Like Minded People

animal-twins-two-similar-lookalikes-205It has been a wonderful day.  Some might think I’m a little crazy to say that when I spent a good part of it talking about suicide prevention but what I liked about my day was I spent it talking to people who are like minded.

We have not all had the same sorts of life experience.  In fact the opposite is true.  The nine of in that classroom today come from very different backgrounds.  We have very different educational backgrounds and life experience but, if I dare say, we all share a deep caring for people who, like us, have experienced struggles with mental health issues.  We all understand trauma and emotional pain and want to support other people with the same sorts of issues.

Often our hearts are much larger than our strength so always we have to be catching ourselves so we don’t overextend our emotional responses and end up back in our own mental health holes.  It is not an easy lesson.  In fact teaching people they have to develop and maintain strong and healthy boundaries is one of the hardest lessons for mental health peer supporters.

After the third day with them I went to spend dinner with a friend who also understands the mental health issues and has a huge heart.  He and I have been taking a course together in spiritual direction, so we also had that to talk about and discovered we had very similar experience in our spiritual walk.

What a blessing it is to spend time with, and have deep discussion with people who think and feel their way through life the same way I do.  Sort of makes we want to be cloistered with them forever but then what good we be to the rest of the world.  It is good we come together sometimes though to be recharged and dip our cups into each others wells of strength so we go back into the world refreshed and recharged to do the work we do.


About Peggy Guiler

You just never know what show up on my blog. As the name implies it is about the stuff of life just like Spilt Milk. Everyday events spark thought and contemplation. Special events in the community, the country or the world may strike a cord and get me talking. Sometimes it's about people in my life or circumstances, sometimes about my garden, sometimes about a book or a political issue. Always it's about something I am passionate about. In my business, River of Hope Enterprises (, I work as an "Certified Coach" (International Coach Federation), a trainer, consultant and speaker. and as a spiritual director. I also drive a school bus to keep the wolf from the door while I build my business. I love the kids on the bus (most of the time). My family is grown and I have three grandkids who thrill my heart but I don't get to see any of them very often. Circumstances of life have made "family" difficult. My son died by suicide at age 16 in 2000 and the strain on our family relationships since has been huge. Mental health is a field where I worked for almost 22 years and where I still do some consulting and training. That combined with my own battle with depression and my son's death weave together to form some of my greatest soap box items: suicide intervention, suicide bereavement and peer support in mental health are right on the top of my list. Social justice is an underlying passion. Keeping the wolf from the door as a single parent was full-time work and my career path as a journalists was augmented with cleaning contracts, cooking, retail clerk, and bartending. I have known hard work and am grateful for the experience and perspective it has given me. A firmly grounded faith and a passion for learning has now taken me toward a new field as a Spiritual Director and I am soon adding to that a license to marry people. As I move toward retirement I am very aware that I have to keep working so I chose to do things which will meet my modest financial needs and also my love of supporting people in their life journey. Woven into all of this is my love of writing. Trained as a Journalist, and having worked in the field as a freelance news writer for many years, I have a great love for writing. This blog is a new beginning for me. As I hone my skills and begin to form a daily discipline of writing I hope it will lead to more writing in the future.
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