Mental illness is isolating and unfortunately during the time when one most needs to talk, it can be the hardest to find someone to trust,
Fortunately, I am glad to report that in the U.S. there are warmlines. I just discovered them and I wish I had known about them sooner. Warmlines are a number you can call when you need to talk to someone, but you're not in crisis. I think it's wonderful! I can remember calling a suicide hotline several times when I was having suicidal ideations, but I knew I was not going to act on it. Those calls were very frustrating because there was basically nothing that the person could do for me. To my pain, I discovered that they did not want to talk to me if I was not in absolute crisis, which is a shame because talking about anxieties and ideations can prevent them from elevating and it made me feel isolated even more. Like I have written about before, talking about suicidal ideations is an incredibly taboo subject, but talking about them is exactly what diminishes them. A common recovery phrase is that "our secrets make us sicker" and that is definitely true. Talking about our frustrations and impulses towards self-harm or suicide reduces their power and appeal. Having a warmline that I could call when feeling impulsive would make me feel less alone and I would not be worrying whether I am pushing someone away.
People who are LGBT also can feel a double layer of isolation. I recently put together a list of resources for LGBT people in Georgia for a new NAMI mental health support group that is starting this Saturday for the queer population. It is sorely needed-Atlanta has one of the largest gay populations in the U.S. and yet this will be the only free mental health support group for them, which is just shocking. Group details:
First Baptist Decatur Church
1st & 3rd Saturdays
Here are Atlanta and some national LGBT resources for youth and adults:
Youth and Families:
Born This Way Foundation
Lady Gaga's foundation for creating a more inclusive and accepting society
an Atlanta-based nonprofit corporation whose mission is to take homeless LGBT youths to age 26 off the street and transition them into more permanent housing. We operate a 24/7 hotline at 678- 856-7825, a Youth Center, a 6-bed 90 day housing facility, and 3-6 month host home program.
Mission to provide LBGTQ youth and allies the space to be themselves.
The Trevor Project
24/7 hotline for LBGTQ youth in crisis
Parents, friends, and family of lesbians and gays. national support, education and advocacy
organization for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, their families, friends and allies.
Adults with Mental Illness:
Trans Lifeline - 877-565-8860
staffed by transgender people for transgender people in crisis
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