CALL TO ACTION: Univ. North Florida

Update: Student Union Director confirms post was innocently posted on social media and has been removed, there was never an on campus presence as originally reported.


On April 17th our Exec. Director sent a call to action regarding an insensitive Call to Action for University of North Florida AdminsScreen Shot 2017-04-18 at 11.49.44 AM

Ball State University

Department of Communication Studies

 

 

 

STIGMA RESEARCH PAPER

 

By Jake Griffin

 

 

 
 

 

April 19, 2017

 

Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements of:

 

Human Relationship Development

CSPY 230, SECT 800

 

Instructor:

Chad Sims

 

 

S T I G M A

 

S-T-I-G-M-A—Stigma. How can one six letter word cause so many people suffering from mental illness so much pain, shame, isolation, secrecy and discrimination? Stigma refers to the negative or misperceived feelings one exhibits towards another of a certain trait or characteristic, such as in this instance, being plagued with mental health issues ranging from Major Depressive Disorder to post traumatic stress disorder(PTSD). How can having to deal with a mental illness be just as bad as having to face the major forms of adversity that come with sharing the way you feel with others? While many share a commitment to helping improve equality pertaining to those struggling with mental health, there are obstacles and barriers in place by society and in the general publics’ perceptions that make equality a distant reality. This stigma is often a major determent towards those in need opting to receive quality care, leading to impediments of their overall wellbeing which disables them from living the most positive and fulfilling lives possible. 

The movies and media sometime describe people with mental illnesss as, “homicidal maniacs” leading to a public perception of mental illness that leads many suffering not to pursue treatment out of fear of be labeled. This in turn leads to several major types of stigma known as public, label avoidance, structural stigma and self-stigma. These varying forms have led to public perceptions. According to Rogers & Pilgrim (2009), the public has mixed perceptions regarding people with mental illness. They believe that people with mental disorder are more likely to act violently, commit crimes, endanger others, and behave inappropriately or unintelligibly. Some people have a “fear of contamination by the illness and fear of unpredictable danger” initiated by mentally ill people (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2009, p. 24-26). As result, the general public tends to stereotype and discriminate people with mental illness. The stigmatized people are often excluded from their social or cultural groups which can further lead to further isolation (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2009). Additionally, the prejudice attitude and the label that people with mental illness perceive from the public lower their self-efficacy or self-esteem, and threatens their sense of self-identity. They are most likely to feel depersonalized, rejected, and disempowered (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2009). The feeling of despair, helplessness, and worthlessness are also the result. Leading not only to negative impacts for the stigmatized person struggling from a mental illness but in addition these negative connotations, also have a disadvantage in employment, particularly in the already competitive job market as well. So what exactly is stigma? Stigma shows up in different forms. The President’s New Freedom Commission on Mental Health defines stigma as “a cluster of negative attitudes and beliefs that motivate the general public to fear, reject, avoid, and discriminate against people with mental illnesses.” So, stigma begins in our minds. It happens when we believe myths and popular media portrayals of mental illness, such as, “All people with mental illness are violent,” and we start to put those with mental illness in a box. We assign labels and see them as different from us. And the moment society starts to see someone or something as “different”, it sets the stage for wrongful treatment to follow. Think of racism or sexism. Stigma is not much different, although we don’t consider it a blatant social taboo in that sense, as it sometimes should be. Like the “-ism” forms of prejudice, stigma manifests itself outwardly—by way of discrimination in both subtle and overt forms. 

Most importantly to consider in regard to stigma is the harm this causes—both for the person with mental illness and for society at large.

First, stigma impacts the individual with mental illness. The CDC reports that only 20% of adults with a mental disorder saw a mental health provider in the past year, and the shame and embarrassment associated with getting help is a major barrier. We have created a society where people don’t want others to find out about their “issues”, and for this reason alone, many avoid seeking treatment. Instead, they may turn to dangerous coping methods such as binging or self-coping with explicit drugs or drinking, which raises their risk for chronic disease, addiction and premature death. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, those living with serious mental illness die an average of 25 years earlier than the general public—largely in treatable conditions. On a broader level, stigma harms society. Discrimination against people with mental illness leads to unequal access to housing, health care, employment, education, and community support, and this leads to unemployment, homelessness, and poverty. In addition, the perception that mass media portrays about mentally ill people as “being naively cheerful, childlike, and quirky” (Rogers & Pilgrim, 2009, p. 36) lead to social misinterpretation. Martinez (2014) stated that fear of social discrimination becomes a major barrier that does not motivate people who are experiencing mental distress to seek for psychiatric help. Fear of losing job status, fear of criticism, and fear of losing a family also prevent them from obtaining psychiatric intervention (Martinez, 2014). Evidently, people with mental illness perceived stigma in all angles which further lead to mental health deterioration.

       How do the attitudes of community members contribute to stigmatization in people with mental illness? Schulz (2007) states that people with mental illness not only experience this stigma or social discrimination from families, relatives, colleagues, and employers, but they also experience stigmatization from being exposed to someone with a mental illness firsthand. For example, Rogers & Pilgrim (2009) point out that “mental health care workers tend to be paternalistic towards psychotic patients by distrusting and rejecting of those with a diagnosis of personality disorder” (p. 38). Patients diagnosed with mental illness are more likely to receive a lesser quality of psychiatric care by mental health care providers. A study reveals that patients felt stigmatized when mental health professionals do not have interest in their patients’ concerns, do not explain the side-effects of antipsychotic medication such as extrapyramidal symptoms, weight gain; and in fact, they provide generalized treatment to all patients rather than patient-centred treatment (Schulz, 2007). Patients further report that mental health professionals are often provided “a negative prognosis such as ‘You’ve got schizophrenia, you will be ill for the rest of your life’ or ‘your illness means that you will end up committing suicide” (Schulz, 2007, p. 145). These comments not only provide a clear explanation to patients about the treatment, but these comments also further stigmatize patients with mental illness. It is obvious that patients with mental illness perceived stigma before, during, and after seeking for psychiatric treatment.

How can we all help reduce stigmatization in people with mental illness? There are many programs that the stakeholders and advocates have employed on a nationwide and global level to to fight and curve the stigma in mental health. Active Minds, is a national student mental health awareness and advocacy group based in Washington, DC formed in 2003. Their mission is to increase students’ awareness of mental health issues, provide information and resources regarding mental health and mental illness, and to encourage to seek help as soon as it is needed. By promoting awareness and education, Active Minds aims to reduce stigma that surrounds mental illness and create an open environment for discussion of mental health issues. The goals of these programs are aimed to change the publics attitude toward the people with mental illness and respect them as equal citizens. According to Horsfall (2010), the expected outcomes are to eliminate discrimination and prejudice, increase public awareness, provide knowledge regarding mental health, reduce barriers to psychiatric treatment, and improve stigma management. In order to address the issue of discrimination in employment, the CDC alongside stakeholders such as Mental Health America provide educational programs and outreach teams in an effort to curtail the stigmatizing thoughts and beliefs in society about mental illness. Studies suggest that advocates must also educate themselves to avoid stigmatization in mental health field. By providing an in-service training session or QPR(Suicidal ideation version of CPR) regarding stigma to mental health care professionals, undergraduates, postgraduates and by focusing on encouraging hope, promoting recovery process, and providing a human centered approach, society gains perspective on stigmatization and their attitudes are better equipped to combat the ideologies that may contribute to stigmatization. In addition, Corrigan in 2001 found that the emotion of compassion provided by mental health care providers “are typically conceived of as directed outside the self, can redirect toward the self to promote care-taking actions such as treatment seeking.” Simply providing insight and resources for those who are experiencing mental illness use to learn more about the illness and treatment, attend a self-help group support, and meet and discuss about mental illness with community advocates are the strategies that help increase treatment seeking behaviors/ In addition, advocates should respect, listen, acknowledge consumers concerns, provide emotional support, and work with their strengths in order to reduce stigma. There are a plethora of ways for advocates and community members to help sufferers live more positive and fulfilling lives.

       In relation, people who are living with mental illness experience stigma from all aspects of life even from consumers or those with illnesses themselves who understand most about the nature of mental illness. Fortunately, there are many programs and campaigns that are designed to combat stigma in mental health nationally and internationally. It is evident that reducing stigma in mental health requires everyone’s effort, especially advocates who frequently interact with people in all walks of life. Mental illness can be present in anyone; regardless of socioeconomics status, age, or race—so it is not shameful to seek for help. In fact, it is beneficial to seek for treatment because one’s mental health can be well-nurtured and cared for. Together, these forms of “stigma” further form barriers to treatment for those with need. In order too effectively begin to heal the symptoms of mental illness, we must challenge the notion that seeking aid for behavioral health problems is not a sign of weakness or flawed character. We must raise public awareness of the realities of the behavioral health disorders afflicting those at risk. As Americans and as communities, we must take steps to provide adequate and continuous care for in all aspects of cognitive and social development. Community beliefs surrounding mental health, and especially suicide, is eradicated, out of touch and desensitized. Schools are discouraged from discussing suicide out of fear of memorializing suicides—out of fear of “suicide contagion.” However, chain suicides are rare and only account for 1 to 5 percent of suicides annually. In addition, 90 percent of people who commit suicide have a predetermined mental disorder, so there is no way to “catch suicide.” This means censoring suicide memorials and desensitizing mental illness in schools or in other mediums such as Netflix benefits no one. This misinformation rooted in miseducation causes negative effects into adulthood. Just take a look at how politicians speak about mental illness:“We should work to reduce tragic acts of violence by addressing violence at its source, including untreated mental illness,” Marco Rubio said to a crowd of reporters shortly after the Sandy Hook shooting. Rubio has been notorious for using mental illness as a scapegoat for gun violence. When we only talk about mental health when something goes wrong, society is inevitably are going to associate these disorders with tragedy.

 

Eradicating the stigmas associated with mental health needs to be addressed head on. The fact is that we need to work to address and explain these issues preemptively. Tip toeing around so called “sensitive subjects” makes them taboo, when we should be working to normalize these very prevalent and detrimental issues impacting society.

 

WORK CITED

Benner, G. J., Beaudoin, K. M., Chen, P., Davis, C., & Ralston, N. C. (2010). The impact of intensive positive behavioral supports on the behavioral functioning of students with emotional disturbance: How much does fidelity matter? Journal of Behavior Assessment and Intervention in Children, 1(1), 85-100. doi:10.1037/h0100361

Brener, N. D., Martindale, J., & Weist, M. D. (2001). Mental Health and Social Services: Results from the School Health Policies and Programs Study 2000. Journal of School Health, 71(7), 305-312. doi:10.1111/j.1746-1561.2001.tb03507.x

Cappella, E., Frazier, S. L., Atkins, M. S., Schoenwald, S. K., & Glisson, C. (2008). Enhancing Schools’ Capacity to Support Children in Poverty: An Ecological Model of School-Based Mental Health Services. Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, 35(5), 395-409. doi:10.1007/s10488-008-0182-y

Chappell, N. L., & Penning, M. (2009). Understanding health, health care, and health policy in Canada: sociological perspectives. Don Mills, Ont.: Oxford University Press.

CDC. (n.d.). Attitudes Toward Mental Illness – 35 States, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico, 2007. PsycEXTRA Dataset. doi:10.1037/e552452010-003

Corrigan, P.W., & Lundin, R.K. (2001). Don’t call me nuts! Coping with the stigma of mental

illness. (pp. 456). Tinley Park, IL: Recovery Press.    
Corrigan, P.W. (Ed.) (2005). On the stigma of mental illness: Implications for research and social change. (pp. 343). Washington DC: American Psychological Association Press. 
Corrigan, P.W., Roe, D., & Tsang, H., W. (2011). Challenging the Stigma of Mental Illness: Lessons for Therapists and Advocates. (pp.213). West-Sussex, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.       
Eckert, T. L., Miller, D. N., Riley-Tillman, T. C., & Dupaul, G. J. (2006). Adolescent suicide prevention: Gender differences in students’ perceptions of the acceptability and intrusiveness of school-based screening programs. Journal of School Psychology, 44(4), 271-285. doi:10.1016/j.jsp.2006.05.001

Gallagher, R. P., (2010). National Survey of Counseling Center Directors (Rep.). Alexandria, VA: The International Association of Counseling Services.

Gallagher, R. P., (2015). National Survey of Counseling Center Directors (Rep.). Alexandria, VA: The International Association of Counseling Services.

Haas, A. P., Koestner, B., Rosenberg, J., Moore, D., Garlow, S. J., Sedway, J., Nicholas, L., Hendin, H., Mann, J., and Nemeroff, C. B., “An Interactive Web-Based Method of Outreach to College Students at Risk for Suicide,” Journal of American College Health, Vol. 57, No. 1, 2008, pp. 15–22. 
Horsfall, J., Cleary, M., & Hunt, G. E. (2010). Stigma in Mental Health: Clients and Professionals. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 31(7), 450-455. 
Kann, L., Telljohann, S. K., & Wooley, S. F. (2007). Health Education: Results From the School Health Policies and Programs Study 2006. Journal of School Health,77(8), 408-434. doi:10.1111/j.1746-1561.2007.00228.x

Kataoka, S., Stein, B. D., Nadeem, E., & Wong, M. (2007). Who Gets Care? Mental Health Service Use Following a School-Based Suicide Prevention Program. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry,46(10), 1341-1348. doi:10.1097/chi.0b013e31813761fd

Nabors, L. A., & Reynolds, M. W. (2000). Program Evaluation Activities: Outcomes Related to Treatment for Adolescents Receiving School-Based Mental Health Services. Children’s Services, 3(3), 175-189. doi:10.1207/s15326918cs0303_4

Otto F. Wahl, Ph.D.; Mental Health Consumers’ Experience of Stigma. Schizophrenia Bulletin 1999; 25 (3): 467-478. doi: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.schbul.a033394
Perry, C. L., Klepp, K., Halper, A., Hawkins, K. G., & Murray, D. M. (1986). A Process Evaluation Study of Peer Leaders in Health Education. Journal of School Health, 56(2), 62-67. doi:10.1111/j.1746-1561.1986.tb01176.x

School-Based Health Care: Practice Interventions, Outcomes, and Impacts From the Field. (2012). School-Based Health Care: Advancing Educational Success and Public Health. doi:10.2105/9780875530062pt01

Schulz, R., & Sherwood, P. R. (2008). Physical and Mental Health Effects of Family Caregiving. The American Journal of Nursing, 108(9 Suppl), 23–27. http://doi.org/10.1097/01.NAJ.0000336406.45248.4c

State Specific Suicide Hotlines

Suicide Hotlines in the United States

Please click on your state below:

Alabama Suicide Hotlines

Alaska Suicide Hotlines

Arizona Suicide Hotlines

Arkansas Suicide Hotlines

California Suicide Hotlines

Colorado Suicide Hotlines

Connecticut Suicide Hotlines

Delaware Suicide Hotlines

Florida Suicide Hotlines

Georgia Suicide Hotlines

Hawaii Suicide Hotlines

Idaho Suicide Hotlines

Illinois Suicide Hotlines

Indiana Suicide Hotlines

Iowa Suicide Hotlines

Kansas Suicide Hotlines

Kentucky Suicide Hotlines

Louisiana Suicide Hotlines

Maine Suicide Hotlines

Maryland Suicide Hotlines

Massachusetts Suicide Hotlines

Michigan Suicide Hotlines

Minnesota Suicide Hotlines

Mississippi Suicide Hotlines

Missouri Suicide Hotlines

Montana Suicide Hotlines

Nebraska Suicide Hotlines

Nevada Suicide Hotlines

New Hampshire Suicide Hotlines

New Jersey Suicide Hotlines

New Mexico Suicide Hotlines

New York Suicide Hotlines

North Carolina Suicide Hotlines

North Dakota Suicide Hotlines

Ohio Suicide Hotlines

Oklahoma Suicide Hotlines

Oregon Suicide Hotlines

Pennsylvania Suicide Hotlines

Rhode Island Suicide Hotlines

South Carolina Suicide Hotlines

South Dakota Suicide Hotlines

Tennessee Suicide Hotlines

Texas Suicide Hotlines

Utah Suicide Hotlines

Vermont Suicide Hotlines

Virginia Suicide Hotlines

Washington Suicide Hotlines

Washington D.C. Suicide Hotlines

West Virginia Suicide Hotlines

Wisconsin Suicide Hotlines

Wyoming Suicide Hotlines

Self-Care Series: Week 1

selfcareseries1.png

Welcome to our Self-Care Series! This week I want to talk about something we have a tendency to do for others…but not for ourselves.  That would be…CELEBRATE! Each one of us has  these moments of triumph in our lives. They happen far more frequently than we notice. Each and every day there is something to celebrate.  As a parent, spouse, friend, co-worker….we see those moments for other people.  If you have ever potty trained a child…you know that those first few times the child actually uses the bathroom it feels like you’ve won a Nobel Peace Prize!  OR what about when your spouse/significant other gets a raise or a new client? How do you feel inside when a friend calls you in a fit of excitement to share a moment of joy?

You celebrate these moments with them…for them….and it’s real, genuine joy that you have for them.

We need to take those moments for ourselves too.

Recently, I’ve decided to get rid of the clutter and downsize.  I used to be the kinda gal that liked every surface covered with something that meant something. I wanted pictures on every wall and knick-knacks on every flat surface.  BUT it caused me so much stress. My home never looked neat. The amount of stuff everywhere actually game me  anxiety,  but didn’t realize it for years.

Over the last couple of months I’ve been purging my home. It’s incredible how much peace this has brought me…and also how easy it is to keep things clean!

I sit back now and look around and I find joy and peace in my clutter free spaces.  And I celebrate this.  I truly do. I smile….give myself a pat on the back and allow that happiness, pride and again….joy….to surround me.

A lot of us wouldn’t think to celebrate these moments…but if it matters to you and you did it…celebrate it.

Take pride in your moments. They can be HUGE…life changing….OR just the stuff we do on a day to day basis. Take a moment and list (even mentally if the paper is too much hassle) all the things that you’ve accomplished today and celebrate them!

Celebrate YOU. You deserve it.

I’d love to read your thoughts…share them below!

nikkisig

young girl on reception at the psychologist

Depression and Suicide

Untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide.

You are not depressed when you feel sad for a day or two; you are depressed when you experience a prolonged period of sadness that interferes with your ability to function. Depression occurs because of an imbalance of chemicals in the brain. It is an illness. And it is highly treatable.

Unfortunately, many people do not receive treatment for depression, and thus are at risk for suicide.

If you or have some of these symptoms below, please seek help immediately:

  • Feeling sad for two or more weeks
  • Feeling lethargic — feeling like you have no energy
  • Unable to concentrate
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Eating too much or too little
  • Feeling worthless
  • Feeling hopeless
  • Feeling helpless
  • Feeling negative or pessimisstic
  • Losing interest in activities that you previously enjoyed
  • Crying frequently
  • Withdrawing from others
  • Neglecting personal appearance
  • Feeling angry
  • Feeling guilty
  • Unable to think clearly
  • Unable to make decisions

Basically, if “the blues” do not go away after two weeks, you probably have depression. And you need to get treatment. So please make an appointment with a medical doctor and a therapist so you may be properly evaluated. Many people do not think of going to a medical doctor when they are depressed, but it is an important step because there could be a physical problem beside the chemical imbalance that is causing the depression. And please get into therapy. If the therapist believes that you need medication he or she can refer you to someone.

Get help now.

Get treatment now.

Many people who have depression do not get help. So please, do the right thing and make those appointments.

Again, you may need to take medication. So, please leave that option open. People take medication all of the time for a variety of ailments, why should taking medication for depression be any different?

And please understand that when you are depressed that you affect the people around you. So get help for your loved ones as well as yourself. If you need to take medication, then you should do so. You can ask the doctor and therapist all of the questions that you can think of. And you can do your own research. You can seek a second and even a third opinion. But the bottom line is that you need to do what is necessary to get better.

You might believe that you could never become suicidal, but protracted, untreated depression will make almost anyone suicidal, including you. So take action now. If you are depressed, make those appointments immediately.

If finances are holding you back, then look for low-priced clinics in your community. Call 1-800-SUICIDE for referrals.

If you are not depressed but know someone who is, please make sure that he or she receives help. Remember that untreated depression is the number one cause for suicide, so immediate action is required.

Take action–

Force yourself to take action.

People care about you.

So please take action now.

And please read the following articles for additional information about depression.

People With Depression Cannot “Snap Out Of It”

“It’s Not That Bad” is the Wrong Thing to Say to Someone Who is Depressed or Suicidal

I Think I Have Depression What Should I do?

Depression Information

Depression and Exercise

Depression and Your Diet

Morbid Obesity, Depression, and Suicide

Depression and Vitamins

Depression Distorts Your Thinking

Depression and Dietary Supplements

Brain Images Show Different Therapies for Depression Affect Different Areas of the Brain

Treating Depression with SSRIs

Why do Antidepressants Cause Side Effects in Some People and Not in Others?

Patients on Antidepressants Need to be Monitored Very Closely During Their First Month of Treatment

What You Need to Know if Your Child or Teen May Need Antidepressants

Are Antidepressants Safe for Children? Can They Cause Suicide?

Antidepressants Help Protect Hippocampus, an Important Brain Structure

Many Pregnant Women Suffer From Depression; Few Get Treatment; A Suicide Risk

Seniors Need to Stay Active to Fight Depression

Australian Doctors Help Reduce Elderly Suicide Rate By Recognizing and Treating Depression

Vascular Depression in the Elderly; A Suicide Risk

Study Shows Brain Difference in Those With Treatment-Resistant Depression

MRI Scans May Temporarily Relieve Depression; May be Used on People Who are Suicidal

When Will My Depression End?

If you are suicidal TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION

Call 1-800-273-8255
Available 24 hours everyday

Guide for Callers in Suicidal Ideation

If you ever receive a phone call from someone who is suicidal, there are several things that you will want to do:

Listen attentively to everything that the caller says, and try to learn as much as possible about what the caller’s problems are.

Allow the caller to cry, scream or swear. Suicidal feelings are very powerful, so let them come out.

Stay calm, and be supportive, sympathetic, and kind.

Do not be judgmental or invalidate the person’s feelings. Let the caller express emotions without negative feedback.

After you have a good understanding of the caller’s problems, summarize the problems back to him or her. This helps to preclude misunderstandings and demonstrates to the caller that you are being attentive.

Then ask the caller, “Are you feeling so bad that you are thinking about suicide?”

If the answer is yes, ask, “Have you thought about how you would do it?”

If the answer is yes, ask, “Do you have what you need to do it?”

If the answer is yes, ask, “Have you thought about when you would do it?”

Here are those four important questions in abbreviated form:

  1. Suicidal?
  2. Method?
  3. Have what you need?
  4. When?

The reason for asking these questions is to assess the level of risk of suicide for the caller. If the caller answers yes to three or four questions, the risk is very high, and immediate treatment is necessary. Try to get the individual to call 911 or go to an emergency room.

If the caller answered yes to one or two questions, try to determine if immediate treatment is necessary. If you deem that it is, try to get the individual to call 911 or go to an emergency room.

At a minimum, you should try to get the individual to see a therapist and a medical doctor as soon as possible. Gently explain that he or she probably has clinical depression or something similar and thus has a chemical imbalance in the brain, and that this is a very common condition, but definitely needs to be treated.

Only let the person go when you are sure that he or she is not in immediate danger of suicide. And, again, before you let the person go, emphasize that it is imperative that treatment is received. It is not an option, it is a requirement.

CHECKOUT THIS EXTENSIVE RESOURCE AND CONSIDER PRINTING A COPY AND KEEPING IT NEARY BY YOUR PHONE

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0Sd6mo_6OBnQnJGQjE3ZnliZ0U/view?usp=sharing

Self-Help QUOTES

Self-Help Quotes

Insightful Quotes on Self-Help

#1 and most importantly; “Don’t feel guilty for doing what is best for you.”

Self-improvement quote – What ever you decide to do, make sure it makes you happy.
Quote about self-help – What ever you decide to do, make sure it makes you happy.

Self-help quote – If you stumble, make it part of the dance.
Self-improvement quote – The moment when you want to quit, is the moment when you need to keep pushing.
Quote about self-help – What we see depends mainly on what we look for.
Self-help quote – There is a season for everything under the sun-even when we can’t see the sun.
Self-improvement quote – A happy soul is the best shield for a cruel world.
Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground
Self-help quote – It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.
Self-improvement quote – Remember to be proud of yourself. No victory is too small to celebrate.
Quote about self-help: “At the end of the day, you can either focus on what’s tearing you apart or what’s holding you together.
Self-help quote – Difficult roads often lead to be beautiful destinations.”
Self-improvement quote – Don’t stumble over something behind you.
Quote about self-help – The greatest power you can give someone is to say, ‘I believe in you’.
Self-help quote – Sometimes the bad things that happen in our lives put us directly on the path to the best things that will ever happen to us.
Quote about self-help – It’s okay to be afraid of failing, you just can’t let it stop you from trying.
Self-improvement quote – Life is a balance of holding on and letting go.
Self-help quote – Believe in your dreams. They were given to you for a reason.
Quote about self-help – Don’t wait for the perfect moment. Take the moment and make it perfect.
Self-improvement quote – We’d achieve more if we chased our dreams instead of our competition.
Self-help quote – Until you cross the bridge of your insecurities, you can’t begin to explore your possibilities.
Quote about self-help – Sometimes we need someone to simply be there. Not to fix anything, or to do anything in particular, but just to let us feel that we are cared for and supported.
Self-improvement quote – Big things often have small beginnings.
Self-help quote – If you are not willing to risk the usual you will have to settle for the ordinary.
Quote about self-help – The future depends on what you do today.
Self-improvement quote – You can’t change the ocean or the weather, no matter how hard you try, so it’s best to learn how to sail in all conditions.
Self-help quote – Closed doors, rejections. They do not decide your fate, they simply redirect your course, you must keep moving because life’s detours can also be meaningful.
Quote about self-help – It might be stormy right now, but it can’t rain forever.
Self-improvement quote – Close your eyes and imagine the best version of you possible. That’s who you really are, let go of any part of you that doesn’t believe it.
Self-help quote – Nothing is permanent in this world. Not even our troubles.
Quote about self-help – We cannot achieve more in life than what we believe in our heart of hearts we deserve to have.
Self-improvement quote – Letting toxic people go in not an act of cruelty. It’s an act of self-care.
Self-help quote – A tiny step of courage is always a good place to start.
Quote about self-help – Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak. Courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.
Self-improvement quote – Be thankful for what you are now and keep fighting for what you want to be tomorrow.
Self-help quote – You cannot change the people around you, but you can change the people you chooose to be around.
Quote about self-help – What you tell yourself everyday will either lift you up on tears you down.
Self-improvement quote – The only way you are going to experience the beauty of life is to stop obsessing about what’s wrong with it.
Self-help quote – Remember even your worst days only have 24 hours.

Quotes on Depression

Depression quotes and sayings about depression can provide insight into what it’s like living with depression as well as inspiration and a feeling of “someone gets it.” These quotes on depression and depression sayings deal with different aspects of the illness such as grief, sadness, loneliness and other related issues. Feel free to share them on your website, blog or social page for your own enjoyment or to help others.

Quote on depression: “I didn’t want to wake up. I was having a much better time asleep. And that’s really sad. It was almost like a reverse nightmare, like when you wake up from a nightmare you’re so relieved. I woke up into a nightmare.”

Depression quote: “Depression is melancholy minus its charms.”

Quote on depression: “I thought by masking the depression with silence, the feelings might disappear.”

Depression quote: “That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful.”

Quote on depression: “I want to sleep until I feel better.”

Depression quote: “Anyone who has actually been that sad can tell you that there’s nothing beautiful or literary or mysterious about depression.”

Quote on depression: “I am sad all the time and the sadness is so heavy that I can’t get away from it.”

Depression quote: “I feel so disconnected from the world, and I feel like no one even notices me or cares about me anymore.”

Quote on depression: “They ask. “How are you doing?” But what they mean is “Are you over it yet?” My lips say, “Fine, thanks”, but my eyes tell a different story, my heart sings a different tune, and my soul just weeps.”

Depression quote: “It’s so difficult to describe depression to someone who’s never been there, because it’s not sadness.”

Quote on depression: “Somehow, like so many people who get depressed, we felt our depressions were more complicated and existentially based than they actually were.”

Depression quote: “It’s so difficult to describe depression to someone who’s never been there, because it’s not sadness.”

Quote on depression: “Anger, resentment and jealousy doen’t change the heart of others-it only changes yours.”

Quote on depression: “You are allowed to feel messed up and inside out. It doesn’t mean you’re defective – it just means you’re human.”

Depression quote: “There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.”

Quote on depression: “Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”

Depression quote: “Depression isn’t just being a bit sad. It’s feeling nothing. It’s not wanting to be alive anymore.”

Quote on depression: “And I knew it was bad when I woke up in the mornings and the only thing I looked forward to was going back to bed.”

Depression quote: “The only thing more exhausting than being depressed is pretending that you’re not.”

Quote on depression: “It’s not the feeling of completeness I need, but the feeling of not being empty.”

Depression quote: “Depression has nothing to do with having a bad day or being sad.”

Quote on depression: “She was drowning, but nobody saw her struggle”

Depression quote: “My silence is just another word for my pain.”

Quote on depression: “Sometimes I wonder if I will ever be happy with myself. I worry that if I can’t be happy with myself, then nobody will ever be happy with me”

Depression quote: “Sometimes I get so sad. So sad that I completely shut down. I stare blankly at the wall and it doesn’t matter what you say to me. Because in that moment. I don’t exist.”

Quote on depression: “I miss the person I used to be”

Depression quote: “When a depressed person shrinks away from your touch it does not mean she is rejecting you. Rather she is protecting you from the foul, destructive evil which she believes is the essence of her being and which she believes can injure you.”

Quote on depression: “My life is just one constant battle between wanting to be alone, but not wanting to be lonely.”

Depression quote: “That feeling when you’re not necessarily sad, but you just feel really empty.”

Quote on depression: “I’m exhausted from trying to be stronger than I feel.”

Depression quote: “It’s not always the tears that measure the pain. Sometimes it’s the smile we fake.”

Quote on depression: “I want to be happy but something inside me screams that I do not deserve it.”

Depression quote: “I can’t describe what I’m feeling. I’m not happy, and I know that. But I’m also not exactly sad either. I’m just caught right in between all these emotions and I feel so empty.”

Quote on depression: “I want to be happy but something inside me screams that I do not deserve it.”

Depression quote: “The worst kind of pain is when you’re smiling just to stop the tears for falling.”

Quote on depression: “Depression is living in a body that fights to survive, with a mind that tries to die.”

Depression quote: “It’s a bit like walking down a long, dark corridor, never knowing when the light will go on.”

Quote on depression: “Depression is feeling like you’re lost something but having no clue when or where you last had it. Then one day you realize what you lost is yourself.”

Depression quote: “Sometimes just the thought of facing the day, feels like broken glass in my soul.”

Quote on depression: “Saying “I’m tired” when you’re actually sad.”

Depression quote: “Depression is the overwhelming sense of numbness and the desire for anything that can help you make it from one day to the next.”

Quote on depression: “People think depression is sadness, crying or dressing in black. But people are wrong. Depression is the constant feeling of being numb. You wake up in the morning just to go back to bed again.”

Depression quote: “I’m the type of girl who smiles to make everyone’s day. Even though I’m dying on the inside.”

Quote on depression: “I am not living. I am surviving.”

Depression quote: “I hate this feeling. Like I’m here, but I’m not. Like someone cares. But they don’t. Like I belong somewhere else, anywhere but here.”

Quote on depression: “Sometimes you just need someone to tell you you’re not as terrible as yo u think you are.”

Depression quote: “I feel lost inside of myself.”

Quote on depression: “You sometimes think you want to disappear, but all you really want is to be found.”

Depression quote: “I wish I could go back to a time when I could smile and it didn’t take everything in me to do it.”

Quote on depression: “Why does everything always feel worse at night.”

Depression quote: “I define depression as a comparison of your current reality to a fantasy about how you wish your life would be.”

Quote on depression: “Depression makes you isolated. It’s very hard to think of other people when you’re wrapped in a prickly blanket of sadness and all you can think about is your own pain.”

Depression quote: “I’m not sure if I’m depressed. I mean, I’m not sad, but I’m not exactly happy either. I can laugh and joke and smile during the day, but sometimes when I’m alone at night I forget how to feel.”

Quote on depression: “The worst kind of sad is not being able to explain why.”

Depression quote: “Crying is how your heart speaks, when your lips can’t explain the pain you feel.”

Quote on depression: “You hate when people see you cry because you want to be that strong girl. At the same time, though, you hate how nobody notices how torn apart and broken you are.”

Depression quote: “She says she’s fine but she’s going insane. She says she feels good but she’s in a lot of pain. She says it’s nothing but it’s really a lot. she says she’s okay. but really she’s not.”

Quote on depression: “It’s hard to answer the question “What’s wrong?” when nothing’s right.”

Depression quote: “That feeling when you’re not necessarily sad, but you just feel really empty.”

Quote on depression: “And then suddenly I became sad for no reason at all.”

Depression quote: “That’s the thing about depression: A human being can survive almost anything, as long as she sees the end in sight. But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily, that it’s impossible to ever see the end. The fog is like a cage without a key.”

Quote on depression: “When you have depression simply existing is a full time job.”

Depression quote: “Depression is a prison where you are both the suffering prisoner and the cruel jailer.”

Quote on depression: “When you are happy, you enjoy the music. but when you are sad, you understand the lyrics.”

Depression quote: “The most terrible poverty is loneliness, and the feeling of being unloved.”

Quote on depression: “Sometimes, what a person needs is not a brilliant mind that speaks, but a patient heart that listens.”

Depression quote: “Every day begins with an act of courage and hope: getting out of bed.”

Quote on depression: “Depression is a flaw in chemistry not character.”

Depression quote: “There’s nothing more depressing than having it all and still feeling sad.”

Quote on depression: “It’s really sad how one day I’ll seem to have everything going right then the next day I’ll lose everything so fast.”

Depression quote: “Our sorrows and wounds are healed only when we touch them with compassion.”

Quote on depression: “Depression is like a bruise that never goes away. A bruise in your mind.”

Depression quote: “The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it.”

Quote on depression: “Grief is depression in proportion to circumstance; depression is grief out of proportion to circumstance.”

Depression quote: “People don’t die from suicide, they die from sadness.”

Quote on depression: “She hurts and she cries. But you can’t see the depression in her eyes. Because she just smiles…”

Depression quote: “Depression and I are old friends but I do not court his company.”

Quote on depression: “In a strange way, I had fallen in love with my depression.”

Depression quote:”Sometimes i’m sad and tired and miserable for not reason at all.”

Quote on depression: “What is depression like? It’s like drowning. Except you can see everyone around you breathing.”

Depression quote:”I wish I could go back to a time when i could smile and it didn’t take everything in me to do it”

Quote on depression: “I am living in a nightmare, from which from time to time I wake in sleep.”

Depression quote:”My depression is the most faithful mistress I have known—no wonder, then, that I return the love.”

Quote on depression: “So you try to think of someone else you’re mad at, and the unavoidable answer pops into your little warped brain: everyone.”

Depression quote: “Because wherever I sat—on the deck of a ship or at a street café in Paris or Bangkok—I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air.”

Quote on depression: “I don’t want any more of this try, try again stuff. I just want out. I’ve had it. I am so tired. I am twenty and I am already exhausted.”

Depression quote: “That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful”

Quote on depression: “It was almost like a reverse nightmare, like when you wake up from a nightmare you’re so relieved. Iwoke up in to a nightmare.”

Depression quote: “Every man has his secret sorrows wich the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”

Quote on depression: “I’ll never forget how the depression and loneliness felt good and bad at the same time. Still does.”

Depression quote: “When you’re surrounded by all these people, it can be even lonelier than when you’re by yourself. You can be in a huge crowd, but if you don’t feel like you can trust anybody or talk to anybody, you feel like you’re really alone.”

Insightful quote on depression: “When I get lonely these days, I think: So BE lonely, Liz. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person’s body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.”

Depression quote: “During depression the world disappears. Language itself. One has nothing to say. Nothing. No small talk, no anecdotes. Nothing can be risked on the board of talk. Because the inner voice is so urgent in its own discourse: How shall I live? How shall I manage the future? Why should I go on?”

Depression quote: “The teacher wonders but she doesn’t ask, it´s hard to see the pain behind the mas. Bearing the burden of a secret storm. sometimes she wishes she was never born.”

Insightful quote on depression: “All alone! Whether you like it or not, alone is something you’ll be quite a lot!”

Quote on depression: “The same girl who smiles and talks non-stop, is the same one who cries herself to sleep at night.”

Depression quote: “Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it.”

Quote on depression by Rebecca Wells: “Can you reclaim that free-girl smile, or is it like virginity- once you loose it, that’s it?”

Insightful quote on depression: “Maybe she laughs and maybe she cries, and maybe you would be surprised at everything she keeps inside.”

Depression quote: “When I cry about one thing, I end up crying about everything that’s messed up in my life.”

Insightful quote on depression and pain: “I wish it would rain all day, maybe that would make the pain go away.”

Quote on depression by Douglas Adams: “I think you ought to know I’m feeling very depressed.”

Depression quote: “Work is always an antidote to depression.”

Insightful quote on depression: “I don’t want any more of this try, try again stuff. I just want out. I’ve had it. I am so tired. I am twenty and I am already exhausted.”

Quote on depression: “I don’t want to see anyone. I lie in the bedroom with the curtains drawn and nothingness washing over me like a sluggish wave. Whatever is happening to me is my own fault. I have done something wrong, something so huge I can’t even see it, something that’s drowning me. I am inadequate and stupid, without worth. I might as well be dead.”

Quote on depression by Elizabeth Wurtzel: “That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful.”

College Mental Health Crisis

STAFF REPORT—

When I look back at college, I can say with utter certainty that “these were among the best days of my life.”

I was “independent” and “free” (both words I enjoyed using) and I considered myself unfettered by parental monitoring.

I forged new relationships.

I stayed out late.

I had meaningful and existentially provocative conversations with classmates.

I fell in love.

What’s not to like?

Ironically, it turns out that these very features of college – the unfettered independence and developmental exploration that I relished – can make college great for some young people, and at the same time can make college absolutely miserable for others.

When I was in college, there wasn’t much room for the miserable part.  Universities acted like the emotional hardships of being away from home were unusual and rare and administrations largely ignored these issues.

Today, things have definitely changed.

Colleges acknowledge that students experience profound emotional struggles, but colleges have remained largely ill-equipped to help these students.

Let’s look at the good, the bad and the ugly of the college mental health universe.

The Good

There are more opportunities for developmental growth than ever before. Colleges actively recognize the immense variety of ways that young people come of age. There are academic and extra-curricular offerings for people to explore who they are and what values they hold dear. This is especially the case for special programs designed to support women and minorities, programs that we never dreamed would occur as recently as 20 years ago.

The Bad

We’re also seeing increasing drop-out rates, more powerful distractions from the online world, and greater academic and social expectations for students.  Add to this the ever-growing financial challenges for students and parents and the decreased certainty of finding a job, and we have the cliché of the “perfect storm” for the emotional stress of higher education.

The Ugly

As we said above, despite great strides, colleges remain largely ill equipped to negotiate these complex psychosocial waters.

As students in the United States head back to college for the winter term, we’d like to address some of the greatest psychological challenges facing universities and their students. This week we’re going to tackle the most disturbing and unsettling issue in college mental health – the possibility of deliberate self-harm and even suicide among university students.

We don’t want to be too alarmist.  Although suicide attempts on college campuses do appear to be increasing, it is not the case that simply being in college means that someone will more likely consider suicide.  However, because many psychiatric illnesses have their natural onset among college-aged individuals, students are at higher risks when these illnesses coincide with the college-related stressors we’ve outlined above.

Consider these statistics:

  • There are more than 1,000 suicides on college campuses each year – That’s 2-3 deaths by suicide every day
  • Suicide is the second leading cause of death among college-age students
  • More than half of college students have had suicidal thoughts, and 1 in 10 students seriously consider attempting suicide
  • Most importantly: 80-90% of college students who die by suicide were not receiving help from college counseling centers

These are of course alarming statistics. Some have even called this a crisis.  The most important question to ask, therefore, is this:

What can we do to improve the situation?

To answer this question, let’s start by looking at what we know about college suicide.

Attempts at suicide and death by suicide are most common in college students who:

  • Are depressed
  • Are either under the influence of substances, or have a substance use problem
  • Have made a previous attempt
  • Have a family history of a mood disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder
  • Are struggling with a history of trauma

We also know that students often tell others when they’re emotionally struggling, and that teachers, peers and resident assistants are more adept at recognizing emotional distress among struggling students.

Nevertheless, suicidal students often feel helpless, hopeless, and trapped. Some of these students resist seeking help because they’re ashamed.  They might fear a “black mark” on their record or being judged by others.  Even if they don’t have these concerns, they often don’t know what services are available.

Obviously, this is a complex and multi-faceted issue.  We won’t be able to rectify this trend overnight.  But there are steps we can take to ameliorate the risks.  These include:

1.  Establish new educational platforms about depression and suicide.  Key to prevention and early intervention is education about mood disorders and suicide risk.  Some educational initiatives include live and online modules that can be used in a wide range of forums on campus – from dorms to the classroom to campus-wide events. These modules are not just for students; parents and faculty benefit as well.  We also need to be more creative in our educational approaches. For example, a film series on depression and suicide followed by discussion groups could be an incredibly powerful way to educate the community.  There are a number of very informative online sites that can serve as adjuncts to these educational efforts.  Chief among these are Griffin Ambitions, the American Foundation for the Prevention of Suicide and the Jed Foundation.  Another important component includes making students aware of what they can and should do if they are worried about a friend or fellow student. In fact, everyone on campus needs to know where to go and what to do when there are safety concerns.  Each college campus should have a user-friendly website or app that features a clear description of the risk factors for suicide and self harm and explicit advice about how to approach a student about whom there are question

2.  Increase access to mental health services.  Every member of the university community as well as parents and family should know how to seek help on and off campus.  A college website can house all the needed information about these services, including information about clinicians and the nature and coverage provided by insurance.  This information should also include clear directions about how to access the best emergency departments either on campus or in local hospitals if serious concerns are warranted

3.  Support community forums.  Most students struggling with a mental illness or emotional crisis feel alone and frightened.  Study after study tells us that we feel better and safer with social supports.  Providing community forums on a regular basis, and throughout the campus, sends a key message: You are not alone, and something can be done about your suffering.

4.  Foster peer counseling.  Depressed and suicidal students are often more likely to talk with friends than parents, teachers or advisors.  We have seen this demonstrated in the success of the programs like AA for substance use disorders and in support groups for all sorts of emotional and behavioral difficulties.  Organizations such Active Minds, tailored to college students, have been highly effective in the mission of peer counseling.

5.  Decrease the stigma of mental illness.  Perhaps the greatest barrier to seeking help is the fear of being judged or ridiculed. Many individuals still do not believe that depression and mood disorders are illnesses and feel that suicide is a sign of deep personal weakness.  Colleges need to take the lead in dispelling these false beliefs. Treatments for depression are effective, and the entire college community needs to be aware of this fact.

6.  Promote means for increasing student wellbeing.  Depression is often prevented by a number of activities – regular exercise, good sleep habits, substance use awareness programs, group discussions, cognitive behavioral techniques, expressive arts, and discussion groups have all proven helpful. These activities should be encouraged and fostered on college campuses.

Because each college is unique, colleges must tailor these initiatives to their own circumstances, but the benefits of taking action cannot be underestimated.  Colleges can literally save lives. They just have to act.

This blog was originally posted on The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds at Massachusetts General Hospital and includes a podcast reviewing the college mental health crisis.

For additional information please see:

From the Clay Center

When Kids Leave Home: Part 1

When Kids Leave Home: Part 2

Examples of college webpages:

Counseling & Psychological Services – University of Pennsylvania

Mental Health and Well-Being – Cornell University

Dear Teachers & Professors,

An open letter to those in education

Dear teacher(s)  professor(s),

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:

I am a person living with mental illness. Odds are, I’m not the only person in your life who faces this — whether you know it or not. Your knowledge about mental illness may be limited to what the media says, or what society says. With the alarming amount of college students with mental illness these days, I would hope you’ve educated yourself on this topic.

I am a person living with mental illness. I’m also a good student. Yes, I may have missed class, not participated in a discussion or turned something in late, but if that’s all you see then you’re not seeing the whole picture. I’m not asking for excuses or looking for a way to get out of assignments or rules. I would love to be able to adhere to everything without a problem. But I can’t. I have a disability, and even the department that provides accommodations for disabilities doesn’t help much. Aside from the scars on my body and physical symptoms of panic attacks, my illnesses are invisible.

When I don’t come to class, you may see a student who is lazy or didn’t feel like coming. But what you don’t see is the restless night I had tossing and turning with my insomnia. You don’t see the black mass encompassing my entire being some days. You don’t see the fight in my mind between staying alive or giving up. I’m not just lazy. It’s not because I didn’t finish the homework. I wasn’t in class because I couldn’t get out of bed today. I could not face the light of day because my depression had chained me to the darkness of my room.

I had a teacher tell me once it wouldn’t be fair to the people who always made it to class if my absences didn’t affect my grade. At the time, I understood. But looking back now, I realize that makes no sense. Accommodations exist for people with disabilities for a reason. By “understanding” but still penalizing me for something caused by my mental illness, you are keeping me at a disadvantage. It’s not fair to expect I be on par with other students who don’t have the added obstacle of an illness. I promise I’m giving it my all. I’m balancing my recovery and my education at the same time, and I shouldn’t feel like I have to choose. I shouldn’t feel like I can’t do both.

I’m not asking you to never expect me in class or constantly give me extensions. I’m not saying to just let it slide. I’m asking you to be empathetic, understand that I’m a student facing an illness and help me succeed. I’m asking you to not give me a low grade solely because my mental illness prevented me from having a perfect attendance. I’m asking that you look at me as a whole person. I’m asking that you care, and if you can, that you advocate for students like me. I’m a person living with mental illness, and there are so many of us who need your understanding.

-JACOB M. GRIFFIN
BALL STATE UNIVERSITY
FOUNDER OF GRIFFIN AMBITIONS LIMITED, A HOOSIER BASED 501c/3 NON-PROFIT
FOUNDER OF ACTIVE MINDS AT BALL STATE UNIVERSITY