I wanted it all to end. And then it did.

I was so distraught when Charles was out somewhere in the city after relapsing from heroin addiction. He still had not admitted to being addicted to that drug although he did admit to an addiction to an opiate. Sort of.

He didn’t want us to know all the ugly details and HIPAA prevented anyone from sharing information with us. So we had to rely on what he was telling us which was usually fabricated or only partly true.

How could I make a decision on wobbly information?

My brain was decision impaired. I wanted all of it to stop–go to … Read more...

Add Crisis Text Line info in physical and virtual classrooms

For teachers, their classrooms and virtual classrooms, and even parents and ministers, make the crisis text line visible.

Below is a downloadable pdf that you can print out and post. Or download the virtual background for use in online classes.

With 25% of teens seriously considering suicide during this pandemic, we need to make the resources visible. There is also a link to a school kit with social media images for schools to post.

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Don’t stick a smiley face on my whine

COVID-19 sucks. Yeah, sure good stuff will come out of it, or has come out of it. Bad stuff, too not to mention a lot of death and people without jobs.

I don’t complain often. Not much at all really. But on a few occasions, someone has stuck a smiley face on my whine and pointed out that “everyone is in the same boat,” or “everyone feels the same way.”

Well, that doesn’t mean I don’t want a minute to moan for a couple of minutes and express what I’ve lost in this process. It might not be as bad … Read more...

Submit your emotionally naked story

I need your story. If you have lived experience with mental illness, addiction, or suicide if you have lost someone to suicide. Stories from veterans, about veterans, about LGBTQ individuals or indigenous people.

If you work with schools, teach coping strategies, or have an upstream strategy to share. The guidelines are here.

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Hanging on for dear life

After my son’s suicide, it was all I could do to exist. Blistering pain, the shock of loss, and fear of the process on which I was to embark left me clinging to the sides of a whirlpool of grief that threatened to suck me in. There were times it was all I could do to hold on.

Finding hope in those early days was a bleak expedition. But I never lost it. If the day started with sunshine, I found it there. If it was a cloudy day, I found it in a flower. There was always a ray … Read more...

First live event since February was very special.

The Speak Up Reach Out (SURO) event in Edward, Colorado was the first live event I’ve done since February. COVID-19 shut down most live events. However, they did this one outside within guidelines as people sat on lawn chairs spaced apart. Although it doesn’t appear to be so, attendance was great with some 80 people attending this outdoor walk event.

Earlier that week, air quality was unbreathable due to fires. Then it snowed and was stormy. But Saturday, September 12, 2020 in Edward, Colorado? It was gorgeous.

The SURO organization is really amazing and I love how they work together … Read more...

Novel at Home: Authors Margaret Thomson & Anne Moss Rogers

A book chat with me, author of, Diary of a Broken Mind, who lost my son, Charles, to suicide, and Margaret Thomson author of The World Looks Different Now and lost her son, Kieran, to suicide. Margaret’s son was active military.

Thank you to Novel Bookstore in Memphis, Tennessee, for hosting the event for suicide prevention month.

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7 steps to divorcing guilt

When I refer to guilt, I’m talking about instances where you think it’s all your fault.

In my case, I struggled with guilt and regret after my son’s suicide. All the regrets and coulda woulda shouldas played in my head on repeat for months and even years. Maybe you have guilt from substance use disorder or a suicide attempt.

You can’t hold yourself hostage for past mistakes you probably had little control over or ones influenced by trauma, crisis, or mental illness forever. Carrying that weight won’t benefit you, your loved ones. At some point to move forward and live … Read more...

Free eBook: The Emotionally Naked Bereavement Provider

Don’t know exactly what to say to someone who is struggling with a loss by suicide? What does it feel like to the bereaved? How can you help?

Whether you are a bereavement counselor, a bereavement group facilitator, an LCSW, or a friend, this guide offers you answers to common questions and ways to help those struggling with this brand of loss.

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Emotionally Naked with Kari Schwear: Gray Area Drinking

If you or someone you know is drinking a lot and you wonder if it’s too much. It doesn’t appear they are physically addicted but could they be emotionally addicted? Not sure? You can always take the 7-day D.E.C.I.D.E.

Here are the gray area drinking points she covers:

1. What is gray area drinking?
2. What are the stressors that drive the behavior?
3. What are the limiting beliefs?
4. Questioning the Drink
5. Thoughts and Emotions
6. How to think Through the Drink
7. What happens when you want to address your own gray area drinking but your … Read more...