Suicide Prevention Week Blog Hop!

If you followed my link from Snippet Sunday or Weekend Writing Warriors click here or scroll a little to find this week’s 8 sentences. If you can, please take the time to read this post first.

Welcome to my stop on the Suicide Prevention Blog Hop!

Thanks, Louisa, for organizing this hop, and thanks to all of you who are hopping around and helping raise awareness—because it doesn’t take much to make a difference.

First, the prizes—Louisa is generously offering a $50 Amazon Gift Card & that’s a lot of reading! Be sure and enter via Rafflecopter before hopping on. Over 30 authors are hosting their own giveaways, so make sure you hit all the stops.

One of my favorite charities is The Trevor Project—they’re always available for anyone in the US to call if they’re in crisis, or if they know someone who is and aren’t sure what to do. They also have an amazingly high rating on Charity Navigator which, as a habitual donor, is very important to me. I don’t have a lot of money to give and want to know it’s going where it’ll do the most good.

Their rating is also important because I’m giving away their swag—three “Talk to Me” kits, to be precise. I know, this isn’t your typical blog hop prize, but this isn’t your typical blog hop.

Talk To Me Kit 2013

The time got away from me, though, and I don’t have the kits on-hand yet. So, to be sure I can hand out at least one prize at the end of the hop I’m also giving away a $10 gift certificate to either Amazon, Dreamspinner, Amber Quill Press, or All Romance eBooks, winner’s choice! Because I want to get everyone who visits thinking about one thing:

You never really know who will need a little help to get through the day.

I learned that in 1998 and will never forget it.

Kiddo was 12 and we’d moved into our first apartment, just the two of us, a few months before. I didn’t have any illusions we were living the blue-sky life I’d hoped for her, but we were better off than the year before.

There I was, so proud of myself, thinking I’d figured out all on my own that I had a gay son and was just waiting for “the talk” so I could start being the cool mom—passing out condoms, marching in parades, and the whole shebang. Instead, I came home to a scary note from my gay daughter—that I didn’t quite believe at first but that changed both of our lives. I’ll spare you the gory details but for the next two weeks she was an inpatient in a psych facility and over the next year went in and out of two more. Luckily she didn’t suffer any permanent physical effects, but the few years that followed were a dark time for us. A dark time we navigated almost completely on our own.

In the weeks and months leading up to that day she hadn’t seemed to be in crisis—nothing happened to make me think I had anything to worry about.

That’s why this hop is so important:  any kid can get into trouble at any time.

Any person can get into trouble at any time. And when you’re feeling low it’s easy to believe nobody cares, even if you’re in a room full of people.

Thanks for visiting my stop on the hop—I won’t ask you to do anything special to enter my giveaway, but if you want extra entries you can tweet about the hop, share on FB or G+ or Tumblr—anything you’d like to do to help us get the word out that it’s National Suicide Prevention Week, and where to go for help.

Just to be clear–i’m giving away one $10 gift certificate and three Talk to Me kits from The Trevor Project (which will be sent as soon as i get them!).

The hop runs through September 14th, and the Grand Prize winner will be chosen on Sunday the 15th.

Click here to visit Louisa and the linky list of participants!

Click here to enter the Rafflecopter Grand Prize giveaway!

If you’d like to learn more, you can visit the National Suicide Prevention Week FB page, or The Trevor Project on Facebook or their web site.