Monthly Archives: April 2012

Alcohol and antidepressants do not mix. Anyone with a mental illness like depression, bipolar disorder or schizophrenia should stay far, far away from alcohol, whether they are on antidepressants or not. If you want to successfully manage your depression, than do not drink alcohol if you are taking an antidepressant. If you haven’t a care about your mental illness and want to become suicidal while taking a depressant then bottoms up….

Read the rest of my article at Yahoo! Voices.  Thanks!


Social media (everyone’s favorite dumping-ground for the ills of modern society) has been blamed for a lot of suicides over the past few years.  Places like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, internet forums and chat rooms can become savage weapons in the hands on cyber bullies.  Teenagers in particular seem vulnerable to suicide after constant bullying (which may include bullying online and at school/college or in the neighborhood.)

These same social media sites blamed for suicides can be used to help prevent suicides.  The one advantage of social media is that there are far more eyes looking in on an online diary than a conventional diary.  Any post that seems to be a suicide note has a large audience.  For example, people can notify Facebook employees about posts that indicate that a person may be about to commit suicide.

This can backfire, but this backfire is more of a brief annoyance than anything else.  For example, a couple of years ago, I made a joke on a writers’ forum that the best way for me to get more page views for my online articles was to commit suicide.  (I know — I shouldn’t quit my day job.)  A couple of hours later, the police showed up at my doorstep and they did not see the joke.  But it shows that I have a reader somewhere.

To learn more about social media being used as a suicide prevention tool, check out The Atlantic’s article Using Social Media to Prevent Suicide.  Or skim it, at least.

Keep on writing….and try not to make any bad jokes about killing yourself.

Suicidal depression is not a modern phenomenon.  What the heck do you think Shakespeare was writing about when he wrote Hamlet?  Of course, it wasn’t called depression back then.  Ennui or melancholy were the usual terms.

Hamlet was acting insane during the course of the play to avoid being killed by his murderous stepfather, the King of Denmark.  But even in times when he confides to the audience, he shows his depression through his indecisiveness and his dwelling about death.

For those of you not familiar with Hamlet’s soliloquy (often called the “To be or not to be” speech) is basically is Hamlet wondering out loud whether he should kill himself.  By the way, a “bare bodkin” refers to the blade of a knife, not a nubile young wench.  If you have never seen Hamlet’s  soliloquy done properly, look to David Jacobi’s 1976 interpretation.

Normally, the words “positive” and “mental breakdown” does not appear together in the same sentence. Mental breakdowns can be humiliating, terrifying and potentially deadly for not only the patient but for the patient’s loved ones. People that suffer a mental breakdown are often castigated by society for being somehow less than a human being. But patients that recover from a mental breakdown, or more than one breakdowns, can take comfort in some aspects of their experiences….

Read the rest of my article at Yahoo! Voices. Thanks!

Depression is a mental illness and right there with the words “mental illness”, people’s eyes widen and they shift just a little further away from you. Although the facts about clinical depression are becoming more common knowledge, this has become a double-edged sword for many depressives. They fear that others will stigmatize them for having a mental illness…

Read the rest of my article at Yahoo! Voices.  Thanks!

Because depression affects thoughts and sensations so strongly, it can be difficult to recognize that these thoughts and feelings are symptoms of depression. Sometimes, people with clinical depression are genuinely surprised when they are finally diagnosed with depression, even though they may have shown all of the classic signs for years. But there are ways to tell that you may have depression and need to go see a doctor.

Read the rest of my article at Yahoo! Voices.  Thanks!