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Suicide Prevention Week

Today marks the beginning of Suicide Prevention Week.  Although I haven’t been affected personally by suicide or attempted suicide, we all have or will know someone in our lives who has attempted or successfully committed suicide.

As I was researching some of the facts around suicide, I came across some that stood out to me:

  1. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the world.
  2. Nearly 1 million people die by suicide each year.
  3. A large portion of people who die by suicide, suffer from mental illness.
  4. A significant amount of people who die by suicide, do not contact health or      social services.

These facts and stats were astonishing to me.  Nearly 1 million people die by suicide each year?? That equals one person every 40 seconds.

In my personal opinion, I believe the main reasons these numbers are so high is because of stigma.  Many people hide their mental illness because they believe it is something to be ashamed of.  Society has many negative labels attached to mental illness, such as “crazy” and “psycho.”  You wouldn’t look down on someone with cancer, so why would you look down on someone with a mental illness?  Mental illness is a brain chemistry thing, not something that people choose.

Lack of resources has also been an issue, but I do believe that as we move forward more resources are becoming available. Below I have provided some resources in regards to suicide prevention.  Remember, you are not alone.

Kids Help Phone: http://kidshelpphone.ca 

It Gets Better: http://www.itgetsbetter.org

Suicide Prevention Resource Center: http://www.sprc.org/ 

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