As a teenager, I was vulnerable to the waves of hormonal changes most people face during adolescence. I felt helpless to the external events of my daily life. When things was good, I was glad to be alive. And when things were bad? I thought I’d never get through them. A heartbreak or a fight with a friend felt like the end of the world. A bad grade on a test, a disagreement with a teacher, or an argument with a parent felt like the worst thing that could happen to me. Thankfully, as I got older, my problems and my life expanded and the world got a lot more hopeful. With time comes insight – the more things we go through, the more resilient and courageous we become; life starts to get better.

However, those in the throes of depression think they’ll never get out of it. They erroneously believe life won’t get better. They get stuck in the devastation of the moment and can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. They’re swallowed in severe hopelessness and as a result, many choose to end their life.

Sadly, suicide is a reality for many Americans. Some do it to intentionally end their pain. Others do it as a cry for help. Suicide is a serious issue and a disturbingly prevalent one – but things don’t have to end this way.

This week’s top posts bring hope and help to those contemplating suicide, and address other issues that consume our thoughts and occupy our mind. Whether it’s suicidal thoughts, depression, PTSD, the inner critic or food, they’ll help you take control over the things that make you feel out of control in your own life.

Suicide Kills More Americans Than Car Crashes (Therapy Soup) – A new study reveals more Americans die from suicide than car accidents. This must-read post demonstrates the importance of taking all suicide threats seriously. To get more information about the study and where you can go to seek help, read this.

For depression and PTSD, a wag of the tail works (Depression On My Mind) – If you’re an animal lover who suffers from emotional issues, you probably can attest to the benefits of owning a pet. However, as this post reports a lack of sufficient evidence recently dissuaded the Veteran’s Administration from paying mental health service dog benefits for vets.

How To Lose Your Inner Critic (The Gentle Self) – One way you can make a difficult situation intolerable is by allowing your inner critic free range in your life. If you’re allowing it to rule the roost, check out this critical tip to silence that unforgiving voice.

Eat well, feel well: The interesting connection between mood and food! (Bipolar Trek) – Research shows you really are what you eat. This post teaches you how to be smart when it comes to using food to regulate your mood instead of letting your mood dictate what you eat (and overeat).

Mindfulness as Craving Control (360 of Mindful Living) – If you feel controlled by constant food cravings, this should help. Read it and learn ways to curb your cravings with a lesson in mindfulness.