Hello, I hope this letter finds all of you happy and well. I am writing this letter to share a story with you…my story.
I suffer from severe depression. Last October the pain from that depression got to be more than I could handle. I felt alone and couldn’t see a way out, so I tried to take my own life. I was lucky enough to have a good friend who called 911 and got me to a hospital in time. I was then admitted to the psych ward at McKay-Dee Hospital for a little over a week. While I was there, I was able to meet with the right kind of doctors and get on the right kind of medications to help me. I also was taught some very important life-saving principles through different group and one- on-one therapy sessions. I tried very hard to keep what I had done a secret. I didn’t want people to know I had attempted suicide. I felt ashamed and thought others would judge me because of it. Then I heard about the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, AFSP, and their Out of the Darkness Awareness program. I realized that there is nothing to be ashamed about and that by sharing my story I may be able to help others who are struggling.
On September 26, 2009, I will be joining with hundreds of people nationwide to walk in AFSPs Out of the Darkness Community Walk in Salt Lake City. The AFSP is at the forefront of research, education, and prevention initiatives designed to reduce loss of life from suicide. With more than 33,000 lives lost each year in the U.S. and over one million worldwide, the importance of this work has never been greater or more urgent. I am participating in this walk to help raise suicide awareness in the community. I know there are many others out there suffering from depression and other similar issues that may still be hiding in the darkness of their own pain and need the help of others to reach out to them and bring them into the light of healing. I would not be here today without the help of family, friends, and competent doctors. My hope is that through education and awareness we can erase the stigma surrounding suicide and its causes, and encourage those suffering with a mental illness to seek help.
Many of us have been affected by suicide in some way whether it is a family member, friend, co-worker, classmate, or ourselves. I would appreciate any support that you can give me for this worthwhile cause. Any contribution will help the work of AFSP, and all donations are 100% tax deductible. You may either donate online, or you may send a check (made payable to AFSP) to: AFSP, 120 Wall Street, 22nd Floor, New York, NY 10005. Please write my name and walk city (Salt Lake City) in the memo line of all checks. If you would like you may also send the check to me and I can mail it into to AFSP for you. To make an online donation please click the link below and you will be taken to my fundraising page. For more information you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (801) 645-6112.
Thank you for your support!