Next week is National Suicide Prevention Week. We have all been touched by suicide in one way or another and I think it’s important that we have some real discussion about the topic.
Suicide and grief are deeply interconnected topics. Not just from the perspective of the grief loved ones feel after a suicide has been completed but the unresolved grief from losses of all kinds that bring up pain and sorrow we don’t know how to deal with. For some the ‘solution’ has been to end the suffering by ending their lives.
This is a great tragedy. The cause is not mental illness either but rather the lack of awareness and education around emotional pain. I remember only too well all the days and nights I spent wanting to be dead, I did not attempt to take my life, I just wanted it to end. The ‘it’ I wanted to end was actually the pain of course but because I had no idea there was anything I could do to help myself after countless hours and days of despair I thought ending my life was probably the only solution.
I know I’m not alone in this. I have known many others who have felt the same way and I know some who followed through.
Suicide is not always about mental illness. In fact, studies in the UK have shown that up to 75% of people who completed suicide had not shown any evidence of mental illness prior to taking their lives. I’m going to take a leap here and guess that most if not all of them were suffering either from emotional or intolerable physical pain and knew of no other recourse.
I want to shout from the rooftops that there is something you can do, particularly with emotional pain!
You can learn to understand and treat your pain and yourself with much more kindness and compassion so you can see through the pain-filled ideas and beliefs that are perpetuating the suffering.
The problem isn’t that there isn’t a solution to emotional suffering, it’s that there is a lack of education about it and I’m on a mission to remedy that, at least to the degree that I can reach people.
On Wednesday September 13th I will be doing a talk, or rather facilitating a conversation about suicide and grief both from the perspective of those who are suffering from the guilt, anger and confusion of having had a loved one complete suicide and from the perspective of how the pain of unresolved grief can lead to suicide, and what we can do about it.
It’s free, it’s open and you’re welcome to come and bring your friends.
The session is being hosted by Westlawn Funeral Home and being held in their beautiful reception room at 16310 Stony Plain Road from 7 pm to 8:30 or so.
Please pass this information on, let me know if you want me to reserve you a seat and join me for a great discussion on a very important topic.