Suicide Prevention Week

We need each other.

We need each other.

Today is World #SuicidePreventionDay and this week is #SuicidePreventionWeek.

Almost 10 years ago I lost my brother who took his own life. It was the most painful experience of my life. Gratefully, I was surrounded by friends and family and lots of love which helped me cope. Like many who have lost someone too soon, grieving is an ongoing process for me. My way of coping is channeling my energy on making sure people know that they matter.

I’ve had many clients who have struggled with suicide. One of my first experiences in mental health was volunteering at the Suicide Prevention Hotline. Every week, I’d be on the phone with someone who was on the brink of ending their life. I spoke with many, many people who were in their lowest place, and I did my best to be with them and encourage them to hang on.

Today and everyday, I want you to know that you matter.

I don’t think suicide is the healthiest answer, but to people in pain, I can understand why they go there. I also know that depression distorts the way we see, and sometimes when we can’t see that any other options make sense, we need to choose to trust the people in our lives when they tell us “hang in there, your life is worth living.” This is me saying, “Hang in there. Your life is worth living.”

Today I don’t want to focus on preventing suicide, but on healing. I want to focus on how we can love each other better. I want us to see people who ask for help as heroes, and not weak. So how about this:

Let's be more vocal with the people we love and be extra intentional about expressing it.

Let’s lovingly press in when we see someone silently suffering, and instead of taking their “I’m fine” at face value, let’s trust our instincts and say, “Hey, I just want you to know that I can see that there’s something going on and I care. How are you, really?”

Let’s talk about our ACTUAL feelings and our struggles, so that it makes it easier for us to be real with each other.

Let’s talk about what’s helped us get through the dark seasons and make it standard practice to be open about it, because everyone has low moments.

I’m working on some tips on how to be supportive when a person you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts. If this would be helpful for you, you can sign up to receive my emails on my homepage.

Love you guys. Even if your'e not feeling it right this moment, trust me when I say, you matter SO MUCH.