This powerful video was shared to my Facebook page. Its images triggered some painful emotions, but the message is clear. People who have been through the battle of depression and survived know that hope is waiting on the other side. Whether you find it in faith or somewhere else, hope is waiting for you. Please don't kill yourself!
When my sister was critically injured in a high speed car accident, I didn't think things could get any worse. I held her hand in the ICU on our first Father's Day without our dad, and I thanked God for saving her life. I wasn't prepared for old family wounds to resurface and inflict their pain...but resurface they did.
I won't go into detail, but I will tell you what I've learned from watching my family and others. Families tend to orbit around one another. Sometimes they take turns orbiting around each member. Sometimes they just orbit around one family member.
Families that orbit around one family member tend to orbit around their "favored" member or their "problem" member. In each instance, they can be so focused on the one who's pulled them in, they are unaware of what's happening with the others outside of their immediate concern.
If you feel as if you are standing outside of your family's circle, my heart goes out to you. Please realize you are just as worthy of their attention and love as the family member they are focused on, but they may not be able to show it to you. Let go of that expectation. The gravitational pull of the situation may be too strong to expect a break in family patterns. Family attention and approval does not make you more worthy. You are worthy from being the person God created you to be.
Be that person. Forgive your family for their humanness and set boundaries if you need to do so. Then go live. Love on others the best way you can and forgive yourself if you get pulled into an orbit of your own. Life is too fragile and short to hold grudges against others and ourselves. Go do. Go be. Go live.
Many people, after the deaths of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade, are asking each other how such successful people could commit suicide. What could they possibly have been depressed about? Even Anthony Bourdain's mother is questioning his decision. “He had everything. Success beyond his wildest dreams. Money beyond his wildest dreams..."
You might think that success, wealth, and adoring fans could protect you from pain, but they can't. Pain is sneaky, and it will always find a way into someone's life, even if that someone is highly talented and successful.
That's where the problem lies. Pain hides in the shadows, so when we catch glimpses of other people's lives, we often can't see it. We see only what's thrust into the light, and we believe our lives should be just as happy. Then when they aren't, we get worried and discouraged.
Anthony and Kate must have been feeling very discouraged to do what they did. It's too bad they never realized the number of people who would have reached out to help them. Maybe then they wouldn't have chosen the wrong solution for their pain.
Suicide wasn't the solution for their pain. It never is.
Depression likes to lie and tell you that there is no way you can overcome the pain you are feeling in the moment. But it is wrong. Do you know how you can overcome the pain? Look at this picture.
I don't know if you've watched the movie "13 Reasons Why," but here is a scene that shows why suicide is not the answer...13 reasons why...13 people coming together and helping each other get through the moment.
There will always be people who will come alongside and help you through the pain. Always.
All you have to do is let someone know you are struggling. Then you need to believe what they tell you.
You are loved and needed.
You are not a burden.
You will get through this pain.
Pain is not a death sentence. It's a warning that it's time to reach out.
Suicide Prevention Lifeline (24 Hours) tel:1-800-273-8255
"Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself." Coco Chanel
After months of researching bullying and trying to write a story for the victims, I've come to a firm realization: You have a better chance of getting through life if you have a tribe of people who support you.
Life can be downright messy at times, and we're all going to have those days--
Days where our hearts will be hurt by people we care about.
Days we don't think we have the energy to face.
Days that feel as if we've been dragged through the streets behind a large truck.
During those times we need to reach out and talk to people. We need to find people who will speak words of life and hope into our mess. This is the crucial part.
It's easy to find people who will commiserate with us—grumble and complain whenever we need someone to join us in our misery. It's much harder to find people who will support us in our healing. If you have someone in your life who speaks truth and encouragement over you, hold onto them. Be open to them. Listen to them.
I don't know where I'd be without my tribe. Whenever I'm having "a day," these ladies are a text away. Their words bring comfort and help. I've learned from their advice, and I've cherished their visits to support me. I'm the woman I am today because of the love they've poured into my life.
That's what tribes do—they pour into our lives and help us become stronger.
Teens Finding Hope has some exciting news. We are hosting our first Mental Health Conference next September! We are beyond excited to provide you with the resources and community you'll need for a successful year. Not only will you be able to hear from some experts and get your questions answered, but you will also be able to gather an array of resources and freebies.
Among those freebies will be our new book, The Making of Brave, which deals with the subject of bullying.
In this book, a high school senior named Maddy has everything going for her. She earns good grades, is a member of
the cheerleading squad, and is on her way to earning a scholarship for college. Everything is working out perfectly....until her best friend betrays her. Devastated by her naked picture being sent to classmates, and traumatized by the bullying that follows, Maddy finds herself on a journey to survive. Somehow she must find a way to stop the abuse and stand up for herself.
We hope you will be able to join us next Fall. Until then, stay strong and remember: You are not alone.
It sounds too good to be true, doesn't it? Thinking our way to health? Yet, that's just what recent studies show. Our thoughts are so powerful they can effect our minds, our biology, and even our environments.
New research shows our thoughts have a direct affect on our biology. According to a leading cellular biologist, Bruce Lipton, "Our minds will adjust our body's biology and behavior to fit with our beliefs." In other words, the more self-critical we are, the more our subconscious minds will work to convince us of our limitations and unworthiness.
On the flip side, the more we think positively about ourselves, the more our subconscious will work to bring about a positive change to our biology and behavior.
We may not have much control over our subconscious mind, but we do have control over the thoughts we feed it. Unfortunately, positive thinking doesn't just happen. It's something we have to do on purpose. It may feel funny and a little awkward at first talking kindly to ourselves, but it will make a huge difference in our lives. Still Skeptical?
Just look at this research done by Dr. Emoto on the power of words:
People think depression is sadness. People think that depression is dressing in black. People think that it is all in your head. But I am here to say to all of these people that they are wrong.
Depression is much more than that. It goes way deeper— to drowning in your own tears— to waking up in the morning— to wanting to go back to bed and never wake back up again. It is always more than you think.
#depression, #sadness, #deeper
A good friend told me that female elephants circle around other elephants when they need support. The elephants will gather around their friend and then turn their bodies so their tusks face outward. Creating a circle, they will make an impenetrable wall that provides support and protection for their vulnerable friend.
All of us need a circle of friends who gather around us when we're vulnerable. Will you be that person for someone else? Will you create a circle around your friend and help them be brave when their world becomes a threatening place? Will you be brave and advocate for your friend? On the flip side, when you're feeling vulnerable, will you speak of your distress so your friends can create a circle around you? Will you let them fight for you and encourage you?
It's time we redefined what bravery looks like. Being brave should not be an individual endeavor. Being brave should come from being in a community. It should come from people stopping to link their arms in ours and help us to the finish line. It should come from friends surrounding us when we're hurting.
Instead of surviving life alone, let's start circling around one another. It's easier to navigate life when we have people around to help us. Let's be brave together.
We find ourselves together,
Each one bearing the scars from our battles.
—Who refuse to give up.
—Who face our fears bravely and lend our strength when someone needs it.
We turn with open arms to those who are hurting and say,
"You are welcome here."
For we know the beauty in a person is found deep beneath their surface.
We listen when you vent
laugh when you joke
comfort when you cry
and walk a mile in your shoes every day if it means it will help you
We've learned the pain of carrying secrets in our wounds is no match
for the hope we can find in the acceptance from another
So we reach out to one another--
in coffee shops and hallways,
neighborhoods and blog posts,
bravely baring our souls and telling our stories
For we are warriors
Who know the bravest thing we can do
is open our weaknesses to the scrutiny of another so all can find healing.
We come without judgement.
We come with our scars.
We come as we are.
"You are welcome here."
- Get Help Now