I need testimonials

keynote speaker mental health

I am going to apply at some speaker’s bureaus. Hopefully, next year I’ll get some paid speaking gigs so I can continue my advocacy work.  Because I can’t afford to retire yet and need to make a living.

For my applications, I need quotes from people who’ve seen me speak.

I really hate to ask this. But if you’ve seen me, I would love some feedback and quotes in your words. You can comment below or send a message. Thank you.

 
Read more...

Battle Scars

by Paul Buskey

We don’t know as we go through life, how often we may or may not impact someone else. But our daily interactions, no matter how brief, can actually change a life and make a difference. I want to tell you a story about what happened and how it impacted my life.

I live in Richmond and was visiting New York with my family when I saw a young lady with noticeable scars. I stopped because I recognized what those scars were from and I walked up to her and directly referenced them but not in the way … Read more...

I need your stories

Your stories help others. And I want to share them.

If you are in recovery, what was your rock bottom? Did you lose custody and how did you feel? How have you been treated? How many funerals of friends have you been to?

If you have lived experience as someone who suffers mental illness, tell us what it’s like to have an invisible illness.

If you have a child or loved one that suffers from a mental illness or addiction or you have lost a loved one, I’d like you to tell your story.

A piece of that story. Something … Read more...

Preventure at one more school in Richmond, VA?

VCU and Beacon Tree will be resubmitting the PreVenture grant to NIH in November. Big grants take a long time and we had to make some changes per the NIH review.

While we wait, we might as well get the ball rolling and implement Preventure at one more school through Beacon Tree. Hanover County, VA is doing one school now, with a grant they got from ABC. That makes them the first in the US. There are two potential schools on the radar. I’ve spoken to one but open to others. Approval will need to happen fast since we … Read more...

Be emotionally naked. And wear it out!

Emotionally Naked T-Shirts. Unisex, Women’s shaped shirts, sweath shirts, long sleeved shirts. Gray, white, light blue. All sizes xxs-3XL

Check out the edgiest t-shirt with the coolest vibe ever! Made of homespun soft cotton sewn with love by cute little old ladies in Kansas. OK that last part might be a tad exaggerated except for the soft part. Richard, my oldest, chose the quote on the back. And he said he is going to wear it out in California where a cool vibe is More important than food and water.

Our village is growing. In fact, we’ve had over a … Read more...

I may be dreaming, but here’s what I’m looking for

Why not? Dream a little. So maybe you can help me and I thought I’d ask you guys. I have a village that can help after all. Some of these are lofty requests, but what the hay, right? So the name of the site is emotionally naked, which means I’m going to be out with it with some requests. If you can help, contact me.

1. Stories from people of color

I have met those of other races who have lost loved ones to suicide and/or addiction. I have few of these stories on this site and I want … Read more...

‘People choose to be depressed,’ said my father

by Logan, 13

trapped

Father.

A word that taunted me for years but seemed to give everyone around me an immense sense of joy.

I would ask myself constantly, “Why don’t I feel the same?” I knew why and I would remind myself what I had been taught about my feelings. They’re insignificant. My feelings and what I knew were just because I’m a teenager and “every teenager hates their parents.” But I didn’t hate my parents– at least not my Mother who had worked so hard to be OK.

Not only did I have depression, which made me feel like … Read more...

Despite my bipolar disorder, I’ve been able to hold down a job

tammy
Tammy and Anne Moss at the Trees of Hope fundraiser for Beacon Tree Foundation

by Tammy Ozolins

For 14 years now I have been able to hold down a job. When you suffer from mental illness, that is a big deal.

When I was first diagnosed with bipolar 2, I was working a full-time job and it was very hard to keep it. The depression made it very challenging. I did not want to go to work. Heck, I did not even want to get up in the morning.

All I wanted to do was stay in bed, not shower … Read more...

Behind the Smile

“Writing is a healthy coping mechanism compared to the other unhealthy ones I express in my writing.” –Morgan

by Morgan Altic

There was a girl
With her chin held up high
Covering up her pain
None of her friends knew she wanted to die

She walked through the halls
Holding secrets that were hard to bear
If only someone knew what was going on within her
Yet nobody seemed to care

There’s only one release
For the pain that still remains
The blade that’s embedded in her wrist
And a shirt that’s covered in blood stains

She has good days … Read more...