08.12.14

THE M WORD

“No Matter What People Tell You
Words & Ideas Can Change the World.”
–Robin Williams

I had an outfit post I was planning on posting today but my heart felt I needed to say more.  As you may be aware Robin Williams was sadly reported deceased as of yesterday due to an apparent suicide as a result of asphyxia.  Death of a loved one, no matter how close, can often be one of life’s most stressful events. This tragic loss surfaces not only a million devastating emotions but also a topic most of us often fear discussing: Mental Illness.  It’s time we break the silence. Mental illness doesn’t discriminate against age, race, sex or even social status, it can happen to any one, including the remarkable Robin Williams.  Today as we mourn his loss and remember memories we shared with him (we all know he was the coolest dad to every single one of us in Mrs. Doubtfire) lets also make this a day to recognize the apparent cause of death.

Mental illness can present so differently for each person who is experiencing it just like any other illness.  I think the number one reason why we fear it is because we often fail to understand it.  My passion has always been to help others and I feel if I didn’t say something I wasn’t standing up for what I truly believe in. Even if this blog post helps one person then my mission was served.  I remember one of my instructors would always start lecture asking, “Where is mental illness?” and we would all reply “Eveerywhere.” Then she would ask, “Who does mental health affect?” We would respond, “Everyone”.  This is the reality mental health is everywhere and everyone is affected.    

Today I want you to receive one message if you get nothing else from this post, suicide is real.  It is not selfish nor is it sinful, it was the only option for the person committing it.  Life can often feel overwhelming and challenging but when you couple that with mental illness it feels impossible.  Those struggling often feel to be more of a burden than a blessing and the feelings of self-hatred are so overwhelming the mind convinces them the only option is to escape it all.  Suicide is something we are all so afraid to bring up in fear of offending the other person but the truth is when you assess and identify an honest concern you could be saving a life.

It’s been a while since I’ve studied it and I can’t claim to be a professional in this area but what I do know is that I care.  If you are feeling depressed and feel like killing yourself is the only option I want you to know there are solutions to these feelings.  Mental illness can feel scary and overwhelming but the good news is that they all can be treated once addressed.  Today we pray that you Rest In Peace Robin Williams.  

I’m going to link some websites to educate yourselves or perhaps get connected with the support you or a loved one may require. The truth is that there is help and though we are never responsible for the loss of someone who has committed suicide there are signs we can look for and steps we can take to help prevent it.  Remember Mental health is everywhere and affects everybody.  

Canadian Mental Health Association
National Alliance of Mental Illness 

Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention

People do not die from suicide;
they die from sadness
~Anonymous

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