India’s Suicide Capital: Sikkim

See Author Article Here
By Diwash Gahatraj

Despite a booming economy, Sikkim has the highest suicide rate among all Indian states, second only to the Union Territory of Puducherry.

Gangtok: For Sukhrani Limbu of Sordung village, about 120 km from Gangtok, 29 May 2016, was just another usual day at work. But upon her return home, she found her eldest son, 30-year-old Aitey Singh Limbu, hanging from the ventilation shaft in his room.

Life somehow went on for the grieving mother. But then came 29 May 2018, when her third son, 27-year-old Aitey Hang Limbu, hanged himself from the same ventilation shaft in the same room.

“There was no suicide note, no signs of sickness… I am still clueless about what triggered their suicides,” Sukhrani says, fighting back the tears.

Sukhrani is not the only mother or family member in Sikkim who’s searching for answers. A National Crime Records Bureau study reported that the landlocked Himalayan state witnessed 241 suicides in 2015, 2.1 per cent of all the suicides in India that year.

But in terms of suicide rate in the last decade, Sikkim has the highest (37.5) among all states, and the second highest in the country after the Union Territory of Puducherry (43.2). Suicide rate is the number of suicides per one lakh population. According to the 2011 Census, Sikkim’s population was 610,577.

The West district, where Sukhrani lives, is Sikkim’s worst-affected region. Between 2008 and 2018, 278 cases of suicide were reported here.

Underbelly of the ‘golden state’

Sikkim joined the Indian republic in 1975, and has gradually become the poster child for development and a booming economy. Between 2004-05 and 2011-12, the state witnessed the highest net state domestic product in the country, and was the third richest state in India according to the 2015-16 Economic Survey.

In September 2018, Sikkim got its first airport at Pakyong near Gangtok, and in October, it was awarded by the United Nations for becoming the first state in the world to become 100 per cent organic. Literacy and cleanliness are high, and it’s often referred to as a ‘golden state’.

Yet, it has a sordid underbelly, which is manifesting itself in suicides and the questionable mental health condition of its residents. Regardless of age, gender, rural-urban divide, economic or health status, suicide looms everywhere.


Also read: What the history of foreign invasions tell us about suicides across India


A number of factors

“It would be very difficult, and even unfair, to pinpoint a particular reason for why Sikkimese people are turning suicidal. There are several factors: A long history of alcohol and drug abuse, unemployment, high aspirations, ignorance of mental health illnesses and changing family structures,” said Yumnam Suryajeevan, assistant professor of sociology at the Sikkim Manipal University.

Social worker Dr Satyadeep Chhetri adds three more factors — lack of socialisation, loneliness and high rates of adultery.

“Around 70 per cent of people who have committed suicide were loners — either they were separated couples, aged people living away from their children, or kids from broken families. There is no study to connect suicide with adultery or other factors, but many people have committed suicide due to marital discord,” Chettri said.

A case in point is that of a 12-year-old girl who committed suicide on 26 June 2017 because she longed for parental love.

The seventh grader from Timberbung village in West Sikkim used to live with her old grandparents after her parents drifted apart and started living with their respective lovers, said an investigating officer from Soreng police station.

Drugs and alcohol

Many Sikkimese youth are high on pharmaceutical drugs like Nitrosun 10mg, Spasmo Proxyvon (SP) and cough syrups like Corex and Phensedyl, which are smuggled into the state from the neighbouring Siliguri in West Bengal.

“Drug users are very vulnerable to suicide,” said Prashant Sharma, member of the Sikkim Drug User Forum.

Former drug user Robin Rai recalls trying to kill himself during one of his weak moments nine years ago. Rai, who works as a counsellor at a suicide helpline centre in Gangtok, said he gets numerous calls from drug users with suicidal tendencies.

The state’s climate, geographical location, and the easy availability of alcohol has made it vulnerable to alcohol abuse as well.

Sikkim’s history with alcohol dates back to 1954, when Sikkim Distilleries was set up in Rangpo to ensure quality liquor for its citizens at a reasonable price. The then Chogyal (king) agreed to give the company absolute monopoly for the manufacture of alcohol, on the condition that the government was given 47 per cent of its shares. The state earns considerable revenue every year from alcohol sales — in 2013-14, the figure stood at Rs 120.64 crore.

K.C. Nima, a public health activist, shared the story of Suresh (name changed), a 40-year-old chronic alcoholic who had attempted suicide twice.

“The Sikkim High Court had to order the state to provide rehabilitation for him. There are many such cases,” Nima said.

Charvi Jain, a Kolkata-based psychotherapist, said that dysfunctional families, loneliness and drug and alcohol abuse are all interconnected. “It can be a deadly cocktail for suicide,” she said.


Also read: Suicides high among married women: Crisis in Indian marriages or mental health stigma?


Unemployment

According to a report by the Labour Bureau of the Ministry of Labour & Employment, Sikkim has the second highest unemployment rate in India.

Prawesh Lama, guitarist for the popular local band Tribal Rain, said the rush for government jobs had something to do with it.

“The problem of educated unemployed youth is high here. Sikkimese youth focus only on government jobs. But such jobs are for just a few who have the ‘right’ contacts,” Lama said.

“People are not willing to compete in the private sector. In this struggle to grab a government job, many youth get frustrated-some fall victim to drug and alcohol abuse, while a few even lose the urge to live.”

Cultural stigma of mental illness

Historically, the rulers of Sikkim have had no record of suicidal deaths. However, according to local tribal myth, adultery in a past life could lead to unnatural deaths, said L. Khamdak, professor of Limbu cultural studies at Namchi Government College in South Sikkim.

Tshering Tamang, a shaman based in Pelling, West Sikkim, added: “Every person has a predestined time to live. If someone kills themselves before time, their soul turns into Sian (evil spirit).This Sian can take lives of other people known to him or her in the similar way. More suicides will take place till the spirit completes its life-circle.”

In Sikkimese religious practices, mental health is often misunderstood. People with serious mental health illness approach religious gurus and shamans rather than coming to a doctor, said a psychiatrist based in Geyzing, West Sikkim, who did not wish to be named.

What has the administration done?

Other than an unpublished study conducted by Sikkim University, the state government has done very little research on the issue. ThePrint repeatedly tried to contact state health minister Arjun Ghatani, health secretary Vishal Chauhan and other senior officials, and emailed them questionnaires on the issue. But the only official response was an email from the health department, acknowledging receipt and saying it would take time to reply to the questions, “as this is a government procedure”.

However, that’s not to say there haven’t been efforts to curb suicides. A senior health department officer said on the condition of anonymity that the state was trying its best to combat the growing problem.

“The Sikkim Mental Health programme is operational since 2011, and we are conducting many awareness campaigns across the state,” the officer said.

In 2015, a state-funded 24×7 suicide helpline centre (03592-2021111, 18003453225) equipped with trained counsellors was started from the psychiatric department of the Sir Thodup Namgyal Memorial Hospital in Gangtok. However, the centre has received just 182 genuine calls so far, because hardly anyone seems aware of it. There were no advertisements for this number in Gangtok or West Sikkim, and helpline head Dr Jigmee K. Topgay said the reason was a lack of funding for promotion.

Hardly any local psychiatrists or health department officials were willing to speak on record when contacted for this report, because when a few of them spoke to a national daily on this issue, they were transferred from Gangtok to far-flung regions of the state.

One exception was Dr Satish Rasaily, a psychiatrist who has worked closely in the past with the government on suicide awareness programmes.

“The state has done several suicide prevention campaigns in Gangtok,” he said.

But outside the state capital, the track record of awareness programmes gets a bit murky. On the one hand, health department officials claim they conduct regular camps, as do local government officials like Hemant Limbu, vice-president of the Darap village near Pelling.

“We have a conducted a community level awareness programme where doctors, psychiatrists and suicide counsellors from Gangtok visited our area on the occasion of World Mental Health Day on 10 October 2018,” Limbu said.

But on the other hand, people in many other villages in West Sikkim said such camps were a rarity.


Also read: One in every 3 women who commit suicide globally is an Indian


How to fix this problem

Parul Agarwal, a Siliguri-based counsellor and psychotherapist suggested that the Sikkim government should work on spreading awareness about mental health.

“Forming a team of well-trained counsellors and psychiatrists who can work at the grassroots level can be a good start. Regular workshops, seminars in schools and colleges and a compulsory HR policy on mental health awareness at workplaces can be helpful,” she said.

Among all the religious groups in the state, incidents of suicide are least among the Christian community, and that’s because of a conscious effort that others could emulate, said Father Moni Clement Lepcha of St Mary’s Catholic Church, Geyzing.

“We regularly hold conversation with our parish members. When we talk about our problems, it helps a lot in venting out,” he said.

Social worker Chhetri added: “We have to tap the emotional quotient of Sikkim’s citizens. We have to tackle this situation as a society. We need to be more open to talk to each other, create occasions to meet and socialise.”

How To Help A Friend Who’s Suicidal Without Sacrificing Your Own Mental Health

See Author Link Here

As of 2017, the United States alone saw an estimated 1.3 million suicide attempts. Needless to say, suicide, often misunderstood and stigmatized, is a desperately urgent issue in America—and not solely for the people battling it firsthand. Supporting a suicidal friend can be a taxing, often frightening, stressful, and heartbreaking experience. But, being the best support system possible requires you to put yourself and your own needs first.

Easier said than done, though. As any caring and thoughtful friend would be, you’re likely worried about the wellness and safety of the person who you suspect to be in crisis. This situation can lead to bouts of self-doubt (“Am I doing and saying the right things?” or “Am I making things worse somehow?”), but Christine Moutier, MD, chief medical officer for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, says to trust your instincts. “Asking about suicide will not make someone suicidal if they do not already have those thoughts. Usually people feel relieved to share, especially if you are respectful and compassionate,” she says.

While you should open the lines of communication by asking your friend what they need, know what your own boundaries are, says Dese’Rae L. Stage, suicide awareness activist and creator of Live Through This. “If you’re not in a position where you can help, be honest. Say, ‘I’m not doing too well myself, but here’s a way we can find you help.” Going this route is not only best for you and your own sense of wellness, but it can also make you more approachable to your friend. “It shows how much you truly care about your friend and also allows you to be human and acknowledge you don’t have all the answers either,” says therapist Amanda E. White, MA, LPC, adding that this dialogue can come as a relief to someone who is suicidal, because so many people tend to walk on eggshells around them.

“If you’re not in a position where you can help, be honest. Say, ‘I’m not doing too well myself, but here’s a way we can find you help.” —Dese’Rae L. Stage, suicide awareness activist

Another option for helping your friend without sacrificing yourself is to call in additional support. Stage suggests tapping other friends, especially if you are in a tight-knit group, to make it a team effort of sorts. “Take shifts if you can,” Stage says. “See what [your friend] needs. Are they having trouble in their living space? Do they need help with laundry or dishes? Do they need someone to sit there and watch TV with them and order a pizza? Do they need to get out? [Helping with] things like that are good starters.”

If that arrangement—or any other, for that matter—doesn’t work for you, one thing that certainly can is honesty. Tell your friend you are there in the capacity you can be, whatever that may be, and that you love them. “Let them know they’re supported, even if you can’t necessarily be the one to do it,” Stage says. When you’re having this chat, or any conversation around suicide, it’s best to be direct, open, and a good listener. “People who are suicidal just need to be heard and validated. Even if you don’t agree with them, just say, ‘I hear you, and that sounds really hard.’”

“Focusing on your own health and wellness is important when you are trying to support someone in your life. If you are not well, you won’t be able to be a support to someone else who is struggling.” —Christine Moutier, MD

Dr. Moutier echoes that your time and attention alone can be a huge help. “Know that by simply caring and offering a listening ear and a feeling of support, you are providing them with everything a friend should.”

That said, you yourself may benefit from talking through this ordeal with someone who can guide, support, listen to you. “You are not alone—whether you’re the one struggling or the friend supporting them.” says Dr. Moutier, who says seeking therapy or support groups could be a smart avenue to explore for self-preservation. “Focusing on your own health and wellness is important when you are trying to support someone in your life. If you are not well, you won’t be able to be a support to someone else who is struggling.” In addition to seeking counseling for yourself, she recommends getting regular exercise, eating healthy foods, “and doing whatever you can do reduce your own stress.”

To be your best self—for the sake of your own well-being and ability to be source of support for a friend in crisis—you must always take care of yourself. And doing so, White says, is anything but selfish. “The most important thing is to make sure you are spending time with people who empower you and provide you with energy and love.”

If you or someone you love is suicidal, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8755 or visit suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

UK Appoints First World Minister For Suicide Prevention

See Fox 17 Article Here

British Prime Minister Theresa May has appointed what is thought to be the world’s first minister for suicide prevention.

The move, intended to tackle the tragedy of 4,500 people taking their own lives in England each year, comes on World Mental Health Day.

Jackie Doyle-Price, a Conservative MP and current health minister, has been appointed to lead the government’s efforts to confront the issue, which is the leading cause of death in men aged under 45.

The new role will head up a ministerial taskforce, working with experts in suicide and self-harm prevention, charities, clinicians and those personally affected by suicide.

May said: “We can end the stigma that has forced too many to suffer in silence. We can prevent the tragedy of suicide taking too many lives.”

Doyle-Price, in her new role as minister for mental health, inequalities and suicide prevention, said: “In my time as health minister I have met many people who have been bereaved by suicide and their stories of pain and loss will stay with me for a long time.

“It’s these people who need to be at the heart of what we do and I welcome this opportunity to work closely with them, as well as experts, to oversee a cross-government suicide prevention plan, making their sure their views are always heard.”

May has also pledged more support for mental health services for children and young people, as well as funding for the Samaritans’ helpline — a confidential 24/7 freephone service.

Royal support

The measures come as London hosts the first ever Global Ministerial Mental Health Summit, organized together with the OECD and supported by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Tuesday’s opening session was attended by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who previously launched the Heads Together mental health campaign with Prince Harry. Organizations, ministers and representatives from more than 50 countries will continue to discuss the many issues surrounding mental health in the capital today.

They are likely to debate the findings of a new report from WHO, which states that mental health should be explicitly included in global policy as mental health problems kill more young people than any other cause worldwide.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death globally for young peope aged between 15 and 19, according to the report, which also suggested there is little difference reported in mental health services and support between countries of low and middle average incomes and those of high incomes.

Mental health disorders have “dramatically risen” around the world in the last 25 years, according to Dr. Pattel of Harvard University, who presented his findings in The Lancet and described the global mental health situation as “extremely bleak.”

May’s announcement comes a day after the National Audit Office said the UK government may be “even further away than it thought” from achieving its goal of equal access to physical and mental health services for young people.

While the UK’s move was welcomed, critics blamed shortfalls affecting mental health services on the government’s austerity drive.

Barbara Keeley, mental health spokeswoman for the opposition Labour Party, told the Press Association: “A focus on suicide prevention is long overdue given the appalling increase in suicide rates since 2010, particularly among young people, but it also needs proper funding of front line services.

“Mental health services are still being underfunded by the Conservative government.”

TRADEMARK AND COPYRIGHT 2019 CABLE NEWS NETWORK, INC., A TIME WARNER COMPANY. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

5 Possible Signs of Suicidal Intent to Watch For in Your Loved Ones to Save a Life

See Author Article Here
There’s nothing more heartbreaking than Pknowing a loved one feels that death is the only way to solve their difficulties in life.

People who commit suicide are often undergoing a tumultuous mental episode. Suicide is not, in fact, about truly desiring death, but about periods of depression so severe that death seems like the only way to escape the pain. They’d rather die than continue to suffer from the mental—and sometimes even physical—anguish that they’re dealing with.

The best way to help a loved one who is seems at risk is to help them seek out professional help, but it’s equally important to keep an eye out for those who are struggling silently. There are a number of warning signs that loved ones can keep an eye out for, that may indicate suicidal thoughts—and can help save a life.

If you see any of these warning signs exhibited in behavior from a friend or family member, do your best to reach out without any judgement. Provide a listening ear or a shoulder to lean on, and try to come prepared with resources and options for counseling or other professional services if possible.

According to the American Psychiatric Association, there are many psychiatric symptoms indicating a risk of suicide—so the image of a depressed, disheartened teen shut away in their room isn’t the only one that should come to mind. Just because a loved one isn’t refusing to get out of bed in the morning doesn’t mean that they aren’t in need of help.

Here are 5 general indicators to be aware of:

1. Self-Harming Behavior
One of the clearest warning signs that someone is battling with suicidal thoughts is evidence of self-harm.
(Shutterstock)
This may not always come in a clear form. Visible cutting is usually an easy-to-spot sign of self-harm, but it’s not always done as a cry for help. For some, actions like cutting or other forms of physical self-abuse are done in an attempt to distract from mental anguish by replacing it with a manageable, more distracting form of physical pain. If a loved one is trying to transfer their pain from their brains to their bodies, they may fear judgement more than the risk that self-harm can cause—and in those cases, the self-harm is often hidden.

Keep an eye out for anything that seems physically amiss. If a loved one starts to cover their body with sweaters and long pants, particularly if it seems out of character or season, or they seem to be concealing something, it may be time to have a talk about what’s causing the changes.

2. Anti-Social Attitudes
Suicidal thoughts and a decision to die may not mean that a loved one has stopped caring about others, but that doesn’t mean that they won’t withdraw from their families and friends as they contemplate the end of their lives.
(Shutterstock)
Depression can cause a myriad of mental distortions. As one author wrote, even the periods of time when the “fog lifted” made it difficult to tell whether their depressed state or uplifting state was their true reality; they never knew whether their depression was their mind lying to them or their cheerful periods were all just a ruse.

When a loved one is planning to commit suicide, they often stop spending time with others. That may be due to the exhaustion caused by their depression, but could also be their way of trying to ease the heartbreak that they know their death will cause others. Suicide, as described by patients with depression, isn’t wanting to die—rather, it’s not wanting to be alive anymore. So when someone starts to pull away, try to reach out and keep them engaged. Don’t let them forget about their will to live.

3. Violent Mood Swings
The chemical imbalances in the brain that cause severe depression and suicidal behavior can cause more than just feelings of hopelessness. In some cases, they can also cause periods of mania, so keep an eye out for extreme highs and lows.
(Shutterstock)
Most people associate depression with only anti-social attitudes and sad, withdrawn behavior, but manic-depressive disorders can be just as harmful to an individual’s mental state—and can often cause suicidal thoughts and behaviors when a loved one is experiencing a period of severe lows after experiencing great highs.

If a loved one seems to be acting out of character—spending a lot of money, taking risks you wouldn’t normally expect from them, or bouncing between ideas aggressively—and then going through periods of withdrawal in between, don’t simply assume they’re acting quirky. They could be dealing with manic depression, or they could simply be trying their best to pull themselves out of the depression by aggressively seeking out joy. The chemical imbalances that cause these behaviors aren’t something a loved one can overcome on their own, and they’ll need your help to identify the problem and seek professional help before they harm themselves.

4. Impulsive Actions
Be wary of impulsive choices when a loved one isn’t prone to those kinds of behaviors. There can be multiple reasons that a suicidal loved one starts to act impulsively. Sometimes, it is related to a manic episode, which is always a red flag.
Illustration (Pixabay)
Other times, though, it can be caused by the absence of fear that a suicidal individual experiences. They may want to spend their money before they die, or give someone a gift. They may want to experience things that they had always been too afraid to, or they may be desperately seeking out a way to feel happy again.

Whether a loved one is no longer afraid of consequences or trying to find their way out of the darkness, always keep an eye out for behaviors that appear to be out of the ordinary. If a meticulous planner starts to fly by the seat of their pants, it may be time to sit them down and talk.

5. Reckless Decision-Making

Illustration (Shutterstock)
If a loved one starts to drink a lot, take illegal drugs, or participate in other reckless or impulsive behaviors, keep in mind that this can be just as obvious a warning sign of suicidal thoughts as a mopey teenager or locked bedroom door.

There can be other factors that cause someone to behave recklessly, but there’s rarely a good reason behind this kind of change. Even if a loved one isn’t contemplating suicide, they’ll almost certainly benefit from hearing from you if they’re engaging in dangerous, reckless behaviors like this.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

Great Blogs For People With Mental Illness

Hi guys, so I wanted to compile a little collection of blogs out there that are about and/or for people with mental illness.

You can never have too many resources at your disposal.

12 Great Blogs for People With Depression

The Best Mental Health Bloggers You Need to Follow

8 Inspiring Blogs to Read Whenever You Feel Alone

Hope your Mondays were AMAAZING!

The Dangers Of High-Functioning Depression And Anxiety

Nicole Kordana on Living With High-Functioning Depression And Anxiety
Author Page Here

“It’s been 8 years since I was diagnosed with depression and 5 since I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety. For many people when I tell them, it comes as quite a shock. “Wow, you don’t seem depressed” or “I’ve never seen you panic about anything” is a rather common response. Reflecting on this, I can understand why it would come as a surprise. I graduated high school with above a 4.0 GPA because I loaded my schedule with Advanced Placement courses so I could get ahead in college.

I participated in sports, I volunteered, I had a job, and generally seemed to be doing pretty well. I was accepted into the colleges I applied to and started school in the fall, where I also excelled and became involved in many activities around me. I was functioning as a “normal” young adult, so how depressed or anxious could I be right?

My depression and anxiety seemed like a war going on inside my head, reeking havoc on my physical health and general outlook on life. You would never have known by looking at my grades, my endurance on the soccer field, my performance at work, or my interactions with peers. It was easy to go about my daily life and excel in public, my mind was too busy to be sad or nervous, but when I returned home I entered a different world.

I was inconceivably sad and overwhelmed reflecting on the day I had. I knew I had a list of things I needed to complete before I could fall asleep in good conscience, but I lacked all motivation to complete a single task. On the other hand, not completing anything made me irrationally fearful that I would not succeed. I was sitting in the shell of my body unable to do anything.

Do your homework. I can’t. If you don’t you’ll be a failure, you’ll never be accepted into a good college. I’m too tired to do anything tonight. If you don’t do anything tonight, your grades will plummet; your teacher will be disappointed with you.

I’d go back and forth with myself until I forced myself to agonizingly and poorly complete something.

The physical toll on my body was no less. My back hurt immensely, I experienced migraines frequently, my panic attacks made me feel like my heart was going to be ejected from my chest, and my outbursts of anger toward my family were uncontrollable. And despite my insisting “nothing was wrong” my mother took me to see a psychiatrist.

The psychiatrist informed me that I experienced high-functioning depression and anxiety, which is not uncommon, especially in teens and young adults. High-functioning illnesses are scary in the fact that its easy for people who experience them to convince themselves that everything is fine, that they are just going through a phase because every other aspect of their lives are relatively normal.

Due to the “normal” levels of functioning in people who experience high-functioning depression or anxiety (or both), these people often go undetected by themselves, family, friends, co-workers, even medical professionals, and therefore don’t receive the treatment they need. Prior to receiving treatment, I was excelling in my personal and academic life, which made me question: what was the point in seeking treatment at all?

Our society is becoming more aware and accepting of mental illnesses, yet it is too common that people put the symptoms of mental illnesses in a box. I want to be explicitly clear when I say mental illnesses affect each person differently, not one experience with mental illness is identical. From therapy to medication to natural remedies, many treatments exist to help people who have depression or anxiety — but not receiving treatment often worsens the issue.

Many mental illnesses are invisible ailments, and high-functioning illnesses can often be silent, but that doesn’t mean they are not felt. We often hear that the people who fall victim to suicide “led perfectly normal lives” or their friends “had no idea they were sad enough to feel suicide was their only escape.”

Seeking treatment is not only a preventative measure to ensure symptoms don’t further progress; it is a proactive way to better your quality of life. As cliché as it sounds, with some simple ways to be proactive about your mental health, managing depression and anxiety is 100 percent attainable.

If you or someone you know experiences depression, anxiety, or a combination of both here are some ways to be proactive about your health and some important tips for when you are feeling low.

1. Know your body.

There are typically warning signs – bold or subtle changes- of when you are about to experience a little more of a struggle with your mental illness. Pay attention to these changes so you can take preemptive measures against your symptoms.

2. Have a solid support network.

Struggling with depression or anxiety is not something to be ashamed of. Millions of people are experiencing the same thing as you. Lean on people who can relate to what you are feeling, or find someone you trust that you are comfortable explaining your situation to. It’s good to have someone you can call, text, or talk to when you need a quick pick me up.

3. Give yourself some well-deserved attention.

Pamper yourself a little sometimes. You work really hard in your daily life and you manage your mental illness, appreciate yourself. It’s okay to have an extra helping of ice cream, buy those concert tickets, or just plain old relax for an afternoon. If you don’t take care of yourself, how are you expected to be able to perform at your best?

4. Exercise and eat right.

I’m sure you’ve heard it a million times but it is a miracle what eating right and some exercise can do for your body. I love to think of the mantra “feel good, do good” because it’s true; the better you feel the happier you behave. When you feel good it is reflected by how the people around you behave and leads to positive reinforcement.

5. Discover a hobby.

Finding an activity or hobby that you really enjoy can serve as a very positive distraction for negative things, and a mood boost for when you’re feeling above average. Find a group of people

6. Five sense distraction.

If you are in a public place and feeling overwhelmed, you can use the five sense method to calm down. Focus and examine: 5 things you can see, 4 you can touch, 3 you can hear, 2 you can smell, and 1 taste. Try to breathe through your nose as you complete this task and you will feel relieved in no time!

7. Don’t give up.

Treatments are typically not a quick fix, they take time, and yes a little energy. But the outcome is well worth it. Don’t give up on your treatment plan, on the people supporting you, or yourself. You are a powerful, resilient individual.

You can do this.

I love how relatable her story is. Don’t wait until it’s too late. It took me tying to kill myself to realize I was struggling

5 tips for becoming a successful blogger in 2019

Tips & Original Post Here

Being a blogger is easy, all you need to do is start a new blog and start writing.

But have you ever thought what is takes to become a successful blogger?

How bloggers make thousand of dollars every month, well the answers in dedication, passion and most important they are serious about blogging.

Lots of people try to earn money online but very few get success.

One of the best ways of earning online is blogging, blogging is one of the best career opportunity these days.

Blogging needs lots of hard work, research and long working hours. But one thing came into my mind can everyone get success in blogging.

If yes, why still many bloggers fail and give up their blogging.

Why many blogs get into parked page after a year and many people don’t even bother renewing their blog?.

The answer is lack of passion and motivation.

What it takes to becoming a successful blogger.

1. You have writing skills:- If you have great writing skills, you can become a successful blogger. Writing is the basic skill for becoming a blogger. Your blog readership will depend on how good your writing skill are. When I’m talking about writing, it doesn’t mean writing like an expert, but write like an individual. As they are different. See the editorial page of a newspaper or a magazine and that the exact kind of writing which I’m talking about.

2. You are disciplined:- Although every work or profession needs to be disciplined but as a blogger when you work from home or cafes, discipline is your best friend. It should divided into writing post, commenting on other blogs and social networking promotion. If you want loyal readers, then you have to post regularly, then you will lose your readers.

3. You are willing to learn :- A blogger should always be ready to learn. I’m still learning. I read a lot of other blogs to gain more knowledge. Mostly bloggers share their experiences so that other can learn from them.

4. You are good communicator :- you become a successful blogger if you are a good communicator. Some people think that a blogger ‘s work is over after writing an article. A blogger promote that article on social media networksite and reply to all the comments.

5. You are willing to work hard :- We have discussed earlier that hard work is the basis for becoming the successful blogger. A blogger has to work day and night to find new ideas.

The Pain Will End, But You Will Not

*just keep swimming*
^Reblogged from

When people talk about mental illness, they always say people who are struggling need to reach out, but when you are struggling, reaching out can feel impossible. Reaching out can be the last thing you want to do.

There is an expectation that when someone is struggling with self-harm, suicidal thoughts, etc., it is their responsibility to reach out and tell someone.

But what happens when you’ve reached out time and time again, only to be met with criticism? What happens when you’ve reached out time and time again, only to be met with fear? Only to be met with anger or misunderstanding? What happens when reaching out isn’t helpful?

Telling someone about your struggles is difficult. You never know what reaction someone is going to have, and when you’ve had a negative reaction before, reaching out again seems even more difficult than before. It feels like a risk.

When you reach out to someone and don’t receive the help you need, remember these things:

You are important.

You are worth it.

No one is perfect.

Sometimes, people do not understand what you are going through. You will not always be met with perfect responses. People may make you feel broken or like a burden, but you are not. People might make you feel guilty for feeling what you feel, but you are only a human being.

Someone else’s inability to be there for you in a healthy way does not mean you are not worth it or cared for.

Needing to be reminded of your worth is okay. Needing to have someone hold your hand on the hard nights is okay. Needing people is okay.

Having needs is okay.

You are in a fight that feels like it’s never going to end, but it will.

Rain stops.

Snow melts.

Mountains crumble.

Walls can be broken down.

The pain will end, but you will not.

Read This If You Find Yourself Confronting Narcissistic Abuse

*Warning: If you’re experiencing physical abuse, expect it to continue or escalate. Get help immediately.

Narcissist Assh*oles
^Reblogged from here

We’re all capable of abuse when we’re frustrated or hurt. We may be guilty of criticizing, judging, withholding, and controlling, but some abusers, including narcissists, take abuse to a different level. Narcissistic Abuse can be physical, mental, emotional, sexual, financial, and/or spiritual. Some types of emotional abuse are not easy to spot, including manipulation. It can include emotional blackmail, using threats and intimidation to exercise control. Narcissists are masters of verbal abuse and manipulation. They can go so far as to make you doubt your own perceptions.

The Motivation for Narcissistic Abuse

Remember that narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) and abuse exist on a continuum, ranging from silence to violence. Rarely will a narcissist take responsibility for his or her behavior. Generally, they deny their actions and augment the abuse by blaming the victim. Particularly, malignant narcissists aren’t bothered by guilt. They can be sadistic and take pleasure in inflicting pain. They can be so competitive and unprincipled that they engage in anti-social behavior.

The objective of abuse is power. Narcissists may intentionally diminish or hurt other people. It’s important to remember that narcissistic abuse stems from insecurity and is designed to dominate you. Abusers’ goals are to increase their control and authority while creating doubt, shame, and dependency on their victims. They want to feel superior to avoid hidden feelings of inferiority. Understanding this can empower you. Like all bullies, despite their defenses of rage, arrogance, and self-inflation, they suffer from shame. Appearing weak and humiliated is their biggest fear. Knowing this, it’s essential not to take personally the words and actions of an abuser. This enables you to confront narcissistic abuse.

Mistakes in Dealing with Abuse

When you forget an abuser’s motives, you may naturally react in some of these ineffective ways:

Appeasement. If you placate to avoid conflict and anger, it empowers the abuser, who sees it as weakness and an opportunity to exert more control.

Pleading. This also shows weakness, which narcissists despise in themselves and others. They may react dismissively with contempt or disgust.

Withdrawal. This is a good temporary tactic to collect your thoughts and emotions but is not an effective strategy to deal with abuse.

Arguing and Fighting. Arguing over the facts wastes your energy. Most abusers aren’t interested in the facts, but only in justifying their position and being right. Verbal arguments can quickly escalate to fights that drain and damage you. Nothing is gained. You lose and can end up feeling more victimized, hurt, and hopeless.

Explaining and Defending. Anything beyond a simple denial of a false accusation leaves you open to more abuse. When you address the content of what is being said and explain and defend your position, you endorse an abuser’s right to judge, approve, or abuse you. Your reaction sends this message: “You have power over my self-esteem. You have the right to approve or disapprove of me. You’re entitled to be my judge.”

Seeking Understanding. This can drive your behavior if you desperately want to be understood. It’s based on the false hope that a narcissist is interested in understanding you, while a narcissist is only interested in winning a conflict and having the superior position. Depending upon the degree of narcissism, sharing your feelings may also expose you to more hurt or manipulation. It’s better to share your feelings with someone safe who cares about them.

Criticizing and Complaining. Although they may act tough, because abusers are basically insecure, inside they’re fragile. They can dish it, but can’t take it. Complaining or criticizing an abuser can provoke rage and vindictiveness.

Threats. Making threats can lead to retaliation or backfire if you don’t carry them out. Never make a threat you’re not ready to enforce. Boundaries with direct consequences are more effective.

Denial. Don’t fall into the trap of denial by excusing, minimizing, or rationalizing abuse. And don’t fantasize that it will go away or improve at some future time. The longer it goes on, the more it grows, and the weaker you can become.

Self–Blame. Don’t blame yourself for an abuser’s actions and try harder to be perfect. This is a delusion. You can’t cause anyone to abuse you. You’re only responsible for your own behavior. You will never be perfect enough for an abuser to stop their behavior, which stems from their insecurities, not you.

Confronting Abuse Effectively

Allowing abuse damages your self-esteem. Thus, it’s important to confront it. That doesn’t mean to fight and argue. It means standing your ground and speaking up for yourself clearly and calmly and having boundaries to protect your mind, emotions, and body. Before you set boundaries, you must:

Know Your Rights. You must feel entitled to be treated with respect and that you have specific rights, such as the right to your feelings, the right not to have sex if you decline, a right to privacy, a right not to be yelled at, touched, or disrespected. If you’ve been abused for a long time (or as a child), your self-esteem likely has been diminished. You may no longer trust yourself or have confidence. Seek therapy, get support.

Be Assertive. This takes learning and practice to avoid being passive or aggressive. Try these short-term responses to dealing with verbal putdowns:

“I’ll think about it.”

“I’ll never be the good enough wife (husband) that you hoped for.”

“I don’t like it when you criticize me. Please stop.” (Then walk away)

“That’s your opinion. I disagree, (or) I don’t see it that way.”

“You’re saying . . .” (Repeat what was said. Add, “Oh, I see.”)

“I won’t to talk to you when you (describe abuse, e.g. “belittle me”). Then leave.

Agree to part that’s true. “Yes, I burned the dinner.” Ignore “You’re a rotten cook.”

Humor – “You’re very cute when you get annoyed.”

Be Strategic. Know what you want specifically, what the narcissist wants, what your limits are, and where you have power in the relationship. You’re dealing with someone highly defensive with a personality disorder. There are specific strategies to having an impact.

Set Boundaries. Boundaries are rules that govern the way you want to be treated. People will treat you the way you allow them to. You must know what your boundaries are before you can communicate them. This means getting in touch with your feelings, listening to your body, knowing your rights, and learning assertiveness. They must be explicit. Don’t hint or expect people to read your mind.

Have Consequences. After setting boundaries, if they’re ignored, it’s important to communicate and invoke consequences. These are not threats, but actions you take to protect yourself or meet your needs.

Be Educative. Research shows that narcissists have neurological deficits that affect their interpersonal reactions. You’re best approach is to educate a narcissist like a child. Explain the impact of their behavior and provide incentives and encouragement for different behavior. This may involve communicating consequences. It requires planning what you’re going to say without being emotional.

Get Support

To respond effectively requires support. Without it, you may languish in self-doubt and succumb to abusive disinformation and denigration. It’s challenging to change your reactions, let alone those of anyone else. Expect pushback when you stand up for yourself. This is another reason why support is essential. You will need courage and consistency. Whether or not the narcissist makes changes, you’ll get tools to protect yourself and raise your self-worth that will improve how you feel whether you stay or leave. CoDA meetings and psychotherapy provide guidance and support.

04 Snowboarding & Suicide Series: Emotions After A Failed Suicide Attempt

“I didn’t want to kill myself. I wanted to make it all stop and go away. I wanted to be calm”

Trying to kill yourself & failing due to chance doesn’t leave the best taste in your mouth, to put it lightly. Your mind is one big shitstorm and you have no safe haven.

I was not happy.
I was not grateful.
I did not regret what I did.
I did not really give a shit.

I was …sort of pissed. Resentful may be a better word, and not at my boyfriend for walking in, just at the whole situation. I still did not feel any type of fear or just like whatthefuckdidijustdo emotion, and while I had no regrets other than:

1. Not leaving any information on why I killed myself. No one really knew how depressed I was, or that I even was depressed. I have a lot of people I love that deserve to know how much I loved them and how sorry I was for causing them pain.
2. Not waiting until my boyfriend was asleep to do it.

While I didn’t ACTUALLY feel any sort of desire to help myself and try to get it together, the rational side of me knew that unless I sought out some resource outside of my immediate surroundings.

I had promised myself I was not going to involve my family because I did not want to stress them out if they did not have to be – but I knew that my lack of fucks to give about almost dying was not good and so here enters my dad.

I have the best dad in the world. His sister, my aunt, killed herself when I was 12 and it destroyed me. This was one of her attempts that had worked. My poor aunt Maggi was not found until she started to smell. It took two weeks of her hanging there.

I tried to email her after I found out (we frequently talked via email) to see if maybe she would respond. Surprise, she didn’t.

My dad flew out and was extremely supportive, I felt good when he was visiting. Two days after he left, I was once again staring down at a handful of pills. This time, my boyfriend WAS asleep. I could finally be free…

I didn’t do it. Obviously, I am here writing this . It is a whole fucked up journey to getting to be able to write something as inconsequential as this one post takes a lot of time to try to get out. It took almost 2 months of antidepressants to be able to get anything out at all.

I think that my resentment was because once you resolve yourself to die, feeling “forced” to live seems like a pretty dick move by the universe. You have no will, motivation, or aspirations. I felt compelled to live solely by the fact that people were aware of the first attempt, and I hated it.

But, I used the feeling of being pressured to live to my advantage & I figured that if I told a few of my extremely close friends, and some members of my family, I would feel more accountable if I had any future desires to kill myself. It sucked, but I did it. I only had to wait two more weeks to tell my psychiatrist & get on a treatment regimen.

PHEW. This was exhausting to write. I hope it helps some people, and once again, these are MY feelings and no one should feel as though their feelings after a failed suicide attempt should be the same as mine.

I’d love to hear some of the stories that other people who have tried t kill themselves and survive have, if anyone feels comfortable.

Always here to help. Text 503.216.4223 or comment