You'll have seen around the blogosphere (hopefully) that RUOK day is coming up, on September 15th.
From their website (for they can say it better than I):
Thursday 15 September, 2011 is R U OK?Day. It’s a national day of action which aims to prevent suicide by encouraging Australians to connect with someone they care about and help stop little problems turning into big ones.For many in the Australian blogosphere (particularly Australian mothers), this topic has become very close to home, following the heartbreaking death of Lori's beloved Tony in January.
On that day we want everyone across the country, from all backgrounds and walks of life, to ask family, friends and colleagues: "Are you OK?".
Staying connected with others is crucial to our general health and wellbeing. Feeling isolated or hopeless can contribute to depression and other mental illnesses, which can ultimately result in suicide. Regular, meaningful conversations can protect those we know and love.
It's so simple. In the time it takes to have a coffee, you can start a conversation that could change a life.
For some of us though, this topic has been close to our hearts for longer. For we are the sufferers, or the children, partners or parents of sufferers of mental illness. We are people who have contemplated, or know people who have committed suicide. I am both. I have been on both sides of this ugly battle.
I have helped care for my mother through a major depressive episode which saw her desperate to end her life. I have had to stay a step or more ahead of her as she outsmarted trained professionals in her hospital (one of Brisbane's best private psychiactric hospitals).
And of course, as some of you know, I have this battle with the black dog myself. Almost a decade of severe depression (on and off, but more on than off, admittedly), anxiety disorders and a diagnosis of Bipolar 2 about 2 years ago. Suicide has been on my mind so often, I barely know how to tell you.
So I plan, of course, to do a post leading up to September 15th, to talk more about this subject. In all honesty, I've been in a pretty bad place, and am having some difficulty talking about it. Because to be honest with you. I'm not ok. I'm not nearly ok at the moment. I'm drifting out to as not-ok as I have been in quite some time.
But I want you to read this post in the mean time. I wrote it a couple of years ago. It is one of the most important (in my opinion) posts I have ever written on this blog. It is one of the closest to my heart. I ask that you read it, think about it, and if you are so compelled, to share it.
I will be back with a newer post on the subject soon.