Glen Dale, W. Va. (WTRF)-As the country music industry lost a beloved star, Naomi Judd’s death is sparking a global conversation on mental health illness. 

Judd was 76. But had tragically passed away the same weekend she was supposed to make the Country Music Hall of Fame. 

The world knew Naomi Judd from the Grammy-winning duo The Judds.  

From winning 9 Country Music Association Awards, 7 from the Academy of Country Music to 5 Grammy awards, The Judds were a success. But behind the scenes, Naomi Judd struggled with mental illness. 

“Fame, fortune, all those things… They are no protection over mental illness.” 

Robert Bowman, clinical therapist

Like in Judd’s case, therapist Robert Bowman says mental illness shouldn’t be taken lightly. 

“(We need to be) really taking people’s symptoms seriously and trying to give them the strength they need to address the symptoms they have.” 

Robert Bowman, clinical therapist

Whether it’s someone you’re passing by in the streets or a friend or co-worker you see every day, anyone can be affected by mental illness. 

The key is knowing what to look for. Bowman says this may involve feelings of guilt or feelings of being a burden on their family. Even being isolated or losing interest in activities they once enjoyed.  

And if some or all signs point to you or someone you know, Bowman says you’re not alone. Help is there. 

“If you are not able to function as you have, if you aren’t enjoying your life, it’s okay. A lot of people will reach out and need help. it’s just like a medical issue. Often, if you have a mental illness and don’t address it, it leads to medical problems, so you don’t want that problem either.” 

Robert Bowman, clinical therapist

Bowman says WVU Medicine Reynolds Memorial Hospital mental health services’ door is always open. There are also many other outpatient providers and impatient units they offer. 

And above all, Bowman says has this left to say to anyone battling a mental illness out there. 

“Things can be fixed.”

Robert Bowman, clinical therapist

If anyone you know is struggling with this, therapists say you can help too. Just let them know you’re there for them and listening. 

If you or someone you know is having these thoughts and needs help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1 (800) 273-8255.