Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.
Talking about suicide emotionally drains me. As someone who advocates for mental health so much this makes me feel really ashamed of myself.
Suicide is included in that spectrum. It has to be spoken about, no matter the emotions it brings up.
Lately I’ve felt really heartbroken over this topic. This month is all about raising awareness for suicide prevention and talking about it is exactly what we need to do, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t emotionally draining.
I’ve kind of been in a weird headspace this week. I used to push the grief of losing someone to suicide deep down inside of me so that I didn’t have to feel that pain, and that’s one of the worst decisions I’ve ever made.
While writing about grief does help to an extent, and it has definitely helped me with coping, allowing yourself to feel that pain is crucial for recovery.
The aftermath of losing a loved one to suicide leaves you with the most gut-wrenching feeling of devastation. This is why we need to talk about prevention methods.
Before any talks of prevention, I want to bring up something that I’ve been guilty of in the past and something that I want to challenge everyone to think about. That is talking too lightly about suicide.
We say “I’m going to kill myself” in a joking manor way too easily. It shouldn’t be used in a funny sense, because it isn’t funny at all.
I used to be guilty of this and I genuinely wish to never hear these words out of someone’s mouth again.
The warning signs of someone who is suicidal can be hard to miss, which is why we have to be so proactive about checking in on our loved ones.
The harsh reality is that you can appear completely happy and suffer from depression. You can go out and have a good time with friends, but the second you get home you’re drained from putting on a front all day.
There are so many ways to hide mental illness and put on a façade for how we’re really feeling.
I say it again and again, but this is why we have to have conversations about mental health. This is why it’s so important to end that stigma and break down societal boundaries to talk about these things.
Now more so than ever, people are suffering from suicidal thoughts and mental health problems. Our world is feeling alone, and that’s the worst headspace to be in.
We have to support our friends and family when they come forward for help. We have to be that safe space for them, because it can be really scary to ask for help.
Help your loved ones find meaning. Help them understand how loved and valued they are.
We can’t just keep calling it a tragedy after it happens. The work starts now, and we all can help spread kindness and work to make our loved ones feel genuinely loved.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
National Alliance on Mental Illness: 1-800-950-6264