The most painful feeling is believing the world is better off without you.
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“Suicide is a Leading Cause of Death in the United States” – NIH.GOV
In 2017 over 47,000 people died from suicide, imagine that 1 in 10 people in a city the size of Colorado Springs committed suicide each year. We are losing massive amounts of human potential each year due to people taking their own lives. We are seeing a very clear and dramatic escalation in the volume of suicides in our nation, a problem where we must change the trend.
WHAT THE DATA SAYS:
PROBLEMS LINKED TO THIS ISSUE:
Hate & Cruelty
WHAT WE CAN ACHIEVE:
- Reduced Loss of Life
- Build Stronger Communities & Relationships
- Create a Culture that Doesn’t Punish Failure
REMOVE THE TABOO OF GETTING HELP:
there is a stigma with the idea of suicidal thoughts, a belief that you are crazy or mentally ill, or that you will be locked up and your freedoms taken away if you express struggle, depression, or appear to not be in control of your life. We absolutely must help people understand that needing help doesn’t make you defective as a human being.
– Promote groups for Suicide Awareness & Help
– Encourage people to talk about it openly to pass on lessons learned to others experiencing extreme depression.
PROMOTE EMPATHY & HEALTHY COMMUNICATION:
We need to change the way we treat each other when we disagree or have friction socially. Reducing the volume of aggressive social interaction, personalization, and internalization, as well as online bullying and cruelty is key! We cannot pretend that what we say has no consequences or fallout especially when we are dehumanizing another living person.
– Moderate our social feeds against cyberbullying.
– Make a commitment to help those around you feel better after interactions with you!
– Promote, Reward, and Acknowledge Kindness at home, in schools, in the work place, and in the community!
TEACH HOW TO BUILD INTERNAL SELF VALUE:
Right now so much of our identity and self-value come from our education, job title, bank account, social media, politics, religion, or even football team. Many people don’t know how to create their own sense of self-value and build on it to help create greater resilience to difficult times and struggle in life.
– Provide Educational Materials teaching internal Self Value
– Recognize people for their contribution to their family, class, team, or other places.
– Thank those you interact with and Show Gratitude for sharing their Perspective, Experience, and Knowledge.
I have considered suicide in my teenage years, and nearly committed suicide once in my early 20’s and again in my early 30’s. I have battled depression from previous trauma, and feelings I once had that my social isolation was due to being inadequate both financially and overall failure as a human being.
I remember times alone in my empty one-bedroom apartment crying for hours at a time wishing or believing that I deserved to die for being worthless and not having any value to offer others.
In my early 30’s it was the feeling of failure once again due to medical and tax debt from health issues and struggling as a business owner through the great recession. It was the love for my wife and the fear of her coming home to the mess of a self-inflicted gunshot suicide that prevented me from going through with the attempt. I even tried to leave the relationship so I could commit suicide, and it was her refusal to give up on me and our relationship that saved my life, we married a week later.