Suicide Prevention Week
Did you know this week is Suicide Prevention Week? If you've ever wondered if someone you know, like your friend, sibling, or a neighbor, is contemplating suicide, find out what you need to watch out for and who to call for help.
Why Do People Commit Suicide?
When people commit suicide, it means they are killing themselves. Most suicidal people suffer from depression. They're not just sad - they're totally focused on all the bad stuff that's going down in their lives. Maybe it's a bad breakup, a failing grade, a big fight with a parent, or a bullying incident at school. Whatever the problem is, they feel so much pain, rejection and self-hatred that they think there's no reason to continue living. Suicidal people see death as an escape from all their sadness - but most don't want to die. They just want their pain to end, so they think that killing themselves will put a stop to their suffering.
What Are the Warning Signs?
There are usually signs that show someone is planning to commit suicide. Check out a few right here.
- Talking about suicide
- Talking about death
- Feeling depressed
- Feeling hopeless, anxious, or guilty
- Having dramatic mood changes
- Withdrawing from friends and family
- Drinking alcohol, taking drugs, or cutting
- Giving away prized possessions
Who Can You Talk to?
If you or someone you know is suicidal, there is help out there. Talk to your parents, teacher, or school counselor. You can also call a suicide crisis line such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK. If your friend mentions the thought of suicide, take it seriously. Don't assume they're joking and laugh it off. Let them know you care about them, be open and honest, listen to them and call for help right away. They may ask you to keep it a secret, but this is one time when it's okay to break a promise.
Did You Know?
- Suicide Prevention Week is observed from September 8-13, 2008.
- More than one million people commit suicide every year around the world. That's about one suicide every 40 seconds.
- Suicide is the third leading cause of death for 15-24 year olds, and the sixth leading cause of death for 5-14 year olds.
- Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, American novelist Ernest Hemingway, Adolph Hitler and Cleopatra committed suicide.
- Owen Wilson attempted suicide on August 26, 2007, but recovered with the help of friends and family.
- For more help and information, check out the Youth Suicide Prevention Program at www.yspp.org.