Angela's Story

Angela will always remember the day she hit bottom…an afternoon when everything seemed so hopeless and painful that she decided to take her own life. Her baby daughter was three months old and suffering a bout of colic. Unpaid bills were stacked on the kitchen table. She was grieving over the death of a beloved aunt, the woman who was her anchor. The sadness and disappointment were simply more than she could bear.

As a young Hispanic woman, Angela came from a culture in which she was not encouraged to share her feelings or reach out to others for help. But fortunately she called a friend, and the friend knew to call the Austin Travis County Integral Care’s 24/7 Crisis Hotline, 472-HELP.

Within the hour the two young women were on their way to Integral Care's Psychiatric Emergency Services Clinic. Angela, who had been treated in the past for severe depression, was sent to Seton Shoal Creek through a program funded in cooperation with the Travis County Healthcare District. Five days later she was stabilized on medication and able to return home. Recognizing that she has an ongoing illness that requires treatment, Angela began taking the steps necessary to maintain recovery.

For her, this meant continuing her medication, keeping regular appointments with her Integral Care caseworker, and attending a support group that allowed her to work through the abuse she suffered as a child and explore her options in a safe environment.

Today Angela is a completely different person than the frightened young woman who was in crisis three years ago. Her brown eyes sparkle as she talks about the commercial art classes she has taken at Austin Community College and how she enjoys volunteering at her child’s preschool.

Her journey is not always smooth nor has it been easy, but she is living each day as it comes and has a support system in place for when situations starts to unravel. “Even a generation ago there wasn’t much in place for someone like me,” Angela says. “I feel especially blessed to have found Integral Care. Without the help and support, I doubt if I would be alive today,”