Tag Archives: suicide hotline

Spike in Crisis Line Phone Calls after Robin Williams Death

Since the death of Robin Williams, there has been a spike in calls to crisis lines around the US and Australia.  I am not sure about other parts of the world, as I simply saw articles pertaining to these two countries, however I am sure they probably went up as well.

Calls, chats, messages, and clicks on their websites to Lifeline in America, Lifeline in Australia, Beyond Blue in Australia,  the NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) information line and Facebook page, and local crisis centers all around the US.

Many people were reaching out, seeking help for their depression, suicidal thoughts, and some were simply wondering how people can be depressed – how can someone look happy and yet feel so much pain and kill themselves.  Perhaps with that last question, people will begin to understand depression more and even see or help someone else around them who might present happy but really be very depressed.

While they do not really know how many people were reaching out for help due to their depression and suicidal thoughts prior to Robin Williams death versus those who were affected by his death and began to feel suicidal after in response to his death (example, when you have someone close to you die, you begin to feel like you want to die) — they are glad that more people know about the crisis lines and support systems and are using them.

While I do think Robin Williams death brought a great deal of attention to suicide and mental health, I also think it is going to die down soon as it usually does even though people seem to care very much about it after such a loss.  However, hopefully after all those posts of the suicide hotline numbers – this will not die down and people will remember these resources – and use them – and reach out for help when they need to.

Here are a few articles discussing the increases in spikes in crisis center calls — and there are quite a few more if you search on the internet.

Australian News Article Discussing the increase in spikes in crisis calls

American Aljazeera Article Discussing the increase in spikes in crisis line calls

Houston, TX News Article Discussing local crisis center call increase

Augusta, Maine Article – Discussing local crisis center call increase

Advertisements

I took a big step, I called a Crisis Line

Yesterday I broke down.  My anxiety consumed me.  I tried to use my copings skills – I went out, went to Michaels – bought some more canvas and paint to come home and paint. I couldn’t handle it though.  “Hurt yourself.” “Cut yourself” “Hit yourself” “Break a bone” My brain kept wanting to find a way out of this feeling of extreme dread and torture that was going on. 

The minute I got home I knew I couldn’t do what my brain was saying. I had done that before. I did that for two years and all it did was get me put in the hospital, in the ICU, the ER, and the psych hospital.  I couldn’t go back to that.  I cant go back to that.  I am trying to stay in recovery.  I am trying to get my life back and stay on track.

I called 211.  It connected me to the local crisis line.  It is easier than dialing the suicide hotline, all I have to remember is 211 rather than a bunch of numbers, plus the suicide crisis line would connect me to 211 anyway, since it just connects you to your local crisis line.  For those of you who don’t know what 211 is – it is a free and confidential informational and referral line available in most cities/counties in the United States.  They can connect you with resources to find help with food, housing, employment, health care, counseling and more – and in my area also provide the crisis/suicide line. 

Anyway, I spent 33 minutes talking to a wonderful volunteer.  Probably 15 minutes crying my eyes out.  Eventually we came up with a plan, had some laughs, and I am feeling better.  Thank goodness I got my mind set straight because I do not want to end up back in the hospital!

I was assured I could call back as many times as I needed, 24 hours a day, and they could help me. 

Today was a rough day, and I suspect it is going to be a rough week.  Honestly, I think it is going to be a rough few months.  I don’t think my meds are working right, or not well enough anyway – perhaps a dosage adjustment.  I don’t think my doctor is getting my anxiety under control at all – at least not quick enough.  I know that I can’t give up though.  I know not to go back to my old habit – which was just not thinking and just doing.  I know I cant be impulsive anymore.  Not that it is that easy, impulse is impulse, but I can still keep working on it.

 

If you are in a crisis reach out for help:

National Suicide Prevention Line: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Lifeline Crisis Chat

IMAlive Crisis Chat

Veteran Crisis Online Chat

Call: 211

In the UK? Call the Samaritans: 08457 90 90 90

In Australia? Call Lifeline: 13 11 14  or chat with them

In New Zealand? Call Lifeline’s Warmline: 0508 927 654 or Suicide Crisis Line: 0508 828 865

Life with Suicidal Thoughts

It is so easy to think about suicide.  And then so easy to begin ruminating on it.  And for me, it eventually became easy to act on those thoughts.  For two years, I was so deeply depressed that my life revolved around my suicidal ideations and even suicide attempts.  I would simply lie on my couch, crying and thinking about how to die and how much I wanted to die.  I knew why and yet I didn’t know why at the same time.  Sometimes it had to do with my bipolar, a chemical imbalance.  Some of it had to do with my borderline personality, just if something happened that triggered me to suddenly lose control of my feelings.  And other times it just had to do with my PTSD if I was having awful memories and wanted to just get away from them and end my life. It went on for two years though because I didn’t want the help, I didn’t know how to truly accept the help, and in some weird way, I didn’t even think I needed help.  I felt like the only help I needed was for someone to help me die.

I had quite a few suicide attempts, but never really did any major damage.  I was in the ICU a few times, but only one of those times was it somewhat serious.  At the time, I didn’t know if I was happy or sad to be alive.  Actually even today I am not sure how I feel about that attempt.  Things have gotten much better in my life, but I still suffer with depression because of my mental illness, and so I question if living or dying would be best.  I do not think suicide is the answer at all, but as many (not all) people with depression do, suicide still comes up in my mind from time to time.

I really like the saying: “Suicide does not end the chances of life getting worse, Suicide eliminates the chances of it ever getting better.”

People always tell you, “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”  Yes yes yes… I know I know.  But in my head, my problem is not temporary, so if you say that to me… it doesn’t even sound like a good statement.  So I hated when people told me that.  And everyone told me that, over and over again.

However, the first statement, that just seemed really eye opening to me.  I really never pictured my life getting better, but it still lit up my mind to thinking perhaps it could.  So when I think of suicide now, I always tell myself this quote.  If I just wait another day and see how that goes.  Maybe tomorrow will be better.  And I just keep putting it off.  Eventually the thought does pass.  Eventually I do have a day that is better than the previous day, and the thought somewhat disappears into my brain – until the next chemical imbalance or trigger or flashback.  Again, I try to use the same technique of putting off and suicidal actions day after day after day though.

I lost a friend to a drug overdose back in November.  It was not a suicide attempt, but she did suffer with depression.  It hurt me incredibly bad.  Seeing how it affected me and her family and other friends was very eye opening.  I never thought about how much it would hurt my family and friends.  I really believed in my mind I would make things better for my family and friends.  I thought they would believe I was better off dead – that my pain would be gone and so they would forgive me for what I did.  That I would no longer be a burden to them and that they would be happy with me gone.  But now that I am thinking clearly, on proper medication, in good therapy – I see that this thought process was not true at all.  I slip into every once in a while still, but that is how our brains work and we have to fight back.

We will all go back and forth, have good days and bad days, but we can have a good life.  I went through 17 hospitalizations between 2011-2013.  Fifteen of those being within 1.5 years.  Today, while I still struggle, I am stable for the most part and trying to get my life back on track.  Much happier, not lying on my couch all day, not crying all the time, and my mind is not obsessed with dying.  Life does get better.  I never thought I would say that either.

 

If you, or anyone you know, might be feeling suicidal, call the suicide hotline at: 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or go to http://www.crisischat.org (between 2pm-2am)

Also, talk with your doctor and/or therapist if you have one about how you are feeling, and do not abruptly stop any of your medications without consulting them.