#MythBustingMondays -People who can’t stop doing drugs lack willpower

It’s a common misconception and I know so many who wanted recovery more than anything and struggled to stay there.

Drug addiction is a complex disease, and quitting usually takes more than good intentions or a strong will because drugs change the structure of the brain in ways that make quitting difficult, even for the most determined.

As with other chronic health conditions, addiction requires ongoing treatment that should be adjusted based on how the person responds. Many in recovery still go to support groups like AA, NA or SMART Recovery years after they’ve maintained sobriety because it is a … Read more...

#MythBustingMondays The world would be better without me

If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide, this is what your brain is telling you. But it’s a myth. A lie. It can be so intense, so convincing, and you probably struggle to keep yourself from following through.

Another myth is that thoughts of suicide mean you are weak. To have survived this intense pain takes a lot of strength and endurance.

More than anything, I want you to tell someone or ask for help. Be direct and say that you are having thoughts of suicide. I see from my son’s music lyrics that he felt like the world … Read more...

#MythBustingMondays -Suicide rates are highest at the holidays

Suicide rates are highest in the spring, lowest in the winter months

Most people think that there are more suicides around Thanksgiving and Christmas. The truth is that suicide rates are actually lowest in winter months and highest in the spring. October accounted for nearly twice as many suicide attempts as reported in July.

Experts aren’t entirely sure but there are theories.

In a lecture I saw at VCU Grand Rounds, the doctor said the theory was that people don’t have the energy to follow through in the winter.

“During the spring, some people become more physically active or agitated, … Read more...

#MythBustingMondays – Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem

Implying suicide is a cop out is a lazy and a flip comment from a limited point of view. We say it to try to make sense of something we don’t fully understand. It dismisses the fact that the thoughts, for many, can be pervasive. The intense, irrational part when someone is in danger of following through is temporary.

But when someone completes a suicide, we don’t always know how many times someone has suffered through it or what trauma, mental illness, or life event may have triggered it. Over time, they can be difficult to fight and wear someone down. I … Read more...

#MythBustingMondays If your child is addicted, it’s because you didn’t put your foot down

Why was my child abusing drugs?

Was it because we didn’t punish enough, take away enough privileges or otherwise let our child know who was boss?

Maybe we coddled him too much, let him hang out with the “wrong friends,” or worked too much when we should have stayed home.

Or perhaps we didn’t go to church enough, get Charles more involved with activities, or do enough random drug tests.

The truth is, drug abuse and addiction happens to good parents, bad parents, happily married parents, divorced parents. It happens to working moms, stay-at-home moms, dad’s who are involved, dad’s … Read more...

#MythBustingMondays-Once a teen has a suicide attempt, they’ve learned their lesson

Previous suicide attempts are serious predictor of future completed suicide

A  history of one or more suicide attempts is the strongest predictor for future suicidal ideation, suicide attempts, and completed suicide. Almost two thirds of those who die by suicide had a previous attempt which makes it a serious risk factor.

Charles had a previous attempt that I didn’t know to classify as one.  He had told me that he took a bunch of pills and didn’t know why he did it and he was both surprised and glad he woke up the next morning.

Was that a suicide attempt? It was.

I asked mental health professionals about it to … Read more...

There is nothing you can do until they ‘hit bottom’ #MythBustingMondays

by Teresa McBean

I have few commitments; I have a host of good intentions.  One of my commitments is weekly attendance at our Family Education Program on Thursday nights. I attend unless I am out of town or sick enough to require an IV and suffer from a fearful expectation that I should be getting my affairs in order.  This is how committed I am to busting myths about Substance Use Disorder and providing hope and healing for families struggling with this dread disease.

These educational meetings support recovery by educating family members and loved ones of folks who have … Read more...

If someone wants to suicide, you can’t stop them #MythBustingMondays

If someone wants to suicide, you can't stop them #MythBustingMonday

Myth: There is really nothing you can do to help someone who’s truly suicidal
Fact: The understanding, support, and hope that you offer can be a suicidal person’s most important lifeline

I was at a big event and a famous mental health advocate said, “There is really nothing you can do to help someone who’s determined to kill themselves.” I was shocked. While it’s true you don’t have control over what another human being does, it’s rarely true that someone is so “determined” to kill themselves that your intervention has no chance of preventing it.

There are people that plan … Read more...

Relapse means an addicted person lacks willpower #MythBustingMondays

#MythBustingMondays

Myth: Addiction is a moral failing
Fact: Addiction is a disease

Just as a person doesn’t choose to have an addiction, they also cannot simply choose to stop being addicted. When some of us drink alcohol, we can stop. For others, it triggers something in their brains that screams, “I need more.”

In reality, addiction is a chronic brain disease that requires intensive and thorough treatment. Once a person becomes dependent on drugs or alcohol, their brain adjusts to the excessive amount of toxins entering their body. As their body’s tolerance for the drug grows, they need to … Read more...