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Carl Radke Opens Up About Mental Health Awareness Following His Brother's Passing
"I want to help those people by letting them know they are not alone, and the help is out there," the Summer House cast member shared.
Carl wrote on Instagram in advance of the episode, "Sharing our lives and opening up about things we never thought we’d have to is really hard. All I can say is don’t be afraid to check in on your loved ones."
He previously opened up about his brother during an interview with TODAY earlier this month, recalling fond memories of "hanging out together at baseball games or weekend soccer games." "I wanted to be just like him as a kid," Carl recalled. "He was an amazing athlete who played five different sports and was well respected."
Now, Carl is encouraging an open dialogue around mental health.
"Mental health and addiction is so incredibly powerful and so common yet people are afraid to talk about it. The pandemic has not only opened our eyes to how many people are struggling, but we’re seeing how many don’t have the proper information to get help, or know where to even start," he told TODAY. "I want to help those people by letting them know they are not alone, and the help is out there. The only way to do that is to talk about it. I have partnered with Shatterproof, a nonprofit dedicated to reversing the addiction crisis."
Carl went on to note how being on a platform like Summer House has allowed him "to talk about important issues and to raise awareness and hopefully encourage some change." "After my brother passed, I helped design some T-shirts and merchandise, where the proceeds were donated to a rehab center that my brother spent time at. The funds raised will help other families who are struggling," he shared. "I hope we can have more conversations about mental health and addiction. If one person [sees] this and picks up the phone or logs onto Shatterproof to get help, it's a win. My brother had a big heart and was so willing to help others around him when he could."
"Our thoughts and prayers are with @carlradke and his family. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, there is hope," said a tweet on Bravo's official Twitter account, encouraging people to visit Shatterproof's website for more information.
Lindsay Hubbard sent her love to Carl and his mother, Sharon, following Thursday's episode of Summer House. "My sweet Carl, Seeing you in pain that day broke my heart into a million pieces. And thinking about it still does.. I’m crying as I type this because I know how hard it is to relive our summers past, but for you to have to relive that particular day... I’m just so sorry," she wrote to her friend on Instagram on February 26. "I want you to know how unbelievably strong you are, how proud I am of your growth, and for facing your emotions head on. You have one of the best hearts in this world and I will always work to protect it. I love you and [Sharon] beyond words!"
Hannah Berner also showed her support for Carl and his family in a post on Instagram on February 26. "We love you so much @carlradke. Sending thoughts and prayers to the entire beautiful Radke family," she wrote. "So many people struggle with mental health and addiction and putting your story out there has helped people feel less alone in the fight."
Carl previously showed his gratitude for all of the kindness he and his family have received while opening up about mental health awareness and supporting the Gaiser Addiction Center. "Thank you to all my friends and family and extended family for the [love] and support over the last couple weeks," he wrote in a post on Instagram on September 4. "From the bottom of our hearts it means so much."
He went on to open up about the recent loss of his brother. "A couple of weeks ago, my brother Curtis passed away after a life-long battle with mental illness and addiction. Losing my big brother is something I never could have imagined, and the sense of loss is even greater," Carl shared. "My brother had an amazing sense of humor. The quotes and silly scenes in movies that we would share are still making me laugh... I’ve been wanting to share loving memories of my brother for a while and now seems like the perfect time. A lot of people are struggling; I’m even more compelled to break the stigma around mental illness [and] addiction."
"As I reflect on Curtis’ legacy, I think of his huge heart and passion for life. I know he would want to transform tragedy into something uplifting," Carl continued. "I’m making it my mission to bring some light to one of the darkest experiences I’ve ever faced… and contributing something in my brother’s honor."