Tonight's special guest is Michael Skinner, a returning NAASCA family member from New Hampshire. Michael is a nationally known award-winning advocate survivor addressing the issues of trauma, abuse and mental health concerns through public speaking and his music. Tonight, among other topics, we'll discuss his perspective on suicide, which were expressed in a recent "Live Through This" written interview. "Live Through This" is a collection of portraits and stories of suicide attempt survivors, as told by those survivors. "Suicide has been around me all my life," says Michael. His mother attempted suicide he explains, "but there was no talking about it. It was just .. something was awry." He goes on, "I've lost two brothers to suicide, okay? And two friends." He points out, "I'm the oldest of five siblings. Every one of us has had [issues], and it's got nothing to do with being mentally ill. It's got to do with the trauma and the abuse that we experienced as kids, because it was pretty horrific. It broke you spiritually. My parents were evil and dark in what they did, 'cause they wanted to crush your spirits." Michael is an oft sought after speaker on the sexual exploitation and trafficking of children and adults and he has appeared as a guest on many TV, radio and Internet shows. His non-profit "The Surviving Spirit" offers Hope, Healing and Help for those impacted by trauma, abuse and mental health challenges through the creative arts, advocacy, education, a monthly newsletter and web site.
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