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Meg Hutchinson is well known as a Massachusetts-based folk singer and songwriter who has struggled with mental illness. Nine years ago, she suffered what can only be called a frightening break with reality. Her younger sister, Tessa, checked Meg into a hospital, where she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder.
It was a turning point in Hutchinson's journey of understanding, and accepting, her struggle with the illness, which is featured in the new documentary "Pack Up Your Sorrows: A Story of Illness, Hope & Transformation."
Meg Hutchinson, singer-songwriter.
- "People with bipolar disorder experience unusually intense emotional states that occur in distinct periods called "mood episodes." Each mood episode represents a drastic change from a person's usual mood and behavior."
National Institute Of Mental Health: Suicide Prevention
If you are thinking about harming yourself, or know someone who is, tell someone who can help immediately.
- Call your doctor.
- Call 911 or go to a hospital emergency room to get immediate help or ask a friend or family member to help you do these things.
- Call the toll-free, 24-hour National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889) to talk to a trained counselor.
- Make sure you or the suicidal person is not left alone.
- "Kevin Briggs, a friendly, sandy-haired motorcycle patrolman ... told me that he starts talking to a potential jumper by asking, 'How are you feeling today?' Then, 'What’s your plan for tomorrow?' If the person doesn’t have a plan, Briggs says, 'Well, let’s make one. If it doesn’t work out, you can always come back here later.'"
This segment aired on June 18, 2015.