Suicide Prevention in Youth

I’m not sure how long it’ll take to figure out or how effective it’ll be but it’s encouraging to read about the possibility of predicting suicide in youth. Think about it. Thousands of 15-24 year olds are dying by suicide every year. Even the slightest increase in predictability could save hundreds.

When I read this article I thought about how Drey used his phone to communicate his thoughts, his goodbyes, an argument with a friend, and so on in his last hours. My stomach still twists into knots.

It’s amazing how excited I get about advancements being made while simultaneously feeling devastated these came too late for Drey. I suppose anyone who has lost a loved one can relate to that. So many new advancements in treating cancer, heart disease, etc. On average people born in the early 1900’s didn’t make it to the age of 50. Now we’re living well into our 80’s and longer.

I don’t know. Maybe what’s frustrating is how there’s still stigma around suicide. Many people still believe that someone who kills themselves is selfish, taking the easy way out, and that they had a choice. “Choice.” I’m sure some people who die by suicide did make a “choice.” But most are experiencing huge feelings of hopelessness and despair. And they don’t believe it’ll ever change. Suicide is the only way of ending their pain and relieving their friends & family of the perceived burden they think they’ve become. It doesn’t take much digging to find this kind of thinking. My anger shoots from 0 to 10 in a heartbeat. I’ve learned to steer clear of online comments that are posted in response to a suicide.

Thankfully I can make choices. Not just a choice to live but a choice about what I think about. I don’t take that for granted. My emotions carried me 100% of the time in the first few years after Drey died. It’s nice to be able to chose what I think about again. Freedom, joy, peace.

2 thoughts on “Suicide Prevention in Youth

  1. I am always touched by your articles. I started reading them before I was blessed enough to meet you. You make a difference in the dark world of suicide. Your fight for those who have lost would make Drey proud of you. God will bless you in your work.

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