fans and loved ones that “we are all in this together,” and that nobody struggling with mental health issues is alone.
“Asking for help doesn’t mean you’re broken. And if you don’t know how to ask for help, that’s okay too. Those of us who have a shoulder will let you lean on it! We are all in this life together. For those of you with the ability to lend a hand or and ear, DO IT! We have a responsibility to help each other, ‘cuz everything we say, do and touch affects the whole race. We are all connected.”
After her tribute on Instagram, Hale took to Twitter to share a similar message. “Hey Freaks, I’d like to do something. I want everyone who has ever struggled with mental health to #RaiseYourHorns take a pic, tag and share it. The more of us that put it out there, the less alone we will all feel & we will be one step closer to breaking the mental health stigma!”
Her post has already received nearly five thousand 1,137 retweets as of Friday afternoon. The response from her fans has been immense, with thousands of people posting pictures of themselves throwing up the horns and sharing their own struggles with mental health issues. Many fans thanked Hale for spreading awareness on “such a taboo subject.”
“Everyday is a battle with depression and anxiety,” Twitter user Chrissy wrote. “And yeah, sometimes the darkness wins, but those nights/days aren’t permanent. #RaiseYourHorns for those that feel alone. Please remember that you never are. Please reach out. And never ever let the darkness take you away.”
Some users talked about the help that Halestorm’s music had brought them during hard times, while others spoke about their battles with PTSD, addiction and bipolar, among many others.
“I was trying to think of something inspirational to say but depression and mental health can’t really be summed up in a tweet. So…
#RaiseYourHorns in solidarity with those who’ve been down, are down, or couldn’t make it up and keep on keepin’ on,” Tim Trutone wrote.
If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression and thinking of suicide, know that someone is always there. Additionally, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-273-8255.