September is National Suicide Prevention Month. This important month puts the spotlight on mental health advocates and experts to raise awareness about suicide prevention, as well as giving others the chance to speak out on the topic.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline has a way that you can acknowledge Suicide Prevention Month, called #BeThe1To. #BeThe1To reminds you to do the following if you know someone in a mental or emotional crisis situation: Ask seriously about your loved one’s wellbeing, be there for your loved one, keep them safe by limiting access to means to inflict self-harm, help them stay connected with a network of people who care, and follow up with them after they have been released from the care of mental health professionals.
Suicidal thoughts can affect anyone, regardless of their age, race, gender, or background, so it’s important to avoid thinking that just because someone you love is a certain age or gender, they’re gonna be okay. While suicidal thoughts are not shameful, they should never be treated as normal, and should always be taken seriously. If someone you love is suggesting that they experience suicidal thoughts, you should reach out to them, and think seriously about what the best way to intervene and offer help might be.
If you believe that the person is an immediate danger to themselves, call 911. The national suicide prevention hotline, 1-800-273 TALK (8255), can be another important resource.
To learn more about National Suicide Prevention Month, check out The Suicide Prevention Lifeline and National Alliance for Mental Illness webpages for more stats, resources, and important information.