Suicide is Never the Answer. Seek Help. Help Someone in Need.
September is “National Suicide Prevention Month” and, although it’s still over twenty days away, I though I’d write about it.
Suicide was the 12th leading cause of death in 2020. In the same year, there were an estimated 1.2 million suicide attempts in the United States (source: https://afsp.org/suicide-statistics/). This is alarming and most of it can be prevented.
We live in a time of extravagant conveniences. We have more information at our fingertips than at any other time in history. And we’re never going back. We can get almost anything we want with a few mouse clicks.
As with anything else, these conveniences come with a cost. These conveniences are driving an ever-increasing wedge between us and the ones we love. We are becoming more distracted more often. We are becoming distracted by these modern conveniences. And it’s to the point where our internal radar for detecting distress in others is degrading. It’s at the point where this same radar is unable to recognize distress in ourselves.
Technology is advancing at a rate where, soon enough, we no longer need to interact with another human being to get what we want and need. And as bad as the COVID-19 pandemic was, the number of casualties is only telling one side of the story. The shutdown of society has unseen and intangible consequences that have a long incubation period. The timeline for these symptoms manifesting is in the order of years, not days or months.
You are not alone. We are not alone. At least we don’t have to be. We can always seek help. We should seek help. Thankfully, it’s easier to seek help today than it was before. The stigma of seeking help is slowly subsiding. But we can always do more. We can live more presently by putting down our distracting technology for a moment and telling someone that you care about them. For many, that’s all it may take to get them to back off from the ledge.
If you’re having any thoughts of suicide, or know someone who is, please seek help. Please dial “988” or text “TALK” to 741741.
We’re going to get through this if we all pitch in.