asha international mental health

We Give Hope

My story – surviving the loss of my beloved daughter Priya

My story – surviving the loss of my beloved daughter Priya

    My name is Geetha Balagopal.   My beloved daughter Priya was lost to suicide on January 10th 2016 during her 4th suicide attempt. Priya was a beautiful girl, a quiet, introverted, brilliant and dignified child, who excelled in whatever activity she participated in.  The anxiety was always there but I was not aware of it.  She was bullied in school and it started very early – in Kindergarten.  I never knew about it.  She didn’t have many friends but got calls from classmates who needed help with homework.  During the summer of her junior year in high school, she told me that she has OCD.  My response was “you have too much time on your hands disorder” Having been raised in a culture where you are conditioned to “just do what is required without complaining”- I didn’t realize the seriousness of it. Priya left home when she was 15 and a half years old to join the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, (a boarding school for highly gifted high school kids) around the same time she told me that she had OCD.  She only came home one day a month – and she only called or texted if she needed supplies or food.  She made new friends, fell in love with Indian dance and I was happy for her. One day in early 2009, I was driving Priya back to school –about to merge on the highway, when she said that she feels hopeless and that “life is not worth living”.  I almost ran off the road but kept my voice calm and asked her why...

To Live or Die: Creating Compassion & Preventing Suicide

                      Healthcare providers are an at-risk population for stress, vicarious traumatization, burnout, as well as mental illness including depression and suicide. When the healthcare system, and we as healthcare students and providers, can understand and accept the fact that we are all “human” without shame, it is more likely that those in mental health need will be empowered to seek out and receive help. Experience how sharing mental health stories inspires hope and can help save lives. Please join ASHA Storyteller Diane Leslie Kaufman, MD at the Grand Rounds:… Meeting password: Kv6MAp82P3e Phone (audio only): 1-206-207-1700 US & 1-503-907-9144 Portland, OR...
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