WeirdDarkness Suicide/Depression

$2,240 of $2,000 goal

Raised by 75 people in 7 months

Darkness is fine for entertainment, but when it creeps into our real lives it can be devastating.  As the creator/host of Weird Darkness , and a survivor of clinical depression myself, I know the struggle is real. 

To mark the anniversary of the existence of the Weird Darkness podcast, during the month of October I'll be asking listeners, fans, and Weirdos to give what they can to support the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline .

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  No matter where you live, you can pick up the phone to speak with someone immediately (1-800-273-8255), or go to their website and chat online  with someone who cares and wants to help.

Most likely every single person who listens to my podcast or is reading this message has been affected by suicide and/or depression in some way - a loved one, a friend, maybe even in the immediate family.  You may personally be struggling with depression yourself. 

My guess is that many people who are drawn to dark stories such as those I share in the podcast may be more prone to depression or thoughts of harming themselves.  I want to give them a hand to grasp to help pull themselves out of the dark and into the beautiful world life can be.

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I received another couple of messages today from people reaching out for help for their loved ones or for themselves.  When I began this fundraiser I simply thought it would be a good way to give back to the community in a way that would make a difference - and I figured anyone who is attracted to dark stories might be more susceptible to depression.  But I had no idea how on the nose that would be...
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I wanted to share this email - along with my reply - here in the fundraiser. This is what the fundraiser is for, these are the people who can benefit from it.

Dear Darren, Thank you for helping to raise money for depression and suicide prevention, as I write this my 16-year-old son is in mental health facility getting free treatment as we have no insurance at this time . He suffers from depression and was baker acted Friday because of a suicide attempt, I am devastated but I am grateful that such a facility exists. I love your show and I love that you are so open about your depression, it is so often an embarrassment and swept under the rug, which is why many people do not get help. Thanks again and keep up the amazing work your awesome and no matter what a few negative people think ...do not change your show everything about it is great !!!! I love the bible verses.  Your fellow weirdo -- Callie -- Ps any tips on coping skills and meds that help ?

Hello, Callie.  I am so sorry to hear about your son.  That is truly awful.  I do hope he gets the help he needs there.  I think mental health experts are definitely the right thing for someone whose depression is severe to the appoint of hurting themselves.  I have been extremely fortunate in that mine has never been to that level.  I am not a doctor so I can only tell you what has worked for me - which is what I am sure you are asking.  Honestly, nothing helped UNTIL I got meds.  No amount of sleep, watching comedy TV shows, etc. did any good - because it’s not your mood that is the problem, it’s your brain chemistry.  If your son is in a mental health facility I’d imagine that would have to have the right pharmaceuticals there.  We tried a few drugs but found that for me personally, Citalopram worked well.  I was okay for a couple of years with that, but then my depression began to get worse so he also added Bupropion. Citalopram has a calming effect so I take it at bedtime, and Bupropion has an uplifting kind of effect so I take it in the morning.  The two combined seem to be working very well for me right now.  That being said, nothing is foolproof and permanent.  I still have extremely stressful days - especially now that I’m doing a daily podcast - I really put pressure on myself with that so it’s all my fault.  So it’s important to take time to shut off the brain entirely - again, for me at least.  So every Saturday I walk away from the computer, I turn off Facebook messenger, and I veg in front of the TV to mindless movies and shows that are just entertaining.  Also, getting enough sleep is crucial.  I am someone who needs 8-10 hours of sleep per day, and if I don’t get it I can feel the depression kicking back in - sometimes with the headaches that can occur with depression.  For someone whose depression is as severe as that of your son, it’s important he has someone to talk with who can relate to what he’s going through.  Nobody truly understands depression unless they have it themselves.  It’s just one of those things that you really can’t explain to someone without them being there.  So maybe he’ll find someone at the facility he is in, or perhaps he can find a friend who also suffers.  When he’s feeling particularly weak, having someone to call/text could literally be a lifesaver.  I have a friend here in my area who’ll call when she is particularly bad - and she called a LOT until she met someone and got married… to someone who also has depression.  Now they can lift each other up.  If nothing else, call the helpline: 800-830-9804.  There is someone there 24-hours a day, 365 days a year, and most of the people answering the phone have the same issues and have found help, which is why they are qualified to answer the calls.  They also deal with substance abuse. If your son has a substance abuse problem on top of the depression, you can also call 800-831-1560, as they specialize in cases of both combined.  You can find both of these numbers on the sponsors page at WeirdDarkness.com if you need them in the future.  This was a pretty lengthy response but I do hope it helps -your email has simply reaffirmed how important of an issue this is.  Thanks, Callie – and I’ll be praying for you and your son tonight.  -- Darren
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Depression is a demon. I don't mean that in the literal sense of the word (although that can happen), but in the way it presents itself - always rearing its ugly head when you least expect it, when it will do the most damage or cause the most turmoil, hitting you when you are already weak, tired, and worn down. Thoughts of suicide can often accompany it.
I won't give any names or details, but over the weekend I received three different message from three different people who dealt with severe issues. One was fighting depression and reached out to me, a stranger, simply because of my podcast and campaign. Another was a friend of mine seriously contemplating suicide despite having so much to live for (they are fine now). And a third was a listener of my podcast who had tried suicide in years past, and they told me how they were in the tornado of activity of helping a friend who had just tried to commit suicide.
This weekend showed me just how important it is to find a way to battle depression. It's a psychological condition for some, a medical condition for others, and it's hard to treat because everyone is different. But, like diseases such as cancer and heart disease, it is destroying lives and even taking lives in many cases.
This fundraiser will be donated to those on the front lines - those taking the calls from those who are in crisis and need immediately help/counseling. It's during these moments of brief interaction over the phone, decisions of life and death are made - and only one life is chosen can those who are suffering begin to seek help and treatment.
I've said it several times during this campaign on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and in my podcast - we all know someone who fits the description I just gave above. For those who give, it's not someone on the other side of the world you will never see or meet - your donation is helping someone sitting next to you at work, school, or church... or in many cases... at home.
Thanks to everyone who has already given. Please continue to spread the word about this campaign; tell people your story - why you are affected by depression/suicide. The more we talk about it, the more we can bring depression out of the darkness and shine a light on it so it can be focused on more to bring help and hope to those who need it. Thank you. --- Darren Marlar (WeirdDarkness.com)
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WOW! We just hit the halfway mark and it's only October 7th! Thank you so much to everyone who has donated so far - I greatly appreciate ALL of you!
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$2,240 of $2,000 goal

Raised by 75 people in 7 months
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