- Over 800,000 people die by suicide every year. World Health Organization (WHO)
- Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the US for all ages. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- Males complete suicide 4x’s more than females. Male deaths represent 79% of all US suicides. (CDC)
- Females attempt suicide 3x’s as often as males. (CDC)
- Men use more lethal means to complete their suicide than women.
With statistics like these, you would think you would be hearing more from friends, family, and loved ones about their stressors, challenges, feelings of powerlessness, and need for support. Heck, with statistics like these, you would think that even you would have more of a desire to be free from the emotional and mental trappings that can crush you like a Sumo wrestler. However, we live in a society that applauses independence. Stand on your own two feet. Don’t burden other people with your problems. Man up. Suck it up…
So we do. We suck it up, suck it in, and let it fill our bodies like a slow releasing poison.
It’s amazing how the mind works when we are left alone with our worries, doubts, and problems. Those problems start speaking to us. It’s like they are in a contractual agreement with suicide to meet a daily quota. They work diligently and consistently, until their goal is reached. The things they tell us about ourselves overwhelm us, embarrass us, and shame us. So we hold them as secrets. These are just a fraction of the secrets that speak to us privately and, in some cases, keep suicide thriving:
- You are alone
- You have no purpose
- Your pain will never end
- You are a burden to others
- You can’t do anything right
- You will never be able to get through this
Let’s look at a few steps to take when breaking the cycle of secrets that keep suicide thriving.
1. Understand that you are NEVER ALONE. Be open to reaching out to friends, family, or even new people who want to help. For example, you can always reach out to your doctors, a mental health professional, or one of these resources:
National Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-8255
Georgia Crisis Line 1-800-715-4225
http://www.supportgroups.com – If you are not quit ready to call anyone but want to be heard. This is an open forum so please practice internet safety when posting comments or new posts
2. Take the S.L.O.W (Stop to Look for Other Ways) route when negative feelings arise. Allow yourself a moment to distract yourself with activities that could improve your mood and give you the time needed to contact someone who could support your healing. Sometimes acting hastily can lead to making irreversible decisions.
How can you stop to look for other ways to process your feelings? Well you can start by trying to
Have a safety plan in place and available, if needed. Here’s a great example of how to create a safety plan HERE
www.happify.com – evidenced based solutions for mental and emotional wellbeing. Also comes in an app for your phone.
www.calm.com – wonderful breathing and relaxation activities. Comes in an app for your phone too!
Journal your thoughts. For every negative idea journaled write three things that are positive. Sometimes it’s hard to see the positive in your life. It’s also hard to see air molecules but that doesn’t mean it’s not right in front of our face.
3. Know that you are in this world because your talents, skills, and gifts are needed. You ARE valuable. Our different skills, talents, and gifts fit together like puzzle pieces. If you aren’t sure what your purpose is, give yourself permission to find out.
4. Remember nothing lasts forever. It changes and rotates. Some feelings have lasted longer than others. Sometimes it’s been so long that it feels like it will never go away. However, it can and it will IF you allow yourself to keep moving forward. Seek support. You really don’t have to do it alone.
For more resources on a wider range of mental and emotional health information and support, please see our resources page HERE