Speaking of Suicide is a series of frank, thought provoking and tough conversations about men and mental health.
~ This content contains frank and open discussions regarding the subject of suicide, which may be a trigger for some audiences. Please be mindful of this before listening. ~
Made in support of and in collaboration with the Highland based charity Mikeysline, as well as hearing from people who have either suffered from mental health problems themselves or have lost someone to suicide, Shona Macpherson from Mikeysline provides insight and ideas for how to recognise if you’re vulnerable and what to do if you’re struggling.
Speaking of Suicide is an Adventurous Audio production made thanks to the support of D&D Paving Ltd.
The music throughout the series is ‘Nana’ by Tom Ireland
PODCAST SCHEDULE AND TOPICS
In this episode Pennie talks to Ron Williamson, founder of Mikeysline. Ron talks about his shock when his nephew, Michael, took his own life and the conversations he found himself having with Michael’s friends at the funeral, a number of whom had also contemplated suicide. Ron then set up Mikeysline with the view that men in the Highlands needed an alternative, somewhere they could talk to like minded people and, most importantly, somewhere they’d be able to safely talk through messages and texts, rather than face to face or over the phone.
In this hugely courageous and touching conversation Mark talks to Pennie about how childhood trauma has left him battling with anxiety long into adulthood. He shares how it got so bad that he contemplated suicide and took himself off to Glasgow with the intention of taking his life. Since then Mark has worked hard to turn around his life, he’s found daily cold water swimming in the Cairngorms as a way of dealing with life’s stresses but he also devotes a great amount of his time to helping youngsters who are struggling.
Simon Greaves is a Mountain Guide in the Cairngorms but for many years he worked as a manager in education. Ironically, although his role as a senior manager involved supporting stressed and exhausted staff who were struggling with mental health, he found it incredibly difficult to speak up about his own mental health problems. For 2 years he contemplated ending his life before everything came to a crisis point but, thankfully, instead of turning to suicide he turned to a very receptive and good GP. It was a moment that turned Simon’s life around.
PATRICK AND WENDY MULLERY
In this heartbreaking and breath takingly honest episode Patrick and Wendy talk about losing their son, James, to suicide. They talk about the moment when Patrick found James and the devastating consequences of his death for the whole family, including his partner and their 3 young children. Since losing their son, Patrick and Wendy have found solace in offering support to other people bereaved through suicide or struggling with their mental health through the James Support GroupAs Patrick tells Pennie “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem for the person who takes their own life, it’s a permanent problem for everyone who’s left behind”.
One of the world’s strongest men, Luke Stoltman, pays as much time working on his mental fitness as he does on his physical strength. Losing his mum to cancer taught him all about the importance of talking and sharing, opening up about your feelings and emotions. He now gets up at sunrise every day and swims in the sea to help him keep mentally healthy, he also dedicates a lot of his time to helping others stay mentally fit and well. Luke’s a Highland giant with extraordinary warmth and compassion who’s not afraid to admit that when he first when to see a therapist he was terrified. An utterly engaging and inspirational man.
In this episode of Speaking of Suicide, sponsored by Williamson Foodservice, Pennie talks to her good friend Joe. They’ve been friends for a number of years and have shared a lot of laughs and conversations, but it wasn’t until recently that Joe admitted he’d contemplated suicide. In this compelling and hugely thought-provoking conversation Joe talks openly and honestly about the events leading up to his thinking that suicide was his only way out. It’s a story of the pressures that come from being in business for yourself, the stress of feeling you need to support the family and live up to your own expectations of what you should achieve in life. Joe thought he wouldn’t qualify for the podcast because he never attempted to take his own life, on the contrary we think that makes his story all the more important because he can share how he managed to turn back from years of stress and pressure and depression to build the life he has now – a life where he’s happy and fulfilled and knows that suicide would never have been the best option. This is breathtakingly honest and a riveting listen for anyone who ever struggles with the day to day pressures of life.
It’s less than a year since Annette’s partner, Bob, completed suicide. Even though its still so recent and raw Annette felt really strongly that she wanted to talk about the events leading up to Bob’s death and just what the experience and aftermath of suicide feels like when you’re the one left behind.Even though Bob had a long history of mental health challenges and was seeking support and help, Annette never believed he’d take his life. In this deeply moving, utterly honest and open account of what happened, Annette talks to Pennie about the harsh reality of life after losing a loved one to suicide.
If you need someone to talk to, you can text Mikeysline on 07786 20 77 55