PREFACE***: Don't skip.
Please note this post today carries an air of frustration, turmoil, and anger. It is strictly from my point of view. Additionally, keep in mind that when I use the term 'people,' I'm not referring to everyone in the world. I mean anyone I have encountered. They could be strangers, acquaintances, friends, or family. This post will sound generalized, but it is from one point of view out of many not THE point of view.
Today is world suicide prevention day, and the keyword here, prevention, feels like a slap in the face.
I want you to take a moment to stop what you're doing and sit quietly. This moment of silence is not only in honor of those who were taken by suicide but those who are still here with us today, battling the world around them.
Let's go back to that keyword, prevention, and think about what kind of "preventing" is offered today. From where I stand, there is nothing of quality.
Insurance typically covers procedure/exams that qualify as preventative entirely—this could be an annual physical, eye exam, gynecology appointment, etc.
Insurance coverage of mental health, well it barely exists. There are no policies that I have seen in which a patient is fully covered when seeking preventative care for their sanity. There are no mental health days provided in daily work life. The term suicide, suicidal thoughts/tendencies, and self-harm are gross, "dirty words." And malicious intent people continue to use it as an out of owning up to horrible deads which in return bastardizes the term further.
Schools encourage young kids to go to the doctor when feeling physically ill. Professors remind students to seek help from them when they are struggling with classes.
But where is the advice to see someone when you feel mentally sick? There are practice seminars in case of a shooter coming into a school, but there are no procedures for the at-risk kid to seek help. Most teachers are unable to properly aide their students due to lack of funding, tools, or means to suggest a safe place to go.
Suicide prevention is no longer an individual problem; it's a world issue. We, as a people, are not taking what it means to be suicidal seriously enough.
We need to end the judgment, fear, and prejudice surrounding the term—It's not supposed to be scary. Suicide is a help word used to explain an overwhelming feeling. When someone says, "I'm feeling suicidal, or I'm having self-harm thoughts," don't immediately think, "I don't know what I'd do without them." Think, "How can I help them?" Change your mindset from "oh my god," to, "we can do this."
I'm angry with society, and it's lack of action. It appears that we only do something after the fact: after a mass shooting, after your neighbor's kid hangs himself, after a little boy is bullied and ODs. Let's change this languid tune because I'm worried that if we don't, suicide will become desensitized, like how we react when we pass roadkill. "Oh that's sad, but shit happens."
If you'd like advice on how to handle people experiencing suicidal thoughts, please contact free to reach out to me. If you are experiencing suicidal tendencies, again let me know, or I can suggest a safe place in which to let it all out. There is nothing wrong with anyone who feels these urges or thoughts. You're not alone.
I end this post with one final question, what are you doing to help aide the battle of mental health? What are you doing to prevent suicide?