An international epidemic, suicide has touched the lives of nearly half of all Americans, yet is rarely talked about openly. In this timely and important book, Susan Blauner breaks the silence to offer guidance and hope for those contemplating ending their lives -- and for their loved ones.
A survivor of multiple suicide attempts, Blauner eloquently describes the feelings and fantasies surrounding suicide. In a direct, nonjudgmental, and loving voice, she offers affirmations and suggestions for those experiencing life-ending thoughts, and for their friends and family. Here is an essential resource destined to be the classic guide on the subject.
Susan Rose Blauner, MSW, LCSW, is a writer, motivational speaker, artist, singer, and educator who changes the way people think about suicidal thoughts, suicidal behavior and mental disease. She is the 2002 recipient of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s Survivor of the Year Award for Distinguished Creativity in Suicide Prevention and transformed eighteen years of suicidal ideation, three suicide gestures, multiple psychiatric hospitalizations and decades of therapy into the life-saving resource, How I Stayed Alive When My Brain Was Trying to Kill Me: One Person’s Guide to Suicide Prevention. Susan presents motivational keynotes and seminars throughout the United States designed to destigmatize mental illness; enlighten practitioners, educators, first responders and military personnel; and empower individuals and families affected by mental illness and suicide. She has appeared on Good Morning America, American Family, and in the documentary A Secret Best Not Kept. Following a 2008 breast cancer diagnosis, two surgeries, chemotherapy and radiation, Susan went on to earn a master’s degree in social work from Simmons College in 2015, at the age of 50. She now lives in New England with her dog, Fiona, and continues to find ways to enhance her enjoyment of life. For more information, visit www.susanblauner.com.
— Iris Bolton, founder of the National Resource Center for Suicide Prevention and Aftercare
“Each word written with thoughtful intent; each story told with the deepest of honesty and humility, and in doing so Blauner puts forward a life-saving book.”
— Daniel J. Reidenberg, PsyD, Executive Director, Suicide Awareness Voices of Education (www.save.org)
“With neither hollow platitudes nor medical doublespeak… Blauner provides an extremely valuable and much-needed tool for both suicidal thinkers and their loved ones.”
— Publishers Weekly
“A beacon of hope for the suicidal thinker as well as family members and friends. Susan Rose Blauner’s writing shinese with honesty and hope, compassion and courage. I am convinced that if my sister had read this book, our family history would have been changed.”
— Anne D. LeClaire, author of Entering Normal
“In her heartfelt and important book, Blauner … offers guidance and hope for those contemplating ending their lives.”
— Library Journal (starred review)
“Like a Fodor’s Guide that gets you from the depths of the hell of depression to the paradise of balanced life.”
— Reese Butler, Program Manager, National Hopeline Network
“How I Stayed Alive is vulnerable and resilient, deeply personal and profoundly practical. In its revised edition, this book will continue to be an important resource for those suffering from suicidal ideation and mental illness, and to provide insight and hope for their loved ones.”
— Patrick J. Kennedy, former U.S. Representative and founder of The Kennedy Forum