Mental Health Monday – Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

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The new talk line/help line number has been streamlined to an easy to remember three digit number –

988

It’s the same information, trained counselors willing to listen to you and your concerns, ready to help.

This is the first post for Mental Health Monday this month. I have a friend who commited suicide a few years ago – his birthday was last week, and he was so young, and I think of him often as does his family and his fiance.

When I felt suicidal I was fortunate to have friends encouraging me to get help, a doctor who listened, and a patient family, who may not have understood, but still became supportive to my needs. Simply adjusting the medication took a toll on all of us.

But we got through it.

And I’m glad to be able to post these hopefully helpful encouragements and resources. My main go-to resource is the NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) website. Visit them and look around to see what suits you.

Mental Health Monday – National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

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988

Beginning last Saturday, this easier to remember three-digit number is how to reach the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The other number still works, and this is not a new line. 988 will connect you to the existing suicide prevention lifeline. As with 1-800-273-8255, this is not a 9-1-1 call, and will not connect you to emergency services. This is crisis counseling with trained counselors. It may be used for phone calls, texts, and chat.

The Lifeline and 988 (information link)

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) (information link)

Mental Health Monday

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September is Suicide Prevention Month. Each year, too many people commit suicide and one thing that would prevent some of those suicides is knowing where to go to get help. Visit the websites of these three organizations and find out how you can get help or how you can help someone in crisis.

NAMI – National Alliance on Mental Illness.

NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.

The Trevor Project – for LGBTQ+ and Trans Youth.

The Trevor Project provides confidential support for LGBTQ youth in crisis, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Election Connection – 21 Weeks – Anti-Racist Resources

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With the surge of justice Twitter, Black Lives Matter, Defund the Police, Vote, we are being bombarded with some messages that we may not have been exposed to before.

For those of us who are white, it is time to stop talking and listen to the voices of the black experience. What follows is several resources that I have found in the last week simply by listening to those voices.

Later this week, I will share some people to follow on social media (primarily Twitter). Please contact me through comments or email with any suggestions of black voices that you want amplified.

NAACP

ACLU

Racial Inequality and Injustice – A Panel facilitated by Misha Collins through GISH (his charity scavenger hunt)

NAMI’s Statement on Recent Racist Incidents and Mental Health Resources for African Americans (this link is a repost from yesterday)

The Anti-Racist Starter Kit by Brea Baker

5 Ways to Better Support the Movement

10 Documentaries to Watch About Race Instead of Asking a Person of Colour to Explain Things For You

Baratunde’s World-Saving Books

Unlearning and Relearning Through Literature (Victoria Alexander’s Twitter Link)

Anti-Racist Resource Guide created by Victoria Alexander, MEd

Anti-Racism Resources for White People

Mental Health Monday – Mental Health Awareness Month

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May is Mental Health Awareness Month.

Each Monday from now until the second week in June will be the Mental Health Monday series with suggestions, resources, and coping tools. I would love for you to share what works for you in the comments, and I can gather them together for a future post for others.
It is more important than ever to be aware of our mental health, what triggers we face, and how to cope and overcome some of the difficulties.

Awareness is especially relevant in today’s world while we struggle through this unprecedented global pandemic with new surprises popping up every day in all aspects of our lives.

Today, instead of working on a more detailed first post, I was taking care of my own mental health, enjoying Star Wars with my family, eating comfort food (Kraft Macaroni & Cheese), praying the rosary, seeing my son for the first time in a long time, and most importantly, ignoring Twitter. Sometimes you just need to know when to stop and step away, and for me, that was today.

I have three resources to offer you today:

NAMI – National Association of Mental Illness

My own COVID-19 Mental Health and Crisis Information During the Pandemic Post
Wil Wheaton – he is very open about his depression and anxiety and many of his personal essays are helpful, even if only for knowing that you are not alone.

Inspire. April.

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Some things have changed since March’s Inspire post. A lot of things across this country and across the world. We can still move forward while in isolation though. I’ve seen online that some people are using this time to learn a new skill, a new language, write the Great American Novel, learn to cook. And some of us are simply trying to get through another day while trying not to suffocate in the constant presence of our families. I am somewhere in the middle. I am not taking up any new skills, but I am thinking about writing more. I’ve been cooking more in the last two weeks than in the last two years, which is a welcome change to both my family and myself. I will share some of our recipes as the days go on, just as I would in a regular year. I usually spend my mornings attending daily mass (on Facebook Live) and then watching and screenshotting Governor Cuomo’s daily press briefing. It makes me feel as if I’m doing something to help my community, and I have received positive feedback from it.

On the other hand, I’ve also found myself full of anxiety, with my brain going into overdrive, and not being able to shut down for sleep. Even in the dark, I’m wearing an eye mask. I think the light pressure on my head helps calm me down enough to fall asleep. Our family has been very lucky in our circumstances so far, and I will probably write and share about that another time. Easter and Passover are around the corner, and we are preparing for both. My next shopping trip will be Thursday to gather all the goodies for Easter dinner and Easter baskets. I am hoping to see my son, but time will tell. (He is a first responder and so he is working every day. I don’t know his holiday schedule yet.) I started a new book called The Boston Massacre. You know, some light reading.

Stay Home. Save Lives.

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement.

Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”

– Helen Keller

Graphic provided by NAMI on Instagram. (c)2020

Mental Health Resources

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Attitudes in Reverse FB

NAMI

NAMI Instagram

The Trevor Project

Project UR OK

Better U Better Us

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Confidential crisis hotline available 24/7

IMAlive An online crisis network with trained volunteers available to chat 24/7.

Drug Rehab [dot] com by Advanced Recovery Systems

My crisis intervention page will be updated on Saturday.

Mental Health Monday begins for the rest of the month on Monday, September 16th.

Please share your own resources in the comments and offer feedback on any of the above that you have familiarity with.