Safety Plan

This month’s 8th of the month post . . .

I’m writing this one because I have something important that needs to be said.

Have a safety plan.

Know your warning signs.

Even if your thoughts don’t typically get “that dark” and you don’t think you’re a danger, who would you call if things did slip into suicidal territory?

What are your warning signs for depression, for mania, for unhealthy behaviors, for slipping back into a relapse of any sort. How do you know you’re walking away from the healthy behaviors that have served you well.

Have a safety plan.

Right now, I know that any of my dangerous medications can’t be under my control. I keep enough for a few days, and the rest are locked up out of my reach. I have to ask for what I need.. If I start wanting to hoard them, I tell on myself and make sure to get them out of my hands. People know when I’m going to the pharmacy so I have accountability.

I don’t keep any medication in my room, it’s too easy.

I know who I can call when things get bad and who won’t be helpful, I have the hotline numbers saved in my phone. I’ve texted the crisis text line and called the suicide hotline when things are not overwhelmingly bad so that I’m more likely to text or call when they are overwhelming. I’ve had long talks with my therapist about the fact that she’s willing to get texts off hours.

I have the local crisis response number in my phone and they have my information on file in case I need a crisis response team to come out. I’d rather call them instead of 911 because their police response is trained in dealing with mental health care. Do you have a crisis response team near you? Do you know how to reach them?

I keep pictures of loved ones on my phone, inspirational quotes on my walls, I have things around me that remind me to live and why I live.

I keep a running list of things to do instead of ruminating on suicidal ideation, I try to distract myself with those things.

I am constantly working on keeping myself safe and alive. But a lot of us don’t think about a safety plan until we’re in a crisis that we think will never happen. Take some time and think about it, what are you going to do if you face a mental health emergency. For some people, suicidal thoughts come out of no where, especially if you have any history of mental illness, but even without a history.

Just some thoughts as another 8th of the month passes without Parker in this world.

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