In the last few weeks I have been touched by three suicides. Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain and a student at one of our local high schools. Although I never watch the news, all three of these events came to me through Facebook. I felt I needed to use my blog to talk about mental illness.
I didn’t know this family but it prompted me to speak up. This teen has opened up a platform for us to help make others aware. We can find peace in this suffering if we help others. The sister of the student that committed suicide at the local high school wrote an eye opening post about her brother. She sets the record straight for all the stories being told incorrectly You can read that post here.
Anyone who says they are not affected by mental health issues I want to say to you loudly, “You are so wrong!!” Here is a short list of conditions covered under the name mental illness. Bipolar disease, eating disorders, postpartum depression, anxiety, depression, panic attacks, suicidal thoughts, body dysmorphic disorder, substance abuse, loneliness, schizophrenia, paranoia, phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder and many more. I’m unsure how someone could not be touched by one of these.
I personally suffered extreme postpartum depression for 24 hours when my baby was a few months old. The thoughts were terrifying and not of my own mind. I have felt mental illness myself. I have also suffered from anxiety and extreme panic attacks with unrealistic thoughts. I turned to professionals as well as to my faith to help me heal and be on guard for future events.
I would like to talk about the recent suicides because I feel all three of these people suffered a constant battle that they were unable to overcome. Each of these people were incredibly special people and children of God that had a purpose on this earth. A purpose we will never see fully realized.
As we see public figures suffer with mental illness we would hope it would open our eyes to know this is a very serious problem we need to all help with. Someone may be suffering in silence next to you. You may be too absorbed in social media or with texting to recognize someone needs help right next to you. This is not your fault, this is how we have become with electronics in our lives.
I have posted in the past that myself and several of my good friends sit on the LifePath Foundation board. http://www.lifepathfoundation.org. Our focus is mental health education and fundraising so all those suffering in our area can get treatment or help. Our mission statement is:
LifePath Systems Foundation is dedicated to raising funds and building a stronger community by ensuring access for all people who need services for intellectual and developmental delays, behavioral health and substance abuse issues.
We are striving this year to raise $100,000.00 for Mental Health First Aid. Mental Health First Aid is a training program that teaches members of the public how to help a person developing a mental health problem, experiencing a worsening of an existing mental health problem or in a mental health crisis. Like traditional first aid, Mental Health First Aid does not teach people to treat or diagnose mental health or substance use conditions. Instead, the training teaches people how to offer initial support until appropriate professional help is received or until the crisis resolves.
This program costs roughly $100 per person and we want to train 1,000 individuals at no cost for those wanting to take the training but may be limited by cost. A minimum group of 12 people can join together and reach out to LifePath Systems for a training date at any time and this is a great training option for many business and corporations that want to invest in their employees and enrich them with this knowledge. The sessions can be set up at your location or we can help find a church or non-descript place for the class. You can learn more about Mental Health First Aid at
I am blessed to have this opportunity to serve on this board and grateful services are available. If you need help, reach out to LifePath Systems for guidance. If you have a teen struggling please consider The Harbor at Chase Oaks Church. Shanda, the director loves and cares about each and every teen that attends. Their information is:
We all care and we all want to help. Even if you just help one person suffering find help that is all I ask from you. Care enough to make another’s life better. We all have an unique and special purpose here.
love, peace and my gratitude for you-LoLo