COVID-19 Support

1. Check out CDC.com for their Mental Health and Coping tips. These situations can definitely affect our mental health and increase anxiety.
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/coping.html

2. Listen to the Be the One podcast with Aaron & Vonnie. Inspiring guests share their stories on how mental health has affected them and how we can be the one for someone. Click here.

3. Download i understand therapy pages for you and your family to distract your mind through coloring. Click here.

4. Journaling is very therapeutic as there is power putting pen to paper. By doing so, you organize your thoughts, express creativity and can aid in your emotional healing.
Receive a free i understand journal book and pen by pre-ordering - i understand love, pain and healing after suicide on Amazon. Simply send purchase receipt to - info@iunderstandloveheals.org
https://www.amazon.com/Understand-Pain-Healing-after-Suicide/dp/0802878040

5. Check out, sign our definition petition and change the way you talk about suicide. 

6. Check out the Vonnie tab and listen and share her reading of her book, Marshmallow Clouds. Click here. 


i understand believes that one important step to eliminating the stigma of suicide is to change the definition of the word itself. Updating the stigmatizing definition about intentionally taking one’s own life to one about suicide’s role as a terminal side effect of mental illness or pain will open up conversation about mental health and encourage those who are struggling to seek help.

We can get through it! We will get through it even when it feels like we are pushing through a boulder. 

HOW TO HELP THOSE WHO ARE STRUGGLING

1. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK IF THEY ARE SUICIDAL.

 When somebody you know is in emotional pain, ask them directly: “Are you thinking 

about harming yourself or do you have a plan?”

2. KEEP THEM SAFE.

 Stay by their side as long as you need to. Remove all items that could be used for an attempt from your home.

3. LISTEN.

 To feeling hopelessness with compassion and empathy and without dismissing or judging.

4. HELP THEM CONNECT.

 Create support around them, anyone who they can reach out to for help.

5. BE THE ONE.

 Stay in touch with them in the days and weeks after a crisis can make a difference, 

it could even save their life.

TIPS FOR THOSE WHO ARE LIVING WITH SOMEONE STRUGGLING

1. UNDERSTAND.

 Suicidal thoughts can be fear based and those struggling do NOT have to have a mental health illness diagnosis. 

2. LOOK FOR SIGNS.

Is your loved one is talking about suicide, self medicating, withdrawn or defiant they could be at risk.

3. ASK THE QUESTIONS.

Do you have a plan? Are you thinking of hurting yourself? Asking can save their life. 

4. PROVIDE SUPPORT AND RESOURCES.

 Let them know you care and help is available. Treat pain like you would any other illness. Get to the root cause, talk about, seek professional help, medication and therapy are all forms of support.

5. TAKE CARE OF YOU.

 Find quiet moments to meditate, talk to others, eat healthy and get out for fresh air.

FOTU

Fear of the Unknown

 Anxiety is at an all time high with so many uncertainties, challenges and change surrounding us. As i understand is hearing from those who are struggling based on fear of so many factors the biggest fear, seems to be that of the unknown.


Can this “fear of the unknown” or “FOTU20” ultimately become an epidemic of it’s own? There have been over 37 million who have filed for unemployment. The fear of job security, paying bills, the diminishing 401k’s seem to have created the most common fear in many – will I be able to support my family? That then spirals downward to; will we lose our home, how will we pay our bills, do we have enough money to buy food?


Along with the massive fear of job security, there are many that faced anxiety and depression far before the corona virus, only adding to daily stresses of many families are navigating working from home while kids need schooling are finding it very difficult to find alone time and ways to self care.


One of i understands largest passions is continuing to bring compassionate comfort and understanding to everyday places along with changing the conversation.

We need to understand. We need to know if you are feeling fear? What type of fear are you feeling? What coping mechanisms have you put in place that is reducing fear?

Share your thoughts: info@iunderstandloveheals.org 

Understanding fear

*Fear: an unpleasant feeling triggered by the perception of danger, real or imagined.

  Feelings of fear are beginning to take a toll on many of us as we live through COVID19 and a pandemic that is plaguing our country. It’s more important than ever to start understanding our fear and how we can tackle this fear before it gets a hold of us and causes further damage to our mental health and emotional well being.

We all have experienced fear whether it is a chosen fear such as watching a scary movie, a roller coaster ride or bungee jumping. These types of fears cause excitement, often times we go back for more as 

we experience a thrill or adrenaline rush. 

There is also a fear that can come with everyday life. We teach our kids to look both ways before they cross the street for a fear that they may 

run in front of a car. We lock the doors to our home in fear that someone could break in. Our natural born instincts help protect us from these fears, we are taught or self taught how to handle each one. If we have a fear of water – the first step is staying away from lakes, ponds or pools. We create our own protection, yet how do we even go beyond the basic protection? If we use fear of water as an example – the next step would be swimming lessons. We find an instructor and take lessons until we or we feel our child is safe, we are comforted in the fact that we have taken the necessary steps and learned some tools to combat fear through the lessons from an experienced swim instructor.

The “fear of the unknown” is what many of us are experiencing now as we have never been in this place of worldwide illness, social distancing and the effects that the unknown is having on us.

How do we win the battle of the fear of the unknown, with so much uncertainty and no “swimming instructor” to help us through to a safe place, we worry. The most common suggestion from everyone is “connect” we need to connect more than ever with each other yet many of us are saying we are fine when we are not fine and need more support than what connection can give us.

Tips to combat feAR

Recognize fear

 Begin to recognize your fear by analyzing what you are most worried or anxious about. What is causing you fear? 

Ask yourself some questions

 Ask yourself; how deep is my fear? Does my fear bring thoughts of wanting to harm myself? Is my fear justified? Am I losing sleep thinking about my fear? Listen to your own answers to see just how much your fear is affecting your daily life.

Self-Advocate

If fear is getting the best of you, now is not the time to keep things to yourself. You must speak up and let someone know your feelings. One of the best things we can do for ourselves is to take care of ourselves. Find a trusted friend or a family member that you can share your feelings with.

Write your fears down

Take time to write your fears down, writing will help you to organize your thoughts and allow you to process stress and how you feel. Writing your fears and thoughts down can help you gain control of your emotions while helping reduce your stress level.

Acceptance

As we say often say, “acceptance is the key”. The first step to survival is acceptance. We must accept our situation for what it is, if we ignore or push it away or let it control us – we may make our situation much worse. By not accepting we are choosing denial. Denial is a safe place to be for many yet, with denial can come self-medicating, loss of sleep, reckless activity and blaming others. 

Understand

 We know that some things we may never understand yet it’s important to know that you are not alone. Know that help is available if you’re willing to recognize and accept the help that is needed.

Call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1.800.273.8255

If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, the Lifeline network is available 24/7 across the United States.