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April 2017 Edition
TSPN Newsletters Switch to E-Format

Effective as of this month, TSPN's three monthly and bimonthly newsletters will be consolidated into a single electronic newsletter, scheduled for publication on the first of each month.

The change in format is intended to reduce TSPN paper and printing costs, as well as labor involved with research, design, and production. The move is also in keeping with the emerging trend of web-based newsletters within the non-profit sector.

Future editions of the electronic TSPN Call to Action will include information on upcoming TSPN events, recaps of recent Network conferences and projects, details of relevant state and federal legislative actions, and poetry/prose submissions from survivors of suicide and the lived experience community.

Previous editions of the TSPN Call to Action, Out of the Shadows, and can you hear me? will be archived on the TSPN website for the benefit of our readers. The TSPN Call to Action page will be updated with links to past e-newsletters.

All recommended articles, news leads, and reader submissions may be sent to the TSPN central office at The Network thanks you for your continued readership of the newsletter and your support of TSPN.
Sue Klebold
"Steps Toward A Safer Tennessee"

Registration is still available for "Steps Toward A Safer Tennessee", scheduled for April 19 at Trevecca Community Church, located at 335 Murfreesboro Pike in Nashville, ZIP 37210.

Our keynote speaker will be Sue Klebold, mother of one of the students involved in the Columbine High School incident. Since then, Mrs. Klebold has become a mental health and violence prevention advocate, and is the author of A Mother's Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy. (The date of the symposium is one day before the 18th anniversary of the Columbine shooting.)

About 300 seats are currently reserved or registered. Make sure to reserve your seat at now--registration will be cut off at 400.

TSPN would like to thank its many sponsors and supporters are helping to make this event possible (see registration portal for complete listing).
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Facebook Introduces New Suicide Prevention Tools

Over the past month, Facebook has innovated two new options for connecting people struggling with suicidal thoughts to receive help in real time--a partnership with the Crisis Text Line and a new reporting function within its Facebook Live feature.

Facebook has joined forces with the Crisis Text Line to allow users to connect to counselors via Facebook Messenger, expanding the capabilities of both entities to respond to people in crisis. Users can pull up the Crisis Text Line's Facebook page ( ) and click the "Send Message" button for connection to a live crisis counselor available to help users with issues such as bullying, suicidal thoughts, mental illness, LGBTQ concerns, human trafficking, and more.

Additionally, Facebook Live now allows users concerned about a friend to report videos to Facebook so they can receive real-time help and resources.

TSPN has a working partnership with Crisis Text Line through which the Crisis Text Line will track and report on trends in texts sent from within Tennessee. This information will help guide TSPN in building and enhancing targeted suicide prevention strategies. TSPN Executive Director Scott Ridgway provided information and perspective on these developments in an interview with the Knoxville News Sentinel, and other media outlets throughout the state have carried information about the service.
Lived Experience Moment

Writer, poet, and essayst Patrick J. Derilus contributed this meditation to, a blog maintained by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) for teens and young adults struggling with mental health issues. Read more of Patrick's work on his blog "Subtlties", available at


If we are depressed, does that make us less human?
Our faces change with disgust toward ourselves
when our negativity is in the air,
when our crippling negativity cannot be harnessed,
we vilify and shame the human who lives in despair.
we act toward ourselves as if our faces are disfigured,
disfigured with too many excuses and far-ended complaints.
we act as if we need to change to be approachable
to feign our negative feelings with positive ones.
but if faking it until we make it is true,
how come many of us do not make it?
why should we compromise our pain
for a falsehood of optimism, with a self-imposing will to fake it?
if we do not fake it, we look at ourselves with disdain.
we are looked down upon with a shame,
that makes us feel worse, increases our pains.
why should we feel bad
for fighting what corrodes our beautiful minds?
why do we shame ourselves
for being so-called "negative",
stigmatizing our intrinsic greatness,
we leave ourselves confined
why do we dismiss one another,
acting as if our mental illnesses are
inherent malformations of our design?
why, when it is in our human nature to
lament, wane, and repine?