By Desiree Washington - @richierayy
Edited By Brittany Michele - @bee_michele
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States (CDC), claiming over 38,000 lives every year. These alarming rates tell us one thing, WE NEED TO TALK. With the recent passing of Kate Spade and Anthony Bordaine, we are seeing an influx of media conversation about suicide, but have we looked inside our own circles? Our strong friend gets tired. Our families are struggling with identity. Our siblings haven’t been happy in months, and we have not even noticed. 1/2 of all Americans experience a form of depression. Myself included. The prevalence of harmful thoughts and actions are higher amongst ages 18-29. This means we MUST do a better job at caring for each other beyond a simple “wyd?” text. Here are 4 simple things you can do to help:
Let People Know Their Options.
- The National Suicide Prevention Hotline is available 24/7 : 1-800-273-8255 (TALK) - The Trevor Project is a suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ+ youth : 1-866-488-7386
Take Any Form of Suicidal Talk/ Actions Seriously.
- In most cases, our friends/family give us warning signs before. These are NOT for seeking attention, but are a cry for help. Do not judge them or call them crazy.
Understand the Warning Signs
- Warning signs can include (but aren’t limited to) talk about suicide, heightened interest in weapons, increased drug usage, and previous history of attempts.
Be a Friend.
- Regardless if it is friends or family, we all need someone to stand in the gap for us. Be willing to give love. Refrain from using phrases like: “it’s not that bad”. Instead empathic phrases and try to hear them out. To our #GirlBosses out there struggling with identity or contemplating self harm: You are dope. You are important. You impact this world in ways you may not even comprehend. Do not give up, do not give in. I love you.