Losing a loved one is never an easy thing for anyone to go through. Losing someone to suicide can see a more challenging bereavement process, a different kind of loss. Not only mourning the death of someone close, but feelings of abandonment and rejection can overtake the positive feelings about the person who has died.
Over 800,000 people commit suicide every year, and with 25 times that number making a suicide attempt – it is clearly a topic which we need to talk about. Of course, this is easier said than done.
Many people who have lived through suicide attempts have said that, had they been asked how they were doing, they would have been ready to open up.
World Suicide Prevention Day is held on the 10th September every year, and this year the aim is to encourage conversation and discussion. Just letting someone know that you are there to listen with a non-judgemental ear could make a world of difference.
“Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak”
If someone has got to the stage that they are considering taking their own life, they probably don’t see any other way through their problems. Reinforcing that it ok it is to talk and to want to talk may turn out to be a much needed lifeline. Asking questions so that the person you are concerned about is in charge of the conversation, not pushing for information, and making sure you ask at an appropriate time and in an appropriate place are all things that can contribute towards a helpful and kind discussion.
This reflects the theme of last year’s World Suicide Prevention Day: “Take a minute, change a life”. Events such as this are working towards eradicating the stigma and building community. The International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day is in November, bringing together people who have been affected by suicide whether they have lost someone close to them, or even if they have made a suicide attempt themselves.
“Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble.”
More information and resource for World Suicide Prevention Day 2018 can be found here.