She finished third place on Season 2 of BET’s Sunday Best gospel music singing competition last 2009 and went on to become a successful contemporary gospel musician. She even had two album releases and songs that made it to the charts. Who would have suspected that the talented Latice Crawford was suffering from Social Anxiety?
Studies show that religious people are less likely to have anxiety or other mental disorders but there are still those who suffer from this illness but are scared to talk about it. Latice is one of those who bravely came out and opened up how it is to live as a Christian with social anxiety disorder. She recently shared about her struggle with social anxiety disorder in a blog article with Essence magazine online. She said she remembers how most people thought and even commented about how easy it is for her to confidently perform on the stage in front of an audience. It would shock everyone to know that she actually has panic attacks every time she is about to perform. She has somehow managed to hide her social anxiety disorder for years.
Opening up was never easy for her and it is a huge step to even go further and share it to public. She said, “As a woman of faith, it was difficult to talk about suffering from this disorder because I thought the non-believer would think my God wasn’t real because he couldn’t or wouldn’t heal me and other Christians would tell me to pray about it because it’s the devil.” She explained that having social anxiety does not necessarily mean that you are too shy or that you won’t want anyone. Contrary to what many believe, there are good days and bad days for people with this condition. During good days, they are able to socialize with others but during the bad days, this is the time when they are extremely isolated and would hide in a shell like a hermit as she described it.
What made her decide to finally open up was learning about how to cope with her condition. She figured that what she needed to do was to talk about it. This is her way of balancing the anxiety disorder by having an outlet, identifying the trigger points and to talk about it more. She thanks the Sunday Best singing competition for helping her gain confidence and to cope with her social anxiety disorder. She also cites her experience as a mother to have also helped her deal with her condition. She has been very open to her son and has constantly educated him about social anxiety disorder. She is most grateful to God for guiding her when she started to know more about her condition. It was through research that she realized that she can find ways to cope with it.
Nowadays, she is able to manage her panic attacks and has been actively engaged in the music ministry. She has been sharing her story in her testimonies to send a message of hope and to show that being religious does not mean being perfect but rather having such challenges that they can work with their faith.