College Spring Breakdown! with Anja Burčak and Ryan Robertson – SPSM Chat April 18th, 2021

This week on SPSM Chat let’s talk about how college life can make someone think about suicide with host Rudy Caseres and panelists Ryan Robertson and Anja Burčak. What better way to spend your spring break?

Watch as we discuss such topics as:

What are some reasons college students may feel suicidal from time to time?

Is it “healthy” to think about suicide?

What are some accommodations that can be implemented by college staff/faculty that can help people experiencing mental health issues succeed?

Anja Burcak is a blogger with a passion for mental health advocacy. Her essays and articles have been featured on her personal mental health blog and sites such as The Mighty, BP Magazine, and Yahoo. She has created various types of content to educate the public about stigma and mental illness, including personal essays, vlogs, and social media content. Being diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder during college has given her insight into the struggles many college students battling mental health conditions face. She graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a BA in Biology and a BS in Psychology. Anja currently is involved in victim advocacy and suicide prevention research. She will begin a School Psychology graduate program this fall. Anja wishes to create more open, honest conversations about mental health, fighting stigma one conversation at a time.

Ryan A. Robertson, B.S., is a graduate student in Towson University’s Experimental Psychology Master’s program. He works in multiple labs at Towson to inform a bio-psycho-social approach to researching components related to non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI), such as attachment difficulties, memory deficits, trauma, and stigma. Through his research endeavors, he aims to ameliorate the stigma (i.e., discrimination) toward individuals who engage in NSSI or disclose suicidal thoughts.

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“Back On Our Bullshit” w/ Rudy Caseres, Marie Shanley, Joelle Marie, and Hudson Harris – SPSM Chat March 28th, 2021

This week on SPSM Chat Rudy Caseres returns and is bringing along some familiar faces. Join Rudy as well as this week’s panelists Joelle Marie, Marie Shanley AKA Mxiety, and Hudson Harris as they catch everyone up on what they’ve been up to and discuss how their views on suicide have evolved over the years. Each panelist will also get the opportunity to ask another panelist a question of their choosing. And, of course, we’ll be replying to comments/tweets from viewers across our various streaming platforms

Going forward, SPSM Chat will be back to our regular day and time of Sunday 6pm PT/9pm ET with host Rudy Caseres and will feature different panelists alongside him each week. We also just relaunched our Twitch channel which we’ll be simulcasting at in addition to our Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook pages. Make sure to follow us on Twitter for updates on future show topics and panel announcements and use #SPSM whenever tweeting about suicide to boost our presence!

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Epistemic Injustice in Suicidology w/ Jess Stohlmann-Rainey – SPSM Chat May 17th, 2020

This week on SPSM Chat co-hosts Rudy Caseres (@RudyCaseres), Carly Larson (@TheJuniorisHere) and Dr. Joel Schwartz (@JoelSchwartzPsyD), and Hudson Harris (@MentalStrategy) discuss the topic Epistemic Injustice in Suicidology with guest Jess Stohlmann-Rainey (@JessStohlmann).

Watch as we discuss such topics as:

What does suicidology claim to know and how did it come to know those things?

What are some potential conflicts of interest in suicide research?

What does socially just and equitable research look like?

Why is it important to diversity who is seen as a knower and produces knowledge?

Further Reading and Watching:

Jess Stohlmann-Rainey – Live Through This

Epistemic Injustice and Suicidality – Sam Lilly

Epistemic Injustice: Power and the Ethics of Knowing – Miranda Fricker

An Introduction to Epistemic Injustice – University of Birmingham

Credit: Dese’Rae L. Stage

Jess Stohlmann-Rainey (she/her) is a mad, queer, voice-hearer. She is an activist, community worker, researcher and writer whose work focuses on ethical and justice-based emotional support for people experiencing suffering, with special interests in liberating people who are victimized by forced treatment, self-harm, are impacted by suicide, and use drugs.

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Gender, Sexuality, and Identities That Empower w/ Mariangela Abeo – #SPSM Chat May 10th, 2020

This week on #SPSM Chat co-hosts Rudy Caseres (@RudyCaseres), Carly Larson (@TheJuniorisHere) and Dr. Joel Schwartz (@JoelSchwartzPsyD) discuss the topic “Gender, Sexuality, and Identities That Empower” with guest Mariangela Abeo (@MariangelaAbeo), creator of Faces of Fortitude.

Watch as we discuss issues such as:

What are some links between gender exploration and/or sexuality self-identity distress and suicidal intensity?

What has been your personal experience with gender and/or sexuality exploration if any?

Why are the binary concepts of gender and sexuality harmful to society as a whole?

How can we as a society better support people who may be exploring their gender or coming into what their sexuality is?

Further Reading and Watching:

Faces of Fortitude

Celebrate the Survivor: Creating a Safe Space around Suicide | Mariangela Abeo | TEDxYoungstown

Risk and Protective Factors for Suicide Among Adolescents: A Look at Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation

Gender identity conversion linked to psychological distress, suicide attempts

Suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in persons with gender dysphoria.

Teens who hide sexual orientation have higher suicide risk, study finds – NBC News

Teens who hide sexual orientation have higher suicide risk, study finds – NBC News

Mariangela Abeo (they/them) is a Mental Health Advocate, Speaker, Producer and Photographer + Creator of the Faces of Fortitude project; a movement in portraits that lays a foundation for healing for those affected by suicide by providing a safe, stigma-free space for mental health and suicide to be discussed. As a self trained photographer and producer, she currently presents Keynote and Signature Talks about a range of topics within the suicide and mental health arena, such as Safe Spaces for Celebrating Survivors, Words Policing around Trauma in Society, How Post Traumatic Growth Can Help You Find your Purpose, and The Power of Grass Roots Cross Narration, with accompanying pop-up image galleries. She has photographed over 160 Faces and counting, her images have been part of 3 art exhibits, and Faces of Fortitude has a rapidly growing social media fan base. A fine art book with poetry about depression and photographer’s notes is in the works and set to be published in late 2020.

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Introducing Our New Co-Hosts: Carly Larson and Dr. Joel Schwartz

SPSM Chat is proud to introduce to the world our new live show co-hosts Carly Larson and Dr. Joel Schwartz. Both Carly and Joel will join us this Sunday 6pm PDT when our guest will be Marianglelo Abeo, founder of Faces of Fortitude. You can learn more about Joel and Carly and their respective work experience from their bios listed below. We hope you’ll warmly embrace them as you have the rest of the SPSM Chat team. See you all Sunday!



Dr. Joel Schwartz is a licensed clinical psychologist with Total Spectrum Counseling in the South Bay of Los Angeles County. He specializes in therapy and testing for the misunderstood. As a therapist, he is warm, compassionate, and strongly humanistic, allowing for all the oddities and unexplored aspects of his clients to emerge and be validated. As a testing psychologist, Dr. Schwartz specializes in difficult and complex cases. Dr. Schwartz is currently building a consulting business specializing in educating about and working with neurodiversity across the world.

Dr. Schwartz grew up in Southern California. He developed an early interest in psychology, strangely enough, from a childhood filled with science fiction and horror stories. These stories often provided fascinating looks into human psychology and the human spirit. Dr. Schwartz attended UCLA as an undergrad where he conducted research in the field of neurolinguistics. From there, he attended Yeshiva University’s Ferkauf School of Clinical Psychology for his Master’s and Doctorate degree. He has worked in various settings including colleges, clinics, a federal prison, and residential treatment centers. Through his experience with a vast array of individuals he has stuck with one important lesson among many; as the psychoanalyst Harry Stack Sullivan said, “We are all more human than otherwise.”



Carly Larson (she/her/hers) is a non-abstinent person in recovery, certified peer support specialist, suicide attempt survivor, and drug decriminalization and legalization enthusiast who is currently involved in her state’s initiatives to rectify the challenges brought on by the poisoned drug supply and overdose crisis.

SPSM Chat is co-hosted by Rudy Caseres, Joelle Marie, Carly Larson, Dr. Joel Schwartz, and Hudson Harris. We stream live (as well as host a Twitter chat) every Sunday evening at 6pm PT/9pm ET. Each week we have a new expert guest to discuss the most important issues in the world of suicide prevention. All past episodes can be viewed on our YouTube channel and at We are also on FacebookTwitter/Periscope, and Mixer.

Content warning: SPSM Chat includes content about suicide and other experiences that may be traumatizing to you. You may experience strong or overwhelming emotions as a result. If you find yourself in distress or crisis, we encourage you to seek out support that works for you. Many people find it helpful to talk to a friend, family member, or someone else they trust.

If you would like formal crisis support, you can call National Suicide Prevention Lifelineat 800-273-8255, Trans Lifeline at 877-565-8860 (U.S.) or 877-330-6366 (Canada), or The Trevor Project at 866-488-7386. If you don’t like talking on the phone, you can text HOME to 741741 to get to Crisis Text Line, or you can try Lifeline Crisis Chat.

If you’d like to talk to a peer, contains links to warmlines in the United States. If you’re not in the U.S., you can go to for a connection to crisis centers around the world.

Many of these resources could utilize restrictive interventions, like active rescues (wellness or welfare checks) involving law enforcement or emergency services. A warmline is least likely to do this, but still might have these policies. You can ask if this is a possibility at any point in your conversation if this is a concern for you.

The following do not implement any restrictive interventions for people considering suicide:

Peerly Human online support groups:

Trans Lifeline: 877-565-8860 (U.S.) or 877-330-6366 (Canada)

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