I am not an expert on the topic. I have never experienced first hand its complete devastation and permanence. I can't even begin to imagine the pain that is felt when a family member or close friend chooses such an unfortunate path for themselves. Today is a day that is dedicated to world-wide suicide prevention. One day out of 365. But this single day could save even just one life of the seven billion people who walk this earth. And I think even that possibility, regardless of how small it may seem in the grand scheme of things, is worth writing this for.
I took a little stroll on the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention page, and I was shocked at some of the awful statistics I discovered. One of the things that stuck out so strongly for me is the fact that, as of 2013, Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death for Americans.The 9 causes of death that precede it are all health problems or accidents that are in some cases preventable, but in most cases are rarely preventable at all. Let that sink in for a moment...
Suicide is 100% preventable.
One of the most fascinating things I have found in the process of learning more about suicide and suicide prevention has been Project Semicolon. Writers use a semicolon where they originally may have chosen to use a period but decided to continue their sentence instead. In that same way, those who are effected by mental illness are encouraged to be the authors of their own future and decide to choose life over suicide.
Never forget that no matter how small you may seem in this world, no matter how immense your problems are, and regardless of your race, gender, sexual orientation, class, occupation, and so many other social classifications - YOU ARE WORTH SOMETHING. Your life has meaning and you have the power to use your struggle to inspire, encourage, and leave this world a better place thanks to your presence. Don't let yourself or anyone else make you believe that you should choose a period over a semicolon because your life is always a story with writing; you just might have to start a new chapter.
I don't want to sound like one of those infomercials for random lawyers and medical problems but seriously - If you or someone you know might be struggling with thoughts of suicide or mental illness, please don't hesitate to reach out for help. There are so many programs and projects popping up every day and everywhere that are ready and willing to help.
This is the suicide prevention hotline:
1 (800) 273-8255