Monday, September 10, 2012

Thanks to those who saved me.

Happy Suicide Prevention Day, everyone!

Happy and suicide seem like oxymorons, but a day in which we talk about mental health and suicide is a good day to me. There are thousands and thousands of people suffering with thoughts of suicide, and it is the 3rd leading cause of death for youth age 15-24. Men are more likely to succeed in suicide, based mostly on their method of choice, (handguns and hanging are popular among males.) Many things can lead to suicidal thoughts, such as mental illness (e.g, depression, schizophrenia, bipolar, ect.) drug use, family breakdowns, abuse, neglect, ect, and are usually accompanied by feelings of hopelessness, and the belief that there is no other alternative.

People who attempt or complete suicide do not want to die. They simply want to put an end to their emotional/mental pain, and often feel that there is no other option for them.
I was rather suicidal through my teenage years, I was rather suicidal, ended up in the hospital once, and did some damage to myself over the years. But this post isn’t about the things I went through, rather, it’s about the numerous people who saved my life, directly or indirectly.

Thank you, Bria, my junior high friend, who found out about my suicide plans and reported it to a teacher. And many thanks to that teacher, who took the report seriously and intervened. I may have hated both of them at the time, but looking back, I couldn’t be more grateful.

Thank you to my ninth grade science teacher, who listened when I told her I “used to want to kill myself.”

Thank you to Leslie, my first girlfriend, who walked with me through every turbulent moment, and listened whenever I needed someone.

Thank you to the English department in high school, who never failed to raise my self-worth

Thank you to Josi, who always understood, and did whatever she could to support me.

Thank you to every counselor who listened to me, offered support, and ways to improve my life. Especially Michelle, who didn’t let me go, even when I tried to get away.

I’m alive today because these people realized something was wrong, and stopped to help, even if it was only to ask, “Are you okay?”

Take an interest in those around you. If someone appears depressed, or has been speaking frequently about death or suicide, take a moment to ask them if they’re all right. You could end up saving someone’s life, even if you don’t know it.


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