Checklist

Want to Share Your Story for Mental Health Month? Check This First

This is a fantastic resource that I wanted to share with you.

Choosing to tell your story for the first time or to a more public audience is not a decision you want to take lightly. Many of us who have done it and are “public” about our past or current issues can tell you that while there are great things that can come from sharing, there are also things you should be prepared for.

I’ll be the first to admit that I was not prepared for things. As much as I have never regretted starting this site and sharing my story, there have been times when it’s been a bit awkward. Times I did not think enough about ahead of time and might have handled differently if I had thought more about it.

So, with that in mind, let me share this resource from the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:

Storytelling for Suicide Prevention Checklist

 

In their own words:

The decision to share one’s lived experience with suicide may feel scary – especially the first time you share it. While the decision to share should not be taken lightly, your experiences do not need to fit into a perfect set of steps or pathway in order to be meaningful. If you are considering sharing your story, we recommend that you use this storytelling checklist to help determine how to share your story safely and effectively – for yourself and others.

This checklist incorporates recommendations from Vibrant Emotional Health (National Suicide Prevention Lifeline), the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Suicide Prevention Resource Center, Suicide Awareness Voices in Education, and the Activating Hope website.

This is focused on sharing your lived experience with suicide, but I looked through some of the checklist items and resources here and I saw a lot of similarities in the advice I would give to abuse survivors too. These are important considerations, please take some time to look at the checklist, think about the things they’ll ask you to think about, and make the best decision for you. If that is to wait before telling, so be it. I support that. If it’s to go ahead and tell your story, I support that too and wish you the best.

Regardless, understand that it’s your story. You decide if, and when, you tell it.

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