Posted by: Postordinandy | September 10, 2014

Suicide [still] is(n’t) painless

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.

Two years ago, I wrote a blog about that – it’s kind of scary to re-read it now. So much has changed since then, and not all of it for the better.

In 2014 The World Health Organisation commissioned a global report on suicide prevention… they found that:

More than 800 000 people die by suicide every year – around one person every 40 seconds“.

 and that:

Suicide occurs all over the world and can take place at almost any age.

It’s a massive problem. The WHO found that around 56% of all violent deaths around the globe are self-inflicted. The recent sad news about Robin Williams and last week of Simone Battle show that money and fame offer no additional protection.

If you work with young people it is likely that as many as one in every 10 you know (around 3 children in every lesson) suffer from a diagnosable mental health disorder, and that the same class contains at least two who self-harm in some way…

Personally, I’m doing okay.

My life is a fair bit away yet from where I would like it to be. There is too much external stress, and my mental health is not great.

But I am doing okay.

The main manifestations of my own Black Dog are physical and mental exhaustion – diet, exercise and sensible bedtimes all help, as does leaving the house and seeing some live music or art, or eating a good meal with friends.

I may live with the Dog for the rest of my life (I hope not), but he is mostly on a leash these days, and a lot smaller than he used to be.

If you find yourself considering suicide, talk to someone you trust – call the Samaritans 08457 90 90 90 if you are scared of what your friends might say or think.

Read this site, (it comes up if you google “I want to die”) which will only take 5 minutes of your time, and brilliantly captures the horrid truth of suicide in the following words:

Suicide is not chosen; it happens when pain exceeds resources for coping with pain.

That’s all it’s about. You are not a bad person, or crazy, or weak, or flawed, because you feel suicidal. It doesn’t even mean that you really want to die – it only means that you have more pain than you can cope with right now. If I start piling weights on your shoulders, you will eventually collapse if I add enough weights… no matter how much you want to remain standing. Willpower has nothing to do with it. Of course you would cheer yourself up, if you could

Some places to go if you suffer with depression, and/or care for someone who does:

To Write Love On Her Arms – A non-profi movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide

Samaritans – especially the resource “Help A Friend In Need” (self-explanatory)

This video is from a fantastic book called “I Had A Black Dog” – I really can’t recommend it enough if you struggle with the mutt:

There is a second video – just as helpful, called “Living With A Black Dog” – especially helpful if you are struggling to know what to/what not to do/say if a loved one struggles.




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