We need to make suicide a household word

You’re probably thinking, “Why would I want to make a dour, gloomy, depressing subject like suicide a household word?”

Talking about suicide does not give someone the idea.conversation-about-suicide

The idea is already in their heads.

By repeating it, taking it out of the dark and putting it in the spotlight, we give people permission to reach out, we remove the secrecy and stigma and make the idea look like a less logical solution.

Just as important as talking about it, is the listening part

Listening is a skill we don’t do enough of. We tend to lecture our teens for … Read more... “We need to make suicide a household word”

Not exactly a suicide note

escape-cloudsHere’s how I understand the why of his suicide. His brain telling him he wanted to go, had to go. It would be better somewhere else. It was too painful here.

It is through these songs, as painful as they are to read, that I understand his depression. I wish he would’ve given life here another shot.

Run Free

Problems just pilin’ all around me
Wish I could just wilin’ in Hawaiian islands
Taking shots of crown
Let the alcohol drown
Take a look around
All this bullshit surround got me down
Wish I could just run free fun free, … Read more... “Not exactly a suicide note”

Looking at the other side of addiction

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I sit in this warm room surrounded by the bravest, most passionate people I have ever seen. I am now a familiar face and certain gentlemen greet me and ask me questions which I welcome.

Just a short time ago the man speaking had been sleeping under a bridge. Hard to imagine. He is articulate and emotional. This guy could be a motivational speaker.

He’s about 45 and moved to tears he’s so thankful to be alive.

He expresses how grateful he is to the other brothers in the room, fellow addicts, for taking him in once he made that … Read more... “Looking at the other side of addiction”

A Rap Song from Charles about Snack Time. #humor

Charles loved sweets. Loved snacks. Loved little convenience stores. He would stand at that aisle and take forever to make a choice.

His earliest addiction was sugar. I can remember finding a bunch of packages of candy under his bed when he was around 8-10 years old and then sitting on the bed crying. I knew it had to be a precursor to addiction. Then I thought I could do something about it which I couldn’t.

Although he was the funniest human being I ever met, he doesn’t have many funny or lively songs.

The Rap Diary after all, was … Read more... “A Rap Song from Charles about Snack Time. #humor”

Charles’ Diagnosis from Wilderness

Document attachments are at the very bottom

05-21-12 CR
By this time, Charles had softened a bit. He was showing us the picture we sent of his dog Andy. Still our dog.

Many of you are currently dealing with a child (however old) with an mental illness. It was difficult for some reason to get a diagnosis in writing.

Time and again someone would start to treat him without a true assessment. Wilderness, 2nd Nature in Clayton, Georgia gave us that.

During his stay there, we had weekly one hour meetings by phone with his counselor. We also received letters from Charles … Read more... “Charles’ Diagnosis from Wilderness”

Grief and daylight savings time make me a noodle head

Is my new normal about being stupid?

14787bfee610be209d37056b46883436Nothing is worse for your grief than lack of sleep. You know if you don’t sleep you are weepier and more prone to sinking into the black hole of grief despair.

And nothing kicks that up like that “spring forward” time of year. Not that I have any past experience with grief and spring forward.

I had started to get up earlier and felt a little lift with spring coming when seeing that sunshine come through the blinds. That was prior to Daylight Savings Time (DST).

Adjusting for me has always been hard. … Read more... “Grief and daylight savings time make me a noodle head”

Grief: Is that a visit from a ghost?

I feel like I’ve gotten weird and I know some of you might think that my experiences are desperation by a grieving mom.  Maybe they are. But I don’t really know how to explain some of them especially this one.

So here goes.

I’m walking the dog on Wednesday around noon this week, and it’s like 80 degrees F and suddenly out of the blue I feel this very cold, concentrated breeze for lack of a better description. Probably more like a blast. And then it’s gone.

So I look around to see if I’m on a grate or near … Read more... “Grief: Is that a visit from a ghost?”

Grief and Suicide: It was not my choice to reinvent myself

Since Charles’ death June 5, 2015, I am a different person. With a different life. And a different purpose.

I have always been passionate. But I am propelled forward now in a different way than ever before.

For years we suffered with Charles through his struggles with depression, anxiety, ADHD, addiction and the sleep disorder. And I wondered what my purpose was. I always had faith there was one, I simply didn’t know what it was.

I wondered if it was to get this young man to adulthood as a stable adult who could take care of himself.

Unfortunately, that … Read more... “Grief and Suicide: It was not my choice to reinvent myself”

The lollipop land of shiny faces and perfect families is a dangerous facade

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We have created a fake world presenting only the best side of our families and friends and rarely sharing pain or struggle.

We created it in social media, in person and at social events.

I’m not proposing we go all newspaperish by being negative and presenting only bad news. But it’s time to strike a balance.

We are a society obsessed with accomplishments

We are quick to pass judgement on those whose children are not currently succeeding by our standards. And our current fast-paced society breeds anxiety, depression and dysfunction.

We are a sharing society. Only we choose to share only that which is … Read more... “The lollipop land of shiny faces and perfect families is a dangerous facade”

Upcoming speaking, workshop or panel events

microphone_318-50712Scheduled speaking events are now located on this page.

If you know of someone looking for a speaker for mental health and suicide prevention, contact me.

My speaker proposal is here