Preventing SuicideSeptember 10, 2020
Suicidal thoughts, like other mental health conditions, can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, or background. In fact, suicide is often the result of an untreated mental health condition (NAMI, 2020). Suicidal thoughts, although common, should not be considered normal and often indicate more serious issues. Every year thousands of individuals die by suicide, leaving behind their friends and family members to navigate the tragedy of loss. In many cases, friends and families affected by a suicide loss (often called “suicide loss survivors”) are left in the dark (NAMI, 2020). Too often the feelings of shame and stigma prevent them from talking openly about their feelings and pain. Suicide Prevention Week/Month is a time to reach out to those affected by suicide, to raise awareness of this widespread issue, and to connect those who are suffering with treatment services (NAMI, 2020).
September is recognized as National Suicide Prevention Month. At the UH West Oʻahu Library, we want to take some time to share information and resources in an effort to shed light on this highly taboo and stigmatized topic.
- World Suicide Prevention Day (September 10)
A time to remember those affected by suicide, to raise awareness, and to focus efforts on directing treatment to those who need it most.
- National Suicide Prevention Week (September 6-12)
Occurs the week of World Suicide Day. It’s a time to share resources and stories, as well as promote suicide prevention awareness.
#BeThe1To is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s message for National Suicide Prevention Month and beyond, which helps spread the word about actions we can all take to prevent suicide (The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, 2020). The Lifeline network and its partners are working to change the conversation from suicide to suicide prevention, to actions that can promote healing, help, and give hope.
- #BeThe1To Ask
Research shows people who are having thoughts of suicide feel relief when someone asks after them in a caring way. Findings suggest acknowledging and talking about suicide may reduce rather than increase suicidal ideation.
Individuals are more likely to feel less depressed, less suicidal, less overwhelmed, and more hopeful by speaking to someone who listens without judgment.
Studies have also shown that brief, low-cost intervention and supportive, ongoing contact may be an important part of suicide prevention, especially for individuals after they have been discharged from hospitals or care services.
- Crisis Resources
If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call 911 immediately. If you are in crisis or are experiencing difficult or suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255).
UHWO Library Resources
Culture, suicide, and the human condition (link)
Expression and survival: An aesthetic approach to the problem of suicide (link)
Preventing college student suicide (link)
Queer youth suicide, culture and identity: Unliveable lives? (link)
Suicide among the Armed Forces: Understanding the Cost of Service (link)
Suicide in children and adolescents (link)
Teen suicide risk: A practitioner guide to screening, assessment, and management (link)
The international handbook of suicide prevention (link)
The Oxford handbook of suicide and self-injury (link)
The war within: Preventing suicide in the U.S. military (link)
Zachary’s choice: Surviving my child’s suicide (link)
- Journey through the shadows : hope for healing after someone you love has committed suicide (link)
- Suicide Among African American teens and young adults: A discussion for people in a position to help (link)
- Suicide assessment and intervention for the 21st Century (link)
- Teen Suicide: Reach Out (link)
- “Never, never, never give up.” – Winston Churchill
- “Place your hand over your heart, can you feel it? That is called purpose. You’re alive for a reason so don’t ever give up.” – Unknown
- “When you feel like giving up, just remember the reason why you held on for so long.” – Unknown
- “When it is darkest, we can see the stars.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
- “There are far, far better things ahead than anything we leave behind.” – C. S. Lewis
- “Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.” – Christian D. Larson
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. (n.d.). Promote national suicide prevention month. https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/promote-national-suicide-prevention-month/
National Alliance on Mental Illness. (n.d.). Suicide prevention awareness month. https://www.nami.org/get-involved/awareness-events/suicide-prevention-awareness-month
This post was authored by Jessica Mae Vea, a Library Circulation Student Assistant, and UH-West Oʻahu student. Jessica is currently majoring in Public Administration, with a concentration in Healthcare Administration. She is hoping to graduate by Spring 2021! After graduating, Jessica hopes to work at a hospital or healthcare facility. She has worked at the library since January 2020. When not working or studying, she enjoys spending time with her family, friends, and dog (Hagrid)!