My name is Dese'Rae L. Stage. I'm a photographer, writer, and suicide awareness advocate.
In December 2005, I completed my Bachelor of Science in Psychology at East Tennessee State University, where I was an undergraduate research associate in Dr. Chris Dula's Applied Psychology Lab. I'm trained in various crisis intervention techniques. And the camera? Self-taught.
I was diagnosed with Bipolar II Disorder in 2004. I'm also a survivor of nine years of self-injury and a suicide attempt catalyzed by an emotionally and physically abusive relationship. It is these experiences, coupled with the loss of friends to suicide and a lack of resources for attempt survivors, that prompted me to start working on Live Through This.
In early 2013, I raised $23,000 for Live Through This via Kickstarter. Since then, I have provided commentary for BBC World Have Your Say and HuffPost Live. I have spoken about Live Through This at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Brooklyn College, and the University of Texas at Austin. Live Through This was an Associated Press Big Story and has been featured in Curve Magazine, among others.
I live in Brooklyn with my girlfriend (a fellow Miami native) and various furry creatures. You can see more of my work at deseraestage.com.
If you would like to book me to speak about Live Through This (expect a talk that will be personal; equal parts sad and funny; educational; and hopeful), email Monica Orta at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to contact me directly, you can do so by emailing me at email@example.com.