This last week was pretty tough. Two people ended their own lives within three days of one other. Two people, who on the outside appeared to have success, to live the lives of their dreams, and who on the the outside looked happy. Kate Spade, a fashion maven, who created a classic purse line without any formal fashion training, and Anthony Bourdain, the renowned chef and acclaimed author from CNN’s Parts Unknown.
When I first heard of these tragedies I immediately thought that you have no idea what someone is going through, and it is best to be kind to everyone that you encounter.
It is really hard for people to understand that money doesn’t necessarily equate to happiness. Many people believe that having money is a sign of success, and often seek out ways to have more. In both of these instances, money did not help save either of their lives.
I recently wrote a post about happiness related to money; it encourages you to look outside of having money for happiness.
The sad thing is that we have no idea what either of them could have been experiencing that led them to that decision. How they may have felt broken or alone, and without a way out other than ending their lives. Hopefully we can all prioritize ourselves and others so that this will not become a trend.
The Rise of Suicide In The United States
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently released updated statistics that suicide has increased 28% from 1999-2000 to 2015-2016. In the US, suicide rates have increased more than 30% in half of the states since 1999.
The report also states that the rate of suicide has increased in middle-aged adults, which is related to job and life stressors; in addition, to the economy and financial struggles.
Although many people assume that mental health is the greatest factor related to completed suicides, statistics show that more than half of the completed suicides were done by people that did not have a known mental health disorder.
How Can You Help?
It is important to realize that taking care of ourselves is vital. Also, it is just as important to love and be kind to others. Think about it, when was the last time that you did something to take care of yourself? How about, the last time that you smiled at someone, said a kind word, or did something for a loved one or even a stranger? You never know how this one act may change your life or the life of someone else!
Be aware that there are signs that show that someone may be at a higher risk of suicide; such as, a recent loss, financial stressors, legal issues, physical or mental conditions, and the use of substances. Others signs can include sleeping too little or too much, isolation, increased anger or anxiety, and expressing feelings of self-harm. Reach out to your loved ones when you notice things are changing, and understand that your presence may be enough. Being available to listen, in a non-judgemental, and non-confrontational may be helpful.
If you or someone that you know needs assistance due to having thoughts of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); they are available every hour of every day.
Text HOME to 741741 to speak to a trained crisis counselor from the Crisis Text Line.
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, is a great resource to find out general information about suicide prevention, and has information about how to help someone at risk.
If you need someone to talk to at a significantly reduced rate, Open Path Psychotherapy Collective has a nationwide network of mental health professionals that are available to provide individual, couples, children, and families in need.
Take care of yourselves and take care of each other. Seek the care you need to ensure that you are okay. If no one has told you today, you are a vital part of this world, you have been spoken over, and your presence is needed!