Connect. Communicate. Care. World Suicide Prevention Day
Saturday, 10 September, is World Suicide Prevention Day with the theme this year being Connect. Communicate. Care.
Suicide is everyone’s business
The day itself is a reminder to everyone, individuals and organisations alike, that suicide is everyone’s business.
After all, there are very few among us whose life hasn’t been directly affected by the loss of someone through suicide.
We know that social connectedness can reduce the risk of suicide. Being there for someone who has become disconnected could potentially save a life.
Connecting someone at risk with any formal and informal supports available may also help to prevent suicide.
Suicide should be discussed in the same way as any other public health issue.
There can be a fear if it’s discussed widely that this will normalise suicide, but measured, sensitive conversation doesn’t put the idea in people’s heads.
Showing compassion and empathy, and listening in a non-judgemental way to the people in our lives makes them feel valued and connected.
People that have experieneced extreme suicidal thinking and come through it often say sensitively-managed conversations with others were crucial to their recovery.
Asking someone, are they OK and letting them know there’s help, listening and letting them talk can make a big difference.
We need to make a habit of looking out for others who may be struggling, and let them tell their story in their own way. We all need a dig out sometimes but we need people to access help in the way they want and need it.
Reach out to those bereaved by suicide
Suicide can be devastating for families, friends and have an impact on the community. Reaching out to those who have lost someone to suicide is really important. They may be experiencing grief, anger, guilt, disbelief and self-blame.
It can be a tough conversation to have, so we have some advice here on how to listen and be open-minded, and think of the difference it can make.