Mental Health Advocacy – This is what I sent today (w/bonus requests)

from Bird Flight

Bird Flight

Dear Senator Booker, 

I’m writing to you as both a concerned New Jerseyan and American. I chose to write to you because you have inspired and touched me. When you spoke at this past Democratic Convention I was brought to tears. You seem to have a combination of admirable passion, caring, respectability, and effectiveness. I believe you make a great difference for New Jerseyans and all Americans, and can make an even bigger one in the future. 

I am a woman with a serious mental illness (bipolar disorder). I have been on disability for about six years plus struggling with my illness. Despite that, I’ve donated time (when able) and money (what I could) to organizations like the National Alliance on Mental Illness and Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance that provide support to the mentally ill, do advocacy work, and fight to end mental illness stigma. I can only give so…

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Won’t Ask, Won’t Tell

If u are a member of Kaiser, you want to read this blog.

90 Days to Change

Last month I went to a suicide prevention training designed for therapists. In the first video we watched, a man who had jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge talked about his experience. “For hours I was out there deciding whether or not to go. I told myself that if someone, anyone, asks me if I’m OK, I wouldn’t do it.” Eventually someone did stop to talk, but only to ask him to take her picture. He took this as the final sign and leapt. He regretted his decision the moment he cleared the railing.

For chunks of the training I was dissociating. Words stopped penetrating. I felt floaty, detached. Dissociation is a natural process that kicks in when we’re overwhelmed. My body was shutting itself off from more input while my mind dealt with what was already on my plate. The same thing had happened to me twice before. On…

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