The Modern-Day Tragedy of Suicide
By brandon •
For a long time in the United States, discussing suicide was not commonplace or encouraged. In fact, it was often believed that conversations about suicide might even drive someone to attempt it rather than prevent it. However, time has proven this idea to be a myth.
According to the Mayo Clinic, talking about suicide has been proven to increase the likelihood that someone would seek help. Asking someone who is struggling emotionally if they need some help or someone to talk to could very well be the first step in their recovery. While suicide can be unpredictable, it can also be preventable by being proactive.
It is important to know the warning signs in order to help someone who might be struggling with suicide ideation. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has provided the following warning signs to help us recognize someone who might be considering self-harm:
- Excessive feelings of sadness
- Extended strong bouts of anger
- Reclusive behavior
- Extreme worry and fear
- Inability to understand or relate to others
- Unable to handle stress related to daily problem solving
- Changes sleeping habits and eating habits
- Delusions/hallucinations involving themselves absent from reality
- Sudden, uncontrollable mood swings
- Unable to perceive changes in one’s own behavior
- Withdrawing from family and friends
- Substance abuse
- Inability to concentrate
- Expressing suicidal thoughts
- Strong concern for physical appearance
- Multiple ailments without an obvious cause
In children, you should look for:
- Constant nightmares
- Constant disobedience, aggression, and temper tantrums.
- Worry and anxiety
- Hyperactive behavior
- Noticeable changes in academic performance
Suicide is currently the second leading cause of death in students from ages 10-14 and third among youth ages 15-24 and the 12th overall leading cause of death in the United States.
According to the Mayo Clinic, the risk of suicide increases as people get older, with the most affected group being men and women between 45 and 64. People who are suffering from mental illness, trauma, bullying, addiction, social isolation, relationship issues, and/or a family history of suicide tend to explore this as an option to deal with their suffering. It’s important for us as a society to spread the word and bring awareness to this sensitive topic so that people who are suffering know that it is okay to get the help that they need and provide them information on where to go for that help.
At E3 Family Solutions, we help youth in our programs understand their value and purpose. We also provide warning signs, action steps and resources to students so they can reach out for help and/or can help their friends who may be struggling with depression or suicide ideation. If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts, you are not alone. Call or text 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Hotline, today!
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