(Quick! Take a 4-question quiz to let me know how you feel!) It starts out scary and uncomfortable. I didn’t want to go to the psychiatric hospital. I didn’t want to be there. I was already suicidal, and here I … Continue reading
Emily K Harrington, Author and Advocate The best way to get someone into inpatient treatment (while not always possible), is to have a nonjudgmental and open dialogue with the person that you are trying to help. Most people do not … Continue reading
When you are alone and in crisis, the crushing loneliness you feel is overwhelming. Wanting to talk to someone you love about your thoughts and feelings is natural, but it’s also unfortunately not always an option. In these situations, you … Continue reading
All people on the internet can do for you is to listen and respond. We can offer our support through words and remind you that you are not alone. We will be here in the middle of the night. We … Continue reading
Yesterday in therapy I told the story of the last days with Sophie and my first days of incapacitating mental illness, just before I was officially diagnosed. I was surprised at how upset I became in therapy, and by the … Continue reading
It can be excellent for people with the same mental illness to be around each other or be friends. This is beneficial is because those two people will have something in common that most people are not familiar with. … Continue reading
Dealing with mental illness has been a beast from the beginning. In 2006, Bipolar II Disorder first presented in my brain. It is typical for a person to develop bipolar between the ages of 18-23 because the brain continues to … Continue reading
The truly tempting thing about suicide is that it’s a solution to pretty much everything. Not a constructive solution or a solution other people want you to use, but still a solution. We can opt out. Once you realize you’re strong enough to end your own life, that knowledge will never go away. When you’re happy and engaged in life, that knowledge makes your life better because of the profound meaning there is to be found in the awareness of death and the empowerment of choosing to live. But when you’re feeling awful and you get to feeling awful enough that you think you’d do anything to change the way you feel, the knowledge that you could kill yourself becomes lethally dangerous.
Suicidal ideation is a very dangerous symptom. It can be caused situationally or purely chemically; by life events or medicine and chemical imbalance. If you’re experiencing suicidal ideation, it can be tremendously difficult to ask for help. If you’re past ideation and you’re fully suicidal, seize any moment of doubt in your plan that you find and TELL SOMEONE. There are way worse things than going to a hospital. If you’re strong enough to kill yourself, you’re definitely strong enough for a 3-day hold. Sometimes those three days is all it takes to restart your life. You see a psychiatrist and a therapist, and they prescribe medicine and evaluate you during your stay to make sure the medicine is working and you are safe from self-harm. You go to the hospital to get better.
I’ve had two failed suicide attempts and three psychiatric hospital stays. The first attempt Continue reading
When I was eighteen, I felt on top of the world. I had won several contests for my singing, graduated in the top five percent of my high school class, and been accepted to the most prestigious voice program in the United States. When fall rolled around, I trotted off to Oberlin Conservatory to begin my adult life. It was glorious for a while: the people were socially advanced and forward-thinking, there was a free exchange of exciting ideas, everyone was friendly and smart, and there was world-class music surrounding me everywhere I went. My first two months there were the happiest I’ve ever been… Continue reading
This is the best time in the history of the world to be mentally ill. We have psychiatrists, drugs, psychologists, scientific researchers, therapists, hospitals, and we are working toward public knowledge of mental health as a legitimate concern. Many people … Continue reading