Don’t Give Up and Commit Suicide: Check Your Physical Health

By PeggySue Wells:

Thinking you should give up and commit suicide? Know that suicidal feelings may be caused by physical problems that can be corrected.

Nutrition can play a big part in your mental health.

 

Image: Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Here at our site we discuss many different causes of depression. However, it’s important to know that deep feelings of hopelessness and depression may be the result of a physical condition that is simple and easy to treat.

For instance, if you are missing magnesium in your body, this imbalance can be detrimental to your emotional state. Likewise, being too low in vitamin D, B, or iron can cause depression. There are many videos and articles describing some success in treating depression with B3 (niacin), so that is worth researching.

Other indicators include hormones, thyroid, and serotonin levels dropping below what your health requires.

The good news is each of these conditions is simple to treat. Before you do something extreme, go to the doctor. Tell the doctor how you feel. A blood test will quickly reveal any lack in your system and you can begin rebuilding healthy levels immediately.

The way our bodies work, physical condition does affect emotional and mental health.

If you are feeling down, if you are asking yourself ‘should I give up and commit suicide’ go to the doctor. Make that appointment now.

Depressed? Let the Good In.

By Martha Bolton:

Are you feeling depressed? Let the good in. Open the door and let the light shine into your weary and sad soul.

 

Image: digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’m not sure what it is about human nature that makes our negative memories or disappointments loom so much bigger than all the good moments in our lives.

But during those times when we’re feeling down, that’s exactly what happens, isn’t it?

We have difficulty remembering the good days, the happy times, words of encouragement that we’ve heard or read, the love we’ve been blessed with, and the laughter we’ve shared with others throughout our lives.

Everything seems so dark and murky; the good buried deep beneath that muddled mess of disappointments.

But it’s there.  Every memory you once cherished, every smile that was ever given in your direction, the love, the laughs, the “You can make it!” exhortations, the comments from total strangers, the compliments, the sacrifices made on your behalf (some you may not even realize or want to admit)—they’re all there.  Dig for them.  Look for them.  They’re worth finding.

Seeing the whole picture of your life can be healing, especially if you’ve only been looking at darkness lately.  It’s like living in a boarded up house with no light shining through anywhere.  The darkness is real, but so is the light.  It’s there, but it’s just been blocked out for a myriad of reasons for far too long.

Unblock it.  Allow the good of your life to seep in wherever it can.  Make a list of your good memories as you begin to recall them and post it on your refrigerator or wall.  Look at it often and add to it as other “good memory” events and people come to mind.

The truth of everyone’s life includes both bad and good.  None of us are exempt from bad or shielded from good.  Start giving the good in your life equal billing.

Open up a window and let some sunlight through.  You may find that one opened window will lead to the next one, and the next one, and before you know it, you’ll have opened up the door, too.  When you do, you might be surprised to see just how many people have been standing out there waiting for that moment, too.

Bullying Prevention Tips for Parents and Kids

By Linda Evans Shepherd:

For National Bullying Prevention Month we asked author Shannon Perry (with Master’s degree in education and counseling) some tough questions about bullying.

 

Image: David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

What do we need to teach our kids about bullying? What should a child do if they become a bully’s target or witness an act of bullying? And what do you do if you find out if it’s your child who is bullying others?

Shannon Perry offers some good bullying prevention tactics:

Linda:  Shannon, I’m glad, as you are a certified instructor in crisis counseling, that you’ve taken the time to talk with me about bullying.  Can you describe to me what the act of bullying actually is?

Shannon:  Bullying is a form of behavior used to negatively affect others where there is an “imbalance of power.” This “imbalance” may be perceived social or physical power and may be based on the grounds of race, gender, sexuality, religion or other perceived positions. Bullies like to dominate others and are very “self” focused. While some bullies believe they have the right to treat others as they choose, many bullies are simply insecure. Some bullies are victims of bullying themselves and others suffer from mental disorders and need psychiatric attention.

Linda:  As responsible adults, what can we do to help prevent bullying?

Shannon:  Teachers and parents have the responsibility to teach children how to recognize bullying and employ tactics to deal effectively with it. There are many steps that parents or educators can take as preventative measures for bullying:

  • Teach zero tolerance for any type of bullying behavior.
    • Show positive examples of acceptance of others via family time, the newspaper, magazines, tv, etc.
    • Discuss appropriate ways to handle/display anger.
    • Teach words of reconciliation and empathy such as “I’m sorry, please forgive me.”
    • Discuss movie scenes that involve bullying. As a family, discuss the appropriate behavior that should have taken place in bullying situations.

Linda:  If a child is being bullied by his peers, what steps can he take to stop the bullying?

Shannon:  Here are some practical things to do when confronted by a bully:

  • Hold your head up and look confident. Refrain from having a hurt or fearful look on your face.
  • Keep your arms to your side and stand confidently on both feet. Keep your hands out of your pockets; not folded or held up as if you want to fight.
  • Keep non-threatening eye contact with the bully.
  • Don’t run away unless you are in danger.
  • Don’t get physical with the bully or argue in return.
  • Do something that brings you confidence in your everyday life by developing a skill you are good at or taking a class.
  • Find good, true friends and share your pain with them once they can be trusted.
  • Tell trusted adults that you are being bullied. Talk to someone UNTIL YOU GET HELP! If the first adult does not take you seriously, keep going to adults until someone believes you and does something to help you.

Linda:  If a child realizes that his behavior toward others is bullying, how can they change their behavior?

Shannon:  Behavior modification starts at home with the parents. If you find out that your child is being a bully, stay calm and meet with the adults who have witnessed the behavior. Apply clear and significant consequences and require (and witness) your child to apologize to any he/she has offended. If necessary, “shadow” your child at school for a day. Go everywhere he/she goes and monitor behavior. Immediately reinforce positive behavior when your child does good and immediately seek professional help if the bullying behavior continues for an extended period of time.

Linda:  If a child’s peers are bullying a classmate, what is the best way for a student to stand up for the classmate without being bullied himself?

Shannon:  If you are a by-stander and see someone being bullied, you can also use the strategies listed above.  But, for example, if someone is being bullied about his hair, you can say something like, “I think his hair cut looks like Justin Bieber, and I wish my hair looked like his!”

Next, ask the victim to walk away with you.

Some counter-bullying tactics include getting a third party involved. For example, the victim may wish to confront the bully who has been spreading rumors about her. To do so, it would be wise to discuss this action with an adult then have others present when the interaction takes place.

 More About Shannon Perry  – Shannon is an author, recording artist, conference speaker and radio host who often tackles issues such as bullying. Her brand-new conference, “In Her Shoes,” is designed specifically for mothers and daughters, tackling issues such as bullying, self-esteem, body image, social media, dating as well as other topics affecting tween and teen girls. Shannon holds a Master’s Degree in Education and Counseling and is a Certified Instructor in Parenting Classes and Crisis Counseling. For more information visit www.ShannonPerry.com.

Suicidal? Ask for Help: Send Up a Flare!

By Martha Bolton:

Feeling suicidal? Or seriously depressed?  Do ask for help. Send up a flare!

Image from Wikipedia: Flares are sent up during military exercises so soldiers are prepared for when they must call for help.

If you had been hit by a car, you wouldn’t get up and limp along on broken legs, hoping bones would snap back into place, would you? Or  if suffering from internal bleeding, hope it would somehow stop on its own?

Of course not.

Some situations we go through in life can leave us feeling like we’ve been hit by a car, can’t they?  Or a train.

But just as we wouldn’t expect our bodies to heal on their own from a real car wreck, we can’t expect our emotions to heal on their own in the aftermath of life’s disappointments and calamities either.

If you’re injured, send up a flare.  Let someone know you’re hurting.

Help is available.

Call a hotline, a friend, your pastor, a counselor; call someone!  If you can’t reach your first choice, call the next one.  And the next.  Keep going until the right person for that moment in your life answers.

Even if you’re already getting help, but find yourself at an especially low point right now, speak up and tell someone.  If you were in the hospital after a car wreck, and the pain got too severe during the night, you’d ring for the nurse, right?  No matter what time it was, you’d let her know how badly you were feeling.

If it’s in the middle of your night, if the emotional pain is unbearable, pick up the phone and make a call.  Or walk into the next room and wake someone up.  Reach out to somebody.  Like injuries sustained in a car wreck, many emotional injuries can’t sufficiently heal without being attended to either.

So don’t limp along on your brokenness, hoping your emotions will heal on their own and then when they don’t, take matters into your own hands. Suicide isn’t the answer.

You’ve been wounded, perhaps deeply.  There’s no shame in asking for help for those wounds.  Don’t attempt to go it alone.  Wounds can heal. Broken hearts can mend.  Disappointments can turn around.  Pain can subside.  But the first step is to let someone know you’re bleeding.

Feeling suicidal?  Not sure who to call?

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), is a free, 24-hour hotline available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.

Lost a Loved One? A Grief Lesson on ‘Firsts’

This continues Dianne’s 10 Things I’ve Learned About Grief. Here she discusses the first year of ‘firsts’, as that can tempt some to think about suicide.

By Dianne E. Butts:

 

Image: renjith krishnan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

In 1850 Alfred Lord Tennyson, in his poem In Memoriam:27, wrote, “ ‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” But if you’ve lost a loved one, it may not feel that way, but instead may tempt you to think about suicide.

The first year after the death of a loved one is filled with many “firsts.” In my list of “10 Things I’ve Learned About Grief” (excerpted from my first book, Dear America), the sixth thing I’ve learned about grief is this:

 #6: During the first year, you will experience a lot of “firsts”—your first anniversary, first birthday, first Christmas, and other first holidays without your loved one. Other firsts may include the first time you go to the movies without your loved one, plan a trip by yourself, or dine solo. And, of course, there will come the first anniversary of your loved one’s death.

It’s hard for anyone to get through all these for the first time. And getting through them the first time does not take away all the pain or depression. You may feel grief on those anniversaries for many years to come.

I learned some people experience “anniversary grief”: feelings of sadness, depression, anxiety, or other emotions around the anniversary of the death. These may even be subconscious, as a feeling of sadness, anxiety, anger, or other emotion that you just can’t figure out why it is hovering over you.

For years I felt a vague sense of dread, like something bad was about to happen, around my birthday. I could not shake the feeling and did not understand it. I didn’t connect it with my brother’s death until a friend of mine explained “anniversary grief” to me. It was only two days after my 18th birthday that my brother was killed by a drunk driver. I’d had other traumatic events happen near my birthday when a younger teenager also, including when my parents announced their divorce and yet another year when my father was diagnosed with cancer and had major surgery.

While I hadn’t connected the dots, my subconscious had, and it left me with that feeling something dreadful was about to happen. You may experience a different feeling. These feelings can cause us to think about suicide.

When such an anniversary is approaching:

  • Try to anticipate times that will be difficult, like holidays.
  • Make plans to do something special.
  • Preferably do your special plans with friends, family, or other people around.
  • Holidays or personal anniversaries are no time to be alone.

Pastor Charles Stanley wrote a beautiful letter to grieving people on the tenth anniversary of September 11th:

We experience injustices at the hand of others who cause us overwhelming suffering. The pain gnaws at us and we wonder, Why God? Why did You allow these things to happen? Is there any hope left?

“Are you experiencing this kind of grief today? Has your world come crashing down due to another’s hurtful actions? Have you lost someone or something that is very precious to you? If so, I want to remind you that God is still on His throne…and He loves you unconditionally.”

You can read the rest of Pastor Charles Stanley’s letter here.

Seek out the comfort of friends and family. They love you and they need you, too. So don’t let the first year of firsts after the death of a loved one tempt you to think about suicide.

When you feel sad or are thinking about suicide, why not instead begin to think about things you are thankful for? God, also, has experienced pain and loss and He knows how it feels. Listen to this song with lots to thank God for: “I’ll Say Thanks” by God City:

Suicide Prevention in the Workplace

When losing a worker from suicide, an employer may feel shock, surprise and even guilt. What signs were missed?  Could increased awareness of employee struggles be an ingredient for suicide prevention?

By Karen O’Connor:

Image: nuttakit / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

My friend Arlette and her husband Dan ran a restaurant in Southern California for over twenty years. Each Monday morning they gathered their employees in a circle and asked each one to share a concern or a need so they could support one another with prayer and reassuring hugs.

Many of the couple’s employees remained with the company for ten years or more waiting tables and preparing meals. The owners credit this loyalty to the weekly practice of sharing and caring for one another.

“We let people talk out their feelings and needs so they could do their job without being weighed down emotionally.”

Imagine what would happen to the morale and longevity of employees at other companies, if more of them modeled this practice. I thought about this when I heard recently that one of my neighbor’s employees killed himself and no one seems to know why. Years ago an attorney in a friend’s legal firm did the same at home alone in the bathroom of his condominium.

Are employers to blame? Of course not, and yet such news is cause for alarm. Owners and managers surely ask themselves, as my lawyer friend did, if he could have done anything to stop his colleague from such a final act against himself.

None of us is fully responsible for the actions of another, But at the same time, those of us who employ others–or who deal with them through our businesses–can be an influence for good, whenever we are in contact with them. Perhaps the most important help can be offered well ahead of a fateful decision to take one’s own life.

When coworkers become aware that a fellow employee is struggling, they can show support and pray for them, but also direct that person to counseling resources and hotline numbers. Suicide prevention is multifaceted.

Like Arlette and Dan, a few moments of personal time, asking questions, opening our lives to the fears and concerns of others could make the difference between life and death.

Jesus said to his followers: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind,’and ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Luke 10:27 from the Bible).

Why Not Commit Suicide When I Have Nothing To Offer?

By Lisa Copen:

When you live with chronic pain there can be many times we question, “why not commit suicide?”

It is easy to look around at our circumstances and believe that we are not making a difference for anyone else in this world. Do we matter?

Is there any part of us left that isn’t all about fighting off chronic pain and illness, but just living? Having relationships? Experiencing joy?

Most people go through times when they feel they are not making a difference to anyone, but for those who cope with deep depression, the feelings of why not commit suicide? I am not worth anything to anyone, are much more serious. When you believe I am worthless, I can’t cope with life, I am not like other people, I will never be successful, I am just surviving this life but not really living, it can be nearly impossible to understand how you make a difference.

But you do.

I know, because I have had people in my life who have lived with these turmoil of emotions. . . and they have made a positive difference in my life. They have encouraged me and given me hope. As I see their pain, but also the dedication to getting up one more day and then one more day, I think, if they can do it, so can I.

Despite the fact that you are considering “why not commit suicide?” you still do make a difference! You may think:

“Why not commit suicide? No one will even miss me. I don’t matter to anyone.”
“Why not commit suicide? No one will hardly realize I am gone, since I am just surviving this life–not contributing to it in any way.”
“Why not commit suicide? People will just be better off without me.”

But consider for a moment that you don’t have to make a difference to the entire world. You only have to touch a life. And if you are here on this earth, it is impossible not to touch someone’s life. Millions of people log on to social networks daily and post a message that encourages someone else. I have seen many people who live with incredible chronic pain and yet they make it their purpose to try to smile at someone who serves them, such as a nurse, a doctor, a home health care worker–someone! Anyone!

Because you may be the only person who encourages a nurse who was beaten by her husband last night and has hidden her bruises. You may be the first patient a doctor sees tomorrow morning after he found out last night his wife is having an affair. You may be the one who smiles at the receptionist who has a teenage daughter who ran away from home yesterday. You never know what pain someone else is going through.

You are special because God created you. You are struggling because earth is filled with pain and suffering. But your value and worth does not come from what you can do here on earth, it comes because you are precious to God.

Genesis 2:7 says, “The Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.”

God created you, and He doesn’t abandon anything He begins. Even when you don’t realize it, you are making a difference in someone’s life. How you face each day can determine if it’s a positive difference or not. But whether you realize it or not, even when you share your struggles, admit defeat, allow yourself to be vulnerable, or just smile at someone, you are inspiring someone. You matter.

So, why not commit suicide? Because you matter–and no feeling or circumstance will ever change that fact.

Did you know that some people believe that the popular “The Legend of the Starfish” was originally about a sand dollar? This video is a simple reminder that you matter–you don’t need to change the world, you don’t need to find the energy or emotional ability to take on a huge ministry or a campaign to end world hunger. You only have to offer what you can and it will make a difference for one, and then another one, and then another one.

Lisa Copen has lived with rheumatoid arthritis for nineteen years, and has found purpose in her pain by reaching out to others with chronic illness. Her organization, Rest Ministries, serves those with chronic illness or pain through daily devotionals and other programs.

How to Comfort Someone Who Has Lost a Loved One

Do you wonder how to comfort someone who has lost a loved one, even to suicide? Just show you care. Here are a few ways:

By PeggySu Wells:

 When someone loses a loved one to suicide, what do I say? How can I be the hands of Jesus to someone who is suffering loss?

In times of deep grief, I have found that hope is more important than advice.

Job said it this way, “Do I have the strength of stone? Is my flesh bronze? Do I have any power to help myself, now that success has been driven from me? A despairing man should have the devotion of his friends,” (Job 6:12 – 14 NIV).

During those dark hours, Jesus calls us not to be experts, but to come alongside and provide enCOURAGEment.

“A friend sent flowers on that first sad Mother’s Day after my child died,” my Sunday school teacher said. “I felt loved and understood.”

Another grieving mother said, “After the loss of my son, some people felt awkward when they saw me and turned away. I appreciated those who hugged me and said, ‘I’m praying for you.’”

Trusting God when we least understand is faith in action. Gentle comfort is given by those that put their arms around hurting people and say, “I don’t understand either. But I love you and I am here to go through this with you.”

Romans 8:38-39 (NIV) promises, “I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

One man said, “I was comforted by those who walked with me in the church parking lot, who sat with me so I wouldn’t be alone in my regular pew, and who invited me to lunch on an otherwise lonely weekend afternoon.”

Time doesn’t heal the wounds of someone who has had to say good-by to a loved one. Time merely teaches us to live with that over-sized, gaping hole in our life and heart. We can walk beside another through the journey of grief. Ecclesiastes 4:10 (NIV) says,

“If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”

The first year after the loss of someone special is especially difficult. Holidays are a merciless reminder that life is forever altered. Comfort your grieving friend with flowers, a note, or a memorial gift in their loved one’s name on Valentines Day, Easter, Mother’s or Father’s Day, birthdays, wedding anniversaries, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. Soothe the sorrow of the anniversary date that marks the loss with a phone call to say, “I’m remembering you today.”

Called to mirror Jesus Christ by being His hands to a hurting world, we help others by seeing and empathizing with their pain. God consoles us so we can show compassion to others.

For additional information on coming alongside someone experiencing loss and grief, read What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Say (Bethany House) and An Early Journey Home (Discovery House).

FAITH––the Suicide Vaccine (Suicide Prevention)

A pharmacist suggests a different kind of ‘vaccine’ for suicide prevention.

By Karen O’Connor:

Image: Sura Nualpradid / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Lisa Hamil, Pharm. D., a registered pharmacist in the State of California, claims that ‘faith is the suicide vaccine’ and she highly recommends it for those who are contemplating taking their own lives.

“Why would anyone want to commit suicide?” she asks, when faith in God can lead one out of depression and the “torments of life’s weariness, guilt, anger, pride, lack of forgiveness, hopelessness, disappointment, betrayal, and the feeling of being unloved?”

Hamil, when working behind the pharmacy counter, speaks with hundreds of people each month who bring in prescriptions for pain-killers, anti-depressant medications and other drugs. She claims most people are looking for relief that medicine cannot address long-term.

“These medications come with a written educational guide that specifically warns patients: ‘Antidepressant medicines may increase suicidal thoughts or actions . . .’  These guides as well as health care providers recommend that patients learn effective coping skills to complement the chemical intervention of antidepressant drugs.” There is no such ‘fix’ for the true source of the problem—separation from the Spirit of God.

“One’s thoughts,” says Hamil, “determine one’s life, mood, and actions. There is no medication available that can reliably change our thoughts or our actions. We must take charge and choose to discipline our thought life. Drugs may help during that thought transition process, but patients must move forward with a clear goal in mind.”

The Bible offers guidance too.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things” (Philippians 4:8).

“Building their faith is the choice depressed patients must make in order to effectively prevent the ultimate dismay that leads to suicide,” says Hamil. “Faith is the suicide vaccine and support is available through other believers, pastors, and inspirational readings.”

Hamil suggests these important steps to take:

1) Choosing to be thankful versus complaining

2) Forgiving yourself and others who have hurt or betrayed you

3) Serving and helping others

4) Focusing on the perfection of God’s love and his provision.

Enjoy this inspiring video with Joyce Meyer speaking on the power of unleashing faith.

Not sure how to find faith? One place to start is http://www.GodTest.com. There you will find a questionnaire that will walk you through common questions about the Christian faith, as well as heartfelt letters about dealing with serious struggles in life.

How to Survive Heartbreak: 7 Steps

How do you heal a broken heart?  You can survive after a breakup.

 

A break up with someone you love is painful, but need not be fatal. It is possible to survive heartbreak.

For starters, it’s your choice to survive. You also can choose to either stay in your grief or take steps to move on, even if you can only take baby steps at first.

If you wonder how to go on living despite your pain, try following these steps. See also the helpful video below.

7 steps to help you live after heartbreak:

1. Know that grief is a process. Dr. Phil says on DrPhil.com:

“Grief is a process to go through, not a destination in which to wallow. In a process, you keep putting one foot in front of the other, and each little step is part of your healing.”

2. Do not worry about trying to be a friend to your ex; at least, not right now. Try to accept that the relationship is over. When you can do this, you will be better able to move on.
3. Stop the self-blame. Be a better friend to yourself! After all, if you were honest, you would have to admit that there are lots of reasons why this relationship ended. So stop pointing the finger at yourself and accept that God has a new direction for you.
4.  Express your feelings to those closest to you. But at some point, choose to forgive your ex’s offenses so you can move toward healing your emotional pain.
5. Don’t harass your ex with things like hang-ups or drive-bys.  Such behavior will continue to pull you into the pain game when you need to push past it.
6.  Learn to trust and love again. You can, with time and God’s grace. Don’t let this experience keep you from finding the love of your life.
7. Pray this healing prayer:

God, I give my pain, grief, bitterness, as well as the offense I am carrying against my ex to you. I do this, not because __________ deserves to be free of the pain of our break-up, but because I do. I choose to forgive and to let go, not through my power, but through your power. I ask for you to break any ungodly soul ties between my ex and I also ask that you heal my broken heart. I tell the spirit of grief to go, and I replace that grief with God’s peace that passes understanding.

Lord, give me clarity, peace, truth, and a fresh start.

In Jesus’s name,

Amen

Fresh from YouTube, here are more steps to survive heartbreak.