The noose that broke the donkey's back
Updated: Dec 12, 2021
Suicide. It's National Suicide Prevention week, but let's talk about the real problem here. Folks, (friends, families, and even sometimes professionals) don't tend to take depression and suicidal ideation seriously until it's too late. Often times it takes suicide attempts or death for an individual to gain the attention and "get the help" that they need. This is often too late for those that have completed suicide or have had ill effects from their attempt and have severe depression. Individuals have warning signs and even if they aren't crying out to the skies that they are suicidal or that they need help, it's often identifiable before it gets to the stage of them attempting or completing suicide. Listed below is a great graphic that talks about warning signs. One of the many problems that individuals with depression are faced with is that sometimes even when they reach out for help, they aren't receiving it. They may reach out in the early stages, they may reach out many times as it escalates and they are becoming overwhelmed and are no longer able to cope on their own. Individuals may feel like they are at the end of their rope and that their only option (or their best option) is suicide. Suicides are preventable and unfortunately, individuals are just not getting the help that they need. Friends and family watching out for warning signs and not being afraid to talk about the "hard stuff" can help reduce suicide risk as well as individuals getting treatment before a suicide attempt takes place. Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the US and the second leading cause of death in those aged 10 to 34. Suicide is highest in middle aged, white males. 1.4 million adults attempted suicide during 2019, of which most were aged 18-25. Men die by suicide about 3X as often as women and firearms are used in about 50% of suicide deaths. On average there are about 130 suicides per day.
Hotlines and Resources for Suicidal Ideation
Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255 or text HOME to 741741
Trevor Lifeline (LGBTQ+, ages 13-24): 1-866-488-7386
911 or Emergency Room
NIMH » Warning Signs of Suicide (nih.gov)