The turning point. When did things start to go wrong?

charles middle school

Adolescence is when things with Charles started falling apart–around 2010. I was scrambling around trying to help him keep it all together. I started to see signs that were alarming but I couldn’t get a handle on it.

In 5th grade and middle school, Charles’ teachers kept telling

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Cosby High School is the first to pilot the #umatterchallenge!

Check out the video the teens did! Thanks to Alex Chaffee, teen leader and member of the Swift Creek YMCA Leader’s Club for her help in leading the charge on this social media mental illness acceptance and suicide prevention program! And to all the students who stood

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Is there more stigma with depression or addiction?

Changes in stigma ahead

I thought stigma was bad with depression until Charles developed a drug habit. Don’t get me wrong, it’s bad with both. Due to lack of understanding and education, both depression and addiction are seen as “weaknesses.”

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The #umatterchallenge

This challenge starts on Feb 21, 2016. You can sign up now and you can sign up any time after that.

Program inspiration

Charles Aubrey Rogers died by suicide June 5, 2015. He was 20 years old and suffered from depression, anxiety and ultimately addiction.

He was a creative genius and one of the funniest and most popular

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Teens and Young Adults: How to help your friend with depression?

how can you help

Teens and young adults ask me this question a lot. They have a friend who is confiding in them. That friend may be cutting, thinking of suicide, doing a lot of drugs, having trouble sleeping or just really depressed lately.

This is for those of you thoughtful enough to listen to that friend who is

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Goals for 2017

Funny how Preventure is in the US Surgeon General’s Report but not in the US. But it could be! Vivek Murphy. My hero!

1. Get Preventure mental health and drug prevention initiative integrated in Virginia schools. 

I need parents to say they want this in our area! Tell teachers, call principals. Deadline is Feb 3 for getting letters from 30 principals. If we can get the letters to

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Educators, we need your help supporting Preventure drug program

This grant has been submitted in Virginia. We got the letters we needed. Thank you so much. We will keep you up to date. If you want updates, here is the link to our email list for Preventure Updates.

In order to see that the evidence-based Preventure Adolescent Drug Prevention Program is implemented here in Virginia, we need letters of support from educators. Directions below. 

To clarify, the letter is not committing schools

A letter shows interest on the part of the school to participate in such trial. The main purpose of these letters

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Shame

shame-003When Charles first started abusing drugs, we didn’t talk about it. Right at first I felt some shame but more frustration and fear.

Was it drugs or was it mental illness? We did find out eventually that it was mental illness first and the initial drug use was a result of his wanting to feel

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