It is an epidemic sweeping through our country affecting millions. It is quiet and deadly. It doesn’t care who it takes, and who makes it through. It affects everyone directly and indirectly. Several close friends of mine have dealt with this plague we call suicide.

Suicide is never beautiful or poetic. Suicide rates have been raising and have increased by 60% in the last 45 years. It has become a huge problem with young people. There is a link between suicide and mental health, specifically depression and substance abuse, but many suicides can happen impulsively in a time of crisis. 800,000 people die because of suicide every year. Suicide is an intricate problem to prevent, but it can be prevented.

There are several things in place now that are meant to help those struggling. A big one coming up is the Walk for Life. This walk raises awareness for suicide prevention, and it is trying to erase the stigma of talking about it. People need to understand that they have a place to turn to and people to listen to them. Good things can prevail through the sadness. A lot of universities and campuses are now doing QPR training. This training is to help people recognize the hurt in someone else. It stands for “question, persuade, and refer”. After taking this training there is a lot of bravery and lack of comfort in asking someone if they are going to end their own life. That’s why it’s so important. We need to be checking in with one another on a regular basis.

National Suicide Prevention: 1-800-273-8255

-Anonymous Friend