Identity

All posts tagged Identity

More Reasons

Published May 12, 2017 by It's me!

So, I had a long talk with a friend today. It made me realize that there is so much more that I could have said in my last post, and I need to say it now.

At one point after Th1rteen R3asons Why became popular, the school district sent out an email that they didn’t believe that the show covered the real reason behind suicide well enough. They felt that it should have addressed the mental health of Hannah, not just what people are considering her “revenge.” My friend asked me, since I have been through it, how I felt the show/book covered what I went through.

Tears came to my eyes as I thought about what I went through so that I would be able to give a thorough answer to her question. Honestly, I feel that the show does put Hannah’s mindset into perspective. I don’t feel that it should be looked at that she was trying to get revenge on her bullies. I put myself in her place as I thought about it. If it were me, I wouldn’t have done it for revenge. I would have done it to let them know that this is why I did what I did. To let them know that what they did led me to kill myself. To let them know so that they could change. So that they would know that their behavior was unacceptable. Maybe it would help someone else by me outing their behavior. Bullies need to be made aware of their actions and how their actions effect others.

Do I believe someone’s mental health causes them to commit suicide? Yes, but I believe it depends on the situation. There was recently a boy that hanged himself after his girlfriend faked her own suicide online and through friends on social media. This was a boy who, according to his mother, was happy and active that just decided that he was going to kill himself because his girlfriend did. Was he suffering from mental illness? Not that his mother seemed to be aware of. It was a decision he made out of grief. It wasn’t thought out. He just did it after letting her friends know that he was going to do the same thing that he thought that she did.

I realize that mental illness is a thing. I am bipolar and depressive with extreme anxiety. Tons of fun, let me tell ya. My mental illness may have played a part in my suicide attempts when I was younger, but the bullying is what pushed me to it. Having people tell you over and over that you are worthless and ugly and stupid and a suck up and spread stupid rumors about you definitely hurts. You get to the point that you don’t want to hear it anymore. You can’t deal with it anymore. You feel that you are all of those things. You become all of those things. Someone telling you that they don’t believe you really have a boyfriend because no one could ever like you. A teacher saying that the reason people always pick at you is “Because you are standing there.” I have laughed at that comment that was made by my teacher, only so that no one knew how much it really bothered me. What really irritates me about it, is that he was the teacher that told the principal that I had attempted suicide. He knew. He knew that I had low self-esteem and no confidence in myself. He knew everything, but he said it anyway.

Returning to the accuracy of Th1rteen R3asons Why

The portrayal of her actual suicide is very real. It was extremely hard to watch. I will admit, I was rather clueless when I attempted. Did you know that there is a right way and a wrong way to slit your wrists? I didn’t. I did it the wrong way. The show portrays the right way. If there is a child out there watching this show, and they don’t know how it all works, this show is going to tell them how to do it.

I fully believe that any parent that knows that their child/teen is watching or has watched the show or is reading or has read the book, the parent needs to do the same and make sure the lines of communication are open. Talk to your kids. Let them know that there is another option. Let them know they can come to you if they have problems or concerns or bullies or suicidal thoughts. WE NEED TO BE AWARE! Pay attention to your kids. Watch and listen.

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To all of the bullies: YOU need to be aware! Be aware of how you treat people. Be aware of how your behavior effects others. You know the saying. “You never know what someone is going through. Be kind. Always.” (There are too many variations–I wasn’t able to find who said it.)

Kids are mean. I don’t know why, but they are. I don’t think I will ever understand it.

We need to take control of the situation and encourage our kids to talk to us. We need to be approachable. They need to know that they aren’t going to be judged if they come to talk to us. We need to have an open mind and help them work through their issues. Bullying others needs to stop. Please talk to your kids. Please pay attention to them. There are so many crying out for help, and we just aren’t noticing.

What are the warning signs?

  • Talking About Dying — any mention of dying, disappearing, jumping, shooting oneself, or other types of self harm
  • Recent Loss — through death, divorce, separation, broken relationship, self-confidence, self-esteem, loss of interest in friends, hobbies, activities previously enjoyed
  • Change in Personality — sad, withdrawn, irritable, anxious, tired, indecisive, apathetic
  • Change in Behavior — can’t concentrate on school, work, routine tasks
  • Change in Sleep Patterns — insomnia, often with early waking or oversleeping, nightmares
  • Change in Eating Habits — loss of appetite and weight, or overeating
  • Fear of losing control – acting erratically, harming self or others
  • Low self esteem — feeling worthless, shame, overwhelming guilt, self-hatred, “everyone would be better off without me”
  • No hope for the future — believing things will never get better; that nothing will ever change(http://www.apa.org/research/action/suicide.aspx)

Need help or know someone that does?

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK 

https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/#

 

 

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Who am I? (Part 2)

Published May 5, 2016 by It's me!

When I wrote part 1, I never intended a part 2. Then, a couple of days after I wrote it, my devotional was along the same line. The title–“I am ____.” Same thing Sunday at church. Same message. Same question. I am thinking I should probably continue and answer that question.

In Exodus 3:14, after being asked by Moses whom he should say sent him to request the release of the Israelites, God told Moses to tell them that “I am” sent him. How does this explain who God is? Because God is. He is everything. He is in everything. Now, why does this need an explanation? Because we are anchored by our perceptions of what we are. We need another word to follow “am” to identify ourselves.

So. Who am I? I have thought about this a lot over the years. I have identified as many things. Most of the time, I have identified with the things that people have told me that I am. I am worthless. I am stupid. I am a horrible person. I am hateful. I am a bad mother. I am fat. So many identities that were given to me by others, and I believed them. I believed them to the point of attempting to commit suicide. I believed them to the point of wanting to run away and never come back.

What was said during Sunday’s sermon hit me. “You are not defined by what others say. You are defined by what Jesus says.” That is so true, but I have never chosen to look at it that way. I have always chosen to see myself as others have. But they aren’t important. What they say isn’t important. What God says. What Jesus says. THAT is what is important.

I am a daughter of the King. I am beautiful. I am smart. I am a normal mom doing the best I can with what I have. I am blessed. I am loved.

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We all struggle with out identity because of the ridiculous standards placed on us by society. I am choosing to ignore who society says I am and who I should be. I am choosing to focus on who God says that I am. I am His creation. I am here for Him, not society. I am here to show His love to society by being who He made me to be–a daughter of the King.

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