Friday, December 15, 2017

Launching a New Personal Venture

Since I first held a camera in my 8 year old hands, I've been a photo bug. I love color, textures, shapes most of all, and I still try to capture those things today.

I'm excited to announce the launch of an Etsy shop - TMPix - featuring some of my photography in prints and canvas. This will be a continual work in progress, so I'll be adding photos and products regularly. If you have time, I'd love for you to come take a peek and favorite my shop if you are so inclined.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Resources for the Mental Health Journey

In our quest to find help for our loved one dealing with mental illness, I've been provided
with lists of resources. I thought it might be helpful to compile them into one blog post in case others might need access to these resources, too. Some of the resources are located in Georgia, and may be for Georgia residents only, but others are national. If you find something helpful located in GA, I recommend contacting that office to see if someone there knows of anything similar in your own state.


National Alliance for Mental Health - NAMI -

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration - SAMHSA -

Treatment Facilities & Resources:

Georgia Association of Recovery Residences - GARR -
          substance abuse will be primary problem but often mental

24/7 Gateway Center (affiliated with St. Jude’s Mercy Care)


Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No to Take Control of Your Life by Henry Cloud and John Townsend

The Setting Boundaries series of books by Allison Bottke

Finding Your Way After the Suicide of Someone You Love by David Biebel and Suzanne Foster


National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
24/7 suicide prevention number that connects users with a trained counselor at a local crisis center

Crisis TextLine
Text START to 741-741
24/7 volunteer led text support for people in crisis

The Trevor Project
(866) 488-7386
Text: Trevor to 202-304-1200 Thurs-Fri (4-8pm)
24/7 suicide prevention hotline for LGTBQ young people from 13-24


Georgia Crisis & Access Line (operated by Behavioral Health Link)
For Georgia residents wanting access to suicide prevention care

Cobb County & Douglass County Access Center
(770) 422-0202 (M-F 7am-5pm)
A call center for information regarding intake appointments and referrals to mental health services

Dekalb Community Service Board Central Access Line
(404) 892-4646
Crisis line for referrals to the 24/7 Dekalb Regional Crisis Center or other psychiatric services such as outpatient therapy, counseling, and housing

Fulton County Behavioral Access & Information Line
(404) 612-1211 (M-F 8:30-5pm)
Access line to learn how to handle mental health situations and get referrals to mental health services

Gwinnett County Suicide Prevention Hotline
(770) 985-2494
24/7 emergency mental health phone line

VA Mental Health Services
(404) 321-6111 Ext. 7620 (M-F 8am-4:30pm)
Atlanta VA Medical Center's mental health help line for veterans

United Way 211
Access line that connects people to local mental health assistance


Behavioral Health Crisis Center (Cobb County & Douglas County Community Service Board)
(404) 794-4857
Short term crisis stabilization for those dealing with psychiatric problems

DeKalb Regional Crisis Center
(404) 294-0499
Psychiatric emergency room for individuals experiencing psychiatric instability

Project Interconnections, Inc.
2198 Dresden Drive
Chamblee, GA 30341
(404) 325-4572
Supportive housing for individuals who are mentally ill and homeless

Skyland Trail
1961 North Druid Hills Road NE Atlanta, GA 30329 (404) 315-8333
Residential treatment and day treatment to help individuals recover from severe mental illness

St. Jude Recovery Center
(404) 874-2224 (M-F 8am-5pm)
Residential support for those needing mental health and addiction treatment


Cobb Outpatient Services (Bright Changes)
(770) 514-2422
Day services for individuals with persistent mental health problems

Douglas Outpatient Services
(770) 949-8082
Day services for individuals with persistent mental health problems and suicide hotline coordination

North DeKalb Mental Health Center
(770) 457-5867
Day services for adults and children with mental health needs

Fulton County Oak Hill Child, Adolescent & Family Center
(404) 612-4111
Mental health support and children's services

ViewPoint Total Health
Lawrenceville: (678) 209-2411 Norcross: (678) 209-2745
Outpatient services at Gwinnett County locations


Chris Kids
(404) 486-9034
Counseling services for children, adolescent, parents, and families

Heartwork Counseling Center
990 Edgewood Avenue NE Atlanta, GA 30307
(404) 658-1222
Counseling services with some offered on a sliding scale basis

The Link Counseling Center
Sandy Springs Office and The House Next Door
(404) 256-9797 (M-Thurs 10am-9pm Fri 10am-5pm)
Cobb County Office
(770) 541-1114 (M-W 10am-9pm Tues-Thurs 10am-5pm Fri 10am-4pm)
Non-profit community counseling center that offers suicide prevention and aftercare including grief consultations and survivors of suicide support groups

Ser Familia (Cobb County) (678) 363 3079
Counseling for youth, couples, individuals, and families with the focus on strengthening Latino families


American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Georgia
(770) 843-3836
Survivor support events and mental health education programs

DBSA Metro Atlanta
(800) 826-3632
Support groups for those dealing with depression and bipolar disorder

NAMI Georgia
(770) 234-0855
Provides comprehensive listing of all Atlanta area NAMI programs

Neighborhood Union Health Center (Fulton County)
(404) 612-9330
Depression & co-occuring issues group therapy programs as well as mental health screening/treatment planning

Recovery International
Atlanta: Fay (404) 292-4291
Support groups for people with suicidal ideation and other mental illnesses

Viewpoint Health Community Rehabilitation
Five Points 595-D Old Norcross Road Lawrenceville, GA 30046 (770) 995-6901
Peer led groups and activities to encourage independence and advocacy


Mental Health America of Georgia
100 Edgewood Avenue
Suite 502
Atlanta, GA 30303
(404) 527-7175
Mental health screening, mental health first aid training, project healthy moms, and respect institute

Perimeter Suicide Prevention & Mental Health Ministry (Fulton County)
(678) 405-2277
Marti Vogt:
Mental health first aid training, support groups, and faith coalition around mental health

Mental Health Phone Numbers

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (800) 826-3632
NAMI Georgia (770) 234-0855
National Mental Health Information Center (800) 789-2647
Partnership for Prescription Assistance (888) 477-2669
United Way First Call 2-1-1
Medicare (800) 633-4227
Social Security Administration (800) 772-1213
Georgia Crisis and Access Line (800) 715-4225
National Strategy for Suicide Prevention (800) 273-TALK
Mercer Family Therapy (Lower-Cost Counseling) (678) 547-6789

Mental Health Links

CenterWatch Clinical Trials Listing Service
Emory Child and Adolescent Mood Program
Emory Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program
Emory Psychological Center (Lower-Cost Counseling)
Georgia Advocacy Office

Georgia Certified Peer Specialist Program
Georgia Crisis and Access Line/Resources
Georgia Mental Health Consumer Network
GSU Psychology Clinic (Lower-Cost Counseling)
MEDLINEplus Health Information
Mental Health America
NAMI Georgia
Partnership for Rx Assistance
Project Interconnections, Inc.
Recovery International
Skyland Trail
The Link Counseling Center
(Lower-Cost Counseling)

Friday, December 8, 2017

Along the Mental Health Journey

Our loved one has only had a mental illness diagnosis a short time, so we've only just begun navigating on this journey toward wellness and functionality.

But we've already learned some things that might help others on the same journey.

1) You are not alone. There are others - many others - who have loved ones who suffer from mental health issues - you just may have to open yourself up and share a little of your story to encourage others to speak out.

2) Extended family and friends cannot actually understand what you are going through if they themselves don't have an immediate family member going through the same thing. I'm sorry - they just can't and don't understand. And that's okay. Most of the time.

3) As extended family, they're probably not actively involved in the treatment plans, so most of the time, it's okay that they don't understand. But this can become a problem - as I've recently discovered - when extended family or friends try to intervene in the treatment plan or try to circumvent the treatment plans in place because they don't know what's going on or they don't like what's going on. That's when you - the first line of defense - need to take action and set boundaries with those people, for you and for your love one.

4) Boundaries are a good thing. Yes, I learned that years ago, but apparently, I've needed a refresher course. It's okay - and healthy - to set boundaries.

5) Take the time you need to take care of yourself in the midst of crisis. A lengthy shower or bath, a walk in the woods, a long drive, extended prayer, scheduled naps - it's okay to decompress.

Related Articles:

Resources for the Mental Health Journey
Never Give Up Hope
Hope and Tough Love

Other Articles of Interest:

Love Letters from the Heart Re-Released
A Pixel Perfect Christmas Re-Released

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