Mental Health Resources

Although The Existence Game is a fictitious story, nearly all of the problems Alex encounters are based on real-life situations.

I am no expert on mental health issues, but I feel a connection with those who have shared similar struggles to the difficulties Alex has experienced and I’d like to offer some contact information and further reading on mental health issues.

Two of the most important things for an abused person – sometimes referred to as a “survivor” – to understand are that the abuse was not his or her fault, and that survivors are not alone. At times it can feel like one exists in a vacuum, but there are others out there with similar stories. Each survivor is both on their own journey, and on a path that has been walked by millions. Survivors exist all around us; we encounter them nearly every day. Each step taken toward health is a step taken with courage and determination. I wish everyone who is on this journey the strength to move forward and the understanding that it is possible to enjoy life on one’s own terms.

With warm regards,
Judy Adams


Assistance websites have sprung up all over the Internet. Many have been put together by survivors, and of these, some offer legitimate and extremely helpful information. Some appear to have been set up by people who wish to be helpful, but who are still steeped in unresolved problems. Please keep this in mind if you are perusing the Internet. There are also organizations put together by professionals, and, as with the ones put together by survivors, some are legitimate and extremely helpful, and others are out to sell you something you don’t need, so, again, be aware as you peruse the Internet.

Regarding the websites listed below, You must use your best judgment.


Help in the U.S.

SUICIDE HOTLINES:



National Suicide Hotlines, USA

Toll free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, free and confidential
1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433)
Deaf Hotline 1-800-799-4TTY (1-800-799-4889)

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

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Toll free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, free and confidential
"Are you in crisis?" Please call 1-800-273-TALK
You can call for yourself or for someone you care about. Your call will be routed to the crisis center nearest to you. This network has more than 140 crisis centers nationwide.

Teen Suicide and Youth Suicide Help

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This website has a great deal of information on suicide prevention for young people. You can access the home page at http://www.suicide.org/

Confidential on-line support forum is exclusively for people who have lost loved ones to suicide.
This is NOT a suicide prevention forum or a forum for individuals who have attempted suicide.
http://www.suicide.org/suicide-survivors-forum.html

ADULT SURVIVOR WEBSITES:



Survivors of Incest

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This website explains the format of Survivors meetings and offers information on locating a Survivors meeting near you.

Surviving Incest

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A survivor-written and maintained website with a great deal of interesting information.

Adult Survivors of Child Abuse (ASCA)

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Adult Survivors of Child Abuse is an international self-help support group program designed specifically for adult survivors of neglect, physical, sexual, and/or emotional abuse. The ASCA program offers community-based self-help support groups, provider-based self-help support groups, web-based self-help support groups, and Survivor to Thriver workbooks. The program was designed to support and assist survivors of child abuse, irrespective of their financial situation, in moving on with their lives.

MISCELLANEOUS MENTAL HEALTH INFORMATION:



NAMI National Alliance on Mental Illness

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The PsyCom.Net Book Service Presents Books on Borderline Personality Disorder

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FINDING A THERAPIST:



Psychology Today Therapist Locator

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– with short biographies and links to therapists websites

Finding a Therapist for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

Several links are available to locate a specialist in PTSD in your area.
http://ptsd.about.com/od/ptsdbasics/tp/txproviders.htm


Help in the U.K.

For information, support and advice outside the National Health Service

1. MIND (Mental health charity, providing information and advice in respect of mental health. Has local groups.)
15-19 Broadway, Stratford, London. E15 4BQ
Tel: 020 8519 2122
Email: contact@mind.org.uk
Website: www.mind.org.uk

2. SANE (Mental health charity, offering information and support in respect of mental health via helpline.) Saneline (helpline open 6pm-11pm every day)
Tel. 08457678000
Website: www.sane.org.uk

3. Samaritans. (Confidential helpline for people in distress.)
Samaritans helpline (open 24 hours a day, every day)
Tel: 08457 90 90 90
Website: www.samaritans.org

4. Depression Alliance (advice and information about depression.)
Tel: 0845 123 2320
Website: www.depressionalliance.org

If looking for a qualified therapist outside the NHS, lists are provided by:

1. British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP)
Tel: 0161 797 4484
Website: www.babcp.com

2. British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
Tel: 01455 883 300
Website: www.bacp.co.uk


Help in Australia

AUSTRALIAN PSYCHOLOGICAL SOCIETY (includes links for suicide help, depression hotline, finding assistance in rural areas, etc.)
Website: www.psychology.org.au/community/links/mental_health

AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF HEALTH AND WELFARE
Website: mhsa.aihw.gov.au/home


Interesting information links

I was only able to do a small amount of research on Munchausen by Proxy, but basically created the character, Jacqueline Moser (Alex’s mother) with components of MbP and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. If you are interested in further reading about Munchausen’s by Proxy, this was the website I found most interesting:

www.munchausen.com

One of the most interesting resources I’ve found (and I located information about Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, and Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy, among other things) is from the National Institutes of Health, at this web address:

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth


Books

PSYCHOLOGY:

Stephanie Donaldson-Pressman and Robert M. Pressman
The Narcissistic Family, Diagnosis and Treatment

Judith Lewis Herman
Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence, From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror

M. Scott Peck, MD
People of the Lie; The Hope For Healing Human Evil
The Road Less Traveled

John Bradshaw
Bradshaw on the Family

Patricia Evans
The Verbally Abusive Relationship

Stuart T. Hauser, Joseph P. Allen, and Eve Golden
Out of the Woods: Tales of Resilient Teens

PHILOSOPHY:

Barry Stevens
Don’t Push The River, It Flows By Itself

Machaelle Small Wright
Behaving As If The God In All Life Mattered

P.D. Ouspensky
The Fourth Way

Joseph Chilton Pearce
The Crack in the Cosmic Egg: New Constructs of Mind and Reality

Mitsugi Saotome
Aikido and the Harmony of Nature

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Little Prince

Charles Eisenstein
The Ascent of Humanity

Desmond Tutu
No Future Without Forgiveness

Paul Reps & Nyogen Senzaki Compilation:
Zen Flesh, Zen Bones

Crockett Johnson
Harold and the Purple Crayon

Carlos Castaneda
The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge

Susan Griffen
Pornography and Silence

Mark Twain
The War Prayer

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
Welcome to the Monkey House

A.S. Neill
Summerhill: A Radical Approach to Child Rearing

Viktor E. Frankl
Man’s Search for Meaning

Kahlil Gibran
Mirrors Of The Soul

Kahlil Gibran
The Prophet