Mental Illness is Costly… #mentalhealth #dontgiveup

the more i tap into my own emotions and the emotions of others, i realize how much time and money you have to spend because of it.

its not just in the aspect of spending time and money to get therapy and/or meds to get help, it also takes away  time and money when the illness is untreated. in fact, it is more detrimental in this way because it can involve loss. for example, one day you stay inside and miss school or work because of  your anxiety… you go on a shopping spree because you think it will help with your depression… you miss an appointment or therapy session because you want to try to overcome the mental obstacle on your own and not be defined by or labeled because of your illness…  i can list more example but all of these are demonstrations of how someone can miss or lose something because of a mental illness they can’t control on their own. its costly…

amazingly people are still able to trivialize and stigmatize mental illnesses as if they are nothing to talk about. as if they are just something that you can just get over. that irritates me so much and its a giant reason why this blog exists… i want to encourage others to tell their stories about struggles with and triumph over mental illness or negative recurring thoughts due to those illnesses in order to enlighten others about just how real this is. if you or someone you know wants to do so on the suicide prevention website yourenotfinished.com just leave a comment here!

we can fight stigma and decrease… even eliminate the cost of mental illness by being open and showing others our strength in spite of the struggle.

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15 Good Things #NSPW12 #anxiety #depression #suicideprevention

these last few weeks or so have been somewhat of a struggle (severely understated), as it has been a little bit harder than usual to fight my depression and anxiety. harder, but not impossible.

this week i was told to write 15 good things about myself so that i can go back to that whenever i have an anxiety attack or bout of depression/isolation. here’s what i came up with:

– i can make people laugh
– i can sing
– i try my best
– i am strong
– i like to try new things
– i can relate to people
– i can speak well
– i am honest
– i’m a kid at heart
– i have nice skin
– i am a go-getter
– i have learned good lessons from the past
– i have good morals
– i have nice boobs
– i am brave

first of all, this is in no particular order and they are random. as simple as these things sound they were very hard to come up with and i was reaching deep in my brain for this stuff. second of all, the last time someone told me to write a list of good things about myself was when i was like… 8 or something.

i’ve said it once and i will say it again, as kids we are encouraged to show off the good things about ourselves and be proud of who we are. as we grow up people in our society discourages us from doing so because now we are being “boastful” or “egotistical” or “stuck-up”… OR it gets annoying to people so they find ways to shut us down, and we let them because we just want to be loved and accepted by someone… anyone.

this list i have made sounds like it was written by a kid (except the nice boobs part) because it kind of was. it was the last time i was allowed to be proud of being myself. i had to revert and reach back to when i wasn’t hurt, betrayed, disgraced, diagnosed with anxiety and depression… so i had to dig VERY deeply for something basic that i should already know and carry with me everyday (except the nice boobs part haha).

doing something as simple as this, however, is really helpful. sometimes you have to encourage yourself and pick yourself up when people are bringing you down. you have to stay strong and give yourself a chance when others are bullying you or making you feel unloved… you have to dig for that strength inside of yourself that will give you the courage and bravery to see yourself for who you really are or to ask for help in seeing yourself in a positive way. many resources are here on the blog, but if you need help call national suicide prevention hotline at 1-800-273-TALK, or check out http://www.halfofus.com for tips on how to cope.

You Can Help Prevent Suicide! #NSPW12 #suicideprevention

With suicide prevention week coming to a close, here are some things you and I can take notice of and do to help prevent suicide!

While some suicides occur without any outward warning, most people who are suicidal do give some warning. 

 

“We can all help prevent the suicide of loved ones by learning to recognize the signs of someone at risk, taking those signs seriously and knowing how to respond,” said Robert Gebbia, executive director for AFSP (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention).

 

Those considering suicide often show signs of depression or anxiety.  Learning to recognize some common warning signs can help save lives:

  • ·         Appearing sad or despondent most of the time
  • ·         Clinical depression – deep sadness, loss of interest, trouble sleeping and eating—that doesn’t go away or continues to get worse
  • ·         Feeling anxious, agitated, or irritable
  • ·         Neglecting personal welfare, deteriorating physical appearance
  • ·         Withdrawing from friends and family
  • ·         Losing interest in work, school, hobbies or other things one used to enjoy
  • ·         Frequent and dramatic mood changes
  • ·         Expressing feelings of guilt or shame or burdensomeness
  • ·         Feeling like a failure
  • ·         Feeling that life is not worth living, having no sense of purpose in life
  • ·         Talking about feeling trapped—like there is no way out of a situation
  • ·         Having feelings of desperation, and saying that there’s no solution to their problems
  • ·         Wishing to be dead or talking about suicide

Keep an eye out for other changes in behavior or actions such as:

  • ·         Showing violent behavior such as punching holes in walls, getting into fights or self-destructive violence; feeling rage or uncontrolled anger or seeking revenge
  • ·         Increase in use of alcohol or other drugs
  • ·         Looking as though one has a “death wish,” by tempting fate and taking risks that could lead to death, such as driving fast or running red lights
  • ·         Giving away possessions
  • ·         Putting affairs in order, tying up loose ends, and/or making out a will
  • ·         Seeking access to firearms, pills, or other means to harm oneself

Knowing these common warning signs and risk factors can help you identify when someone you care about is depressed and needs help.  Never ignore a suicide threat.  For tips on how to help someone who is struggling, please visit www.afsp.org.  And if you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 800-273-TALK (8255).   Veterans in crisis can call this number and press #1 for specific assistance.  Veterans can also chat anonymously online through the Confidential Veterans Chat service available atwww.veteranscrisisline.net or send text messages to 838255.

Petition to Implement & Enforce Mental Health Parity Act #NSPW12 #suicideprevention

Please take a stand for suicide prevention by signing this petition calling for President Barack Obama, Governor Mitt Romney, and Governor Gary Johnson to implement and enforce the Mental Health Parity Act!

Read more about it & sign here:

<div id=”change_BottomBar”><span id=”change_Powered”><a href=”http://www.change.org/&#8221; target=”_blank”>Change.org</a></span><a>|</a><span id=”change_Start”>Free <a href=’http://www.change.org/petition’>Online Petitions</a></span></div>
<script type=”text/javascript” src=”http://e.change.org:80/flash_petitions_widget.js?width=300&petition_id=635661&color=0b5ae0″></script&gt;

Or click/copy the link in your address bar here:

https://www.change.org/petitions/president-barack-obama-governor-mitt-romney-governor-gary-johnson-implement-and-enforce-the-mental-health-parity-act#

 

Thank you so much for your support & making an effort to save lives!

September #NSPW12 #suicideprevention

I think I have finally figured out why my anxiety has been so high lately…

I HATE the month of September.

yes, hate is a strong word but i really couldn’t find another word that could accurately describe how I feel about this month. it the month where everything started to unravel last year (2011), and i was working on going back to therapy. it was the month where i felt overworked and underpaid at my job… where i felt like i was being replaced… where i felt unloved the most… where i started drinking more and more… where the person who i thought was the best friend i had ever had and the only true friend i had who got how screwed up i was, but knew i wanted to get help, walked away and never looked back. its the month i attempted suicide and stayed in a mental health facility… this is the month when i completely lost myself and, i felt, any real hope at a happy ending.

i wonder if anyone else involved in the events that took place last year remembers them as vividly as i do. if they remember it ACCURATELY and not with a jaded perception. if they are thanking God they don’t have to deal with me because i’m out of sight… if for them September was the month that they realized that this chick (to them) was a nutcase, which justified all of their actions towards me. after wondering if that matters, the truth is IT DOESN’T. AND IT NEVER WILL.

i remember being in that mental health hospital… going through group therapy sessions and wanting to just go home each time. acting like i was ok so i could be released faster yet crying my eyes out in the bathroom of the room i shared. i felt like i had to hide my pain at home AND in the place where i was supposed to get help. but then 2 days before i left i actually started to feel like i wasn’t alone and it was ok to need help… and its was ok to ask for it.

i left knowing i would have to rebuild my life… start from scratch. every trigger of bad thoughts needed to be removed from my life. i needed to focus on the people who WANTED to be there and loved me for me. i needed to do the best i could and accept that my best is awesome and its only going to get better. i don’t need to overdo anything. and as time progressed, i knew that i needed to share my experiences with others so that they weren’t alone. so that it doesn’t take a suicide attempt for them to realize how valuable they are.. so that they don’t have to go through what i went through and sometimes still deal with. i learned that other people believing that you should deal with everything on your own does not make it true. 

this is why suicide prevention is important to me. to encourage love, support, and community… to end stigma… to save lives.