ABOUT SASHA RASKIN, THE FOUNDER
Hi, my name is Sasha Raskin and I’m the Founder of A BEAUTIFUL MESS, a mental health organization that runs corporate talks and events to combat loneliness, depression and stigma.
I founded A BEAUTIFUL MESS for deeply personal reasons. I spent most of my life as a high-functioning, high-achieving suicidal depressive. Like many people, you wouldn't have known because life looked great and impressive from the outside. I started college at 16, graduated with honors from a top tier university (UC Berkeley), went on to be a literary agent at one of the biggest agencies in the globe (United Talent Agency), working with everyone from celebrities to business moguls to Nobel prize-winning scientists. I even became a tech executive and founder after my agenting days.
But, I was miserable throughout. In 2018, I checked myself into a mental hospital, at which point I thought my life was over. That no one would want to date me, love me, marry me or even be my friend. I thought if I wanted a good life I'd have to keep things a secret. That's when I knew I had to tell everyone because I didn't want to leave a life of secrecy and shame, nor did I want to perpetuate the stigma that keeps mental illness in the dark.
That one decision changed everything. Sharing my story led to many people sharing their own, and for many of them I was the only person they told because of the shame and social pressure.
I decided that was unacceptable. What kind of world did we build such that people felt they needed to hide their full true selves from the people closest to them? I created A BEAUTIFUL MESS so we had spaces where we could show up totally and unabashedly. Everything from our joys and desires to our pain and our struggles, it's all welcome here. In essence, I created A BEAUTIFUL MESS to be the resource I wish I had.
My mission is that by the end of 2021, every major company will have mental health events built-in as a normal part of their workweek. Please contact me to help me reach this goal!