A Voice at the Table Continues Wellness Workshops for Families Impacted by a Suicidal Crisis

Facilitators Tracey Medeiros & Annemarie Matulis

Pioneer Valley

Wellness Workshop Table

A Voice at the Table

7 month peer-to-peer workshops series for family and close friends emotionally impacted by the suicidal crisis of a loved one.

how do you bring yourself back from your own roller coaster of emotions to find at least some inner peace”

— Annemarie Matulis

SPRINGFIELD, MA, UNITED STATES, September 23, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ — “When your loved one has had a suicidal crisis and things have quieted down, how do you bring yourself back from your own roller coaster of emotions to find at least some inner peace?” That was one of the questions posed during a recent Saturday morning wellness workshop by facilitator Annemarie Matulis. A small group from the Pioneer Valley/Western Massachusetts area sat around the virtual Zoom table. The title of the exercise is “What? Me Color?” It’s about what do we each use to help calm ourselves down so we can better support our loved ones.

“It’s the Oxygen Mask Axiom,” added Matulis, “and it’s not easy.” Taking care of a loved one first in a suicidal crisis is instinctual for most of us. Impacted family and close friends lose sight of the “oxygen mask,” that they need to put that on themselves first. The family and close friends of suicide attempt survivors and other forms of suicidal crisis, struggle to find their way free from the anxiety and stress, darkness and anger, frustration, and a sense of helplessness to find their own way to the path of freedom from that fear. Welcome to the Impacted Family & Friends “Finding Inner Peace” workshops.

On Tuesday evening, September 28th, at 7:00 pm ET, Matulis, an impacted family member, and Tracey Medeiros, a suicide attempt survivor, http://www.traceymedeiros.net/ will engage others around the Zoom table to continue the interactive discussion and include topics like “Bear Hugs Kettle,” and “Frozen in Time.” In August, A Voice at the Table http://www.avoiceatthetable.org/index.html delivered two informational livestreams to introduce the families and health-care providers in Chicopee, Springfield and Holyoke and other Pioneer Valley communities in Hampden, Franklin, and Hampshire counties about the content of this peer-to-peer, innovative, wellness workshop series in addition to the who, what, how and why the workshops. Moving forward, two of these wellness workshops will be presented each month through March 2022. The October workshops will be on the 16th at 10:00 am, and the 26th, at 7:00 pm. The Impacted Family & Friends programs have been in place in Massachusetts since 2014 and are now available in several other states.

WHO: Family & close friends emotionally impacted by any form of a loved one’s suicidal crisis

WHAT: Virtual & interactive wellness workshop – Finding Inner Peace

WHEN: Tuesday, September 28th, 7:00 pm ET

WHERE: Zoom. Link to register: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/87059758812?pwd=citFRm4vekh5aDg0Wkc4WnpjRkxkZz09

Questions: director@avoiceatthetable.org

Is This the Night: Finding Inner Peace is a roundtable workshop format that will gently guide participants through what some might call a spiritual and emotional inventory that will offer suggestions on how to better recognize our own behaviors and attitudes and make minor or, in some cases, major changes. This is nothing new. It’s just another way to experience that turnaround to step away from fear and find inner peace and emotional balance.

The exercises outlined in these workshops may not be “the” answer to the quality-of-life wellness challenge for this huge population, but they offer a starting point to begin to tear down the walls fear has built and develop new soul-care skills that can bring some inner peace within while walking through a difficult emotional challenge. It is important to always keep in mind that the Finding Inner Peace Workshops are not counseling or therapy. It is a peer-to-peer format that is described in the original grant funding as “new and innovative.” It is also important to maintain a comfortable and casual atmosphere throughout the series. There will be moments when the sharing exchange may be serious or sad. There will be just as many times where laughter will rule.

These wellness workshops will be held twice a month from September through December and will resume from January to March. This project is funded by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health.

For the Media: Responsible reporting on suicide, including stories of hope and resilience, can
prevent more suicides. Please visit the Suicide Reporting Recommendations for more
information. For additional information, please visit SuicideReportingToolkit.com.

The mission of the Pioneer Valley Coalition for Suicide Prevention is to create an inclusive collaboration of public and private agencies, community members and people with lived experiences working together to promote healthy communities by supporting strength-based practices that reduce the risk of suicide. Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pvcsp/

About A Voice at the Table: A Voice at the Table was founded in 2014 as a companion to the documentary, A Voice at the Table, a call to action to bring the lived experience voices of suicide attempt survivors to all tables within suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. As a grassroots movement, it has since expanded and become the national “home base” forum for the family & friends emotionally impacted & traumatized by the suicidal experiences of loved ones. A movement: a group of people working together to advance their shared ideas. A forum: a place, meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular concern can be exchanged, in this case, nationally and internationally. http://www.avoiceatthetable.org/index.html

For more information about this 7-month series: director@avoiceatthetable.org

Annemarie Matulis
A Voice at the Table
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