The fight for my life

About 18 months ago I got sick. Very sick. I ended up in hospital, and was to stay there for almost nine months. I was embarrassed and ashamed and felt that I couldn’t tell anyone where I was. I told some people I was on holidays, others that I was away for work. But the truth was that I was on a psychiatric ward fighting for my life. I say fighting because that’s what I felt I was doing.

It all happened rather quickly. One minute I was bridesmaid at my sister’s wedding and the next thing I was inpatient on an acute psychiatric ward. It all happened so fast and in a number of weeks I unravelled in spectacular style.

At first I was afraid. I was so afraid of the thoughts that were going on in my head that I didn’t tell anyone. I kept it to myself. I’m very lucky and have great friends and family but couldn’t find the words to tell them how I was feeling so as far as they were concerned I was fine. But I wasn’t. I was far from fine and was in such a bad place that I just couldn’t find the words to explain how I was feeling. I believed that I would be better off dead and that my friends and family would be better off without me. Continue reading

Youth not politicians need to take control of suicide prevention via spunout.ie

Via@spunout.ie

Opinion: It’s up to you to tackle youth suicide.

By: Ian Howley

Ask yourself these questions.

  • What has the government done in the last year to improve suicide prevention?
  • What has Ireland done in the last year to tackle the high level of suicides?
  • What has your county/town/community done in the last year to stop young people taking their own lives?
  • What have YOU done in the last year to stop suicide?

Throughout the 2000’s, Ireland became a place where young people sat back and enjoyed the journey through life without much hardship. This has all changed in the last few years or so. Not only does today’s youth have to put up with a recession, job loss, poverty, dole queues and emigration. Young people have to still ‘find themselves.’

Over the last 5 years or so (starting from about the age of 21), I have been heavily involved with suicide prevention. I have shared my story of battling with my own demons as a young person. I have been at conferences, talks, schools, colleges etc. I have talked to hundreds and thousands of people about why it’s important to talk about your problems, to speak out and to have some courage to change your life. I have watched as people connect with me, cry with me, laugh with me but yet in 2010 suicides in Ireland are increasing faster then ever before. The latest official figures show a 24% increase in suicides in with 527 people taking their own lives in 2008. Last year suicide prevention funding was cut by 12.5% with another 6.5% this year. Suicide prevention receives roughly €5 million a year while road safety receives €40 million, yet more people die by suicide then on our roads.

Many of you will be disgusted with these figures and say that the government should do more. While I agree with this statement I also say you need to be realistic. The current government has failed this country miserably in more ways than suicide prevention. To expect them to be capable of tackling suicide prevention is unrealistic. Politicians are more worried about saving their jobs then saving lives.

It’s up to you to tackle youth suicide. You need to realise that only by coming together as a collective group will change happen. You need to step up in your community, take a lead and say enough is enough. Suicide is not a national problem, it’s a community problem. Who knows more about your community than you?

It’s time for you to get out there, make your voice heard, get involved in local suicide prevention charities and make a real difference.

Recently a friend of mine was going through some troubles. He came close to taking his own life. Just being there and listening to him was enough to save his life. Make your friends listen, make your community listen, make politicians listen and let’s eradicate suicide in Ireland forever.

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Suicide Prevention Week- 3T’s Candlelight Vigils


Approximately 600 people die by suicide annually in Ireland. It is a tragedy that devastates families and touches every community. Everybody knows somebody and so many loved somebody.
Once again, 3Ts are planning Candlelight Vigils in Dublin, Galway and Wexford to mark World Suicide Prevention Week.  We are asking all our supporters to attend and to tell a friend.

 This is the 6th year that the 3Ts have held Candlelight Vigils to mark World Suicide Prevention Week. These events are for all who have lost family, friends and colleagues through suicide, to gather, to light a candle and to honour and remember lost loved ones.   They also serve to highlight the support of the wider community with special guest speakers, music and a minute’s silence.

The Vigils are very moving occasions and I think that everyone who attends one finds it a very worthwhile experience.  We are asking our supporters to let as many people as you can know about our Vigils.  Tell your friends and family – post a link to this page on your Facebook.  We appreciate anything you can do to help us get word out.

 3Ts World Suicide Prevention Week Candlelight Vigil details are as follows:

Dublin

Venue:              Forecourt, Bank of Ireland, College Green, Dublin 2 

Date:                 World Suicide Prevention Day, Friday, 10 September 2010

 Time:                8pm to 9pm

Wexford

Venue:              The Bull Ring, Wexford

Date:                 Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Time:                8pm to 9pm

Galway

Date: Friday, 11th September 2009
Venue: St Nicholas Collegiate Church, College Street, Galway City
Time: 8pm to 9.15pm

The 3Ts Vigils are open to all.  Admission is free and candles are provided free of charge.  No booking is required.

 

Devastated by the sudden loss of a friend

 Below is a link to an excellent article written by a friend of mine DAIRE Ní BHRAOIN. Daire talks about her struggle to come to terms the loss of a close friend, and how grief has no time limit.  It takes a lot of courage to be so honest about something so personal- so fair play to Daire for sharing.

NEARLY EIGHT months ago I got news that would change me forever – a very good friend of mine had fallen down stairs and died. This news was heartbreaking enough but as the day went by I learned that it hadn’t been an accident, he had been pushed by another young man. I was numb. I didn’t believe it to be true until the day of the funeral when I could no longer ignore the truth. My friend’s death has left me in a very dark place; all my thoughts have been on how such a thing could have happened. The past couple of months I have lived behind a dark cloud, anything that could have gone wrong has, and I have found myself struggling in terms of my mental health. Finding the strength to get out of bed every day is sometimes just too much. 

I sometimes feel like Humpty Dumpty: one more thing and no one will be able to put me together again. Most of the time, looking at me, you’d never fully know. People around me who know and care for me have some idea, but can never know what thoughts are going through my mind. I have always been independent and find it difficult to draw on others for strength. Despite my awareness of existing services and the benefits of engaging with them, I feel that my grief is mine and only I can work through it. I chose to take this journey on my own. Continue reading

How did we get here?

I’m Gillian and from Dublin. I’ve found that living in a busy suburb means I have to find ways to unwind in my own home. Feeling safe is a big help in relaxing myself. I’m always experimenting with new methods of relaxing and unwinding.

Have you ever stood still for a moment and wondered how you’d gotten there, to that moment, that place, that age, that situation?
I’m fortunate to have received some great techniques for stopping myself, pausing everything, and bringing myself back to the present moment. Sometimes it works better than others, but for the most part it calms me down, something someone like me, who over thinks, needs a lot! Continue reading