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  • Writer's pictureJustin Mendoza


Updated: Jun 1

Mental Health Awareness Month + Pride Month is my time to really shine!

I’m queer, sober, neurodivergent, and a trauma survivor with multiple mental health diagnoses. These truths do not wholly define my identity but I no longer feel shame around them and choose to self-disclose to normalize and hopefully show how they do not need to be limiting.

Some of these experiences have contributed to my c-PTSD, OCD, and high-functioning anxiety. And though my overachieving and perfectionist adaptations may be socially desirable and perceived as ‘successful’, internally they can be quite challenging…both superpower and kyrptonite.

Similarly, as an Empath and Highly-Sensitive Person (HSP), I have been able to apply these qualities in my current field and former career in design. But creative and emotional work—and being a business owner—can also be exhausting and trigger insecurities.

Still, I rise…seeking to fulfill my potential but in an authentic way, being both vulnerable AND strong. As a ‘Wounded Healer’, I do so for myself and others, using my voice to hopefully empower others to use theirs…

Like Josh Kilmer-Purcell whom I had the privilege to meet when I interned just a few years after he and his husband Brent Ridge started Beekman 1802 (because of course I used ‘time off’ to learn and work). Being passionate about the wellness and thriving of my queer community and appreciating the value of out and proud role models as he and Brent demonstrate, I took his cue to share these tender parts of my story that also make me 'Crazy Successful'.

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