In 2017 over 6000 people in the UK and Ireland died of suicide, an average of 18 a day 😢 Every life lost represents someone’s partner, child, parent, friend or colleague. For each suicide approximately 135 people suffer intense grief or are otherwise affected. This amounts to 108 million people per year who are profoundly impacted. For every suicide, 25 people make a suicide attempt and many more have serious thoughts of suicide.
Reaching out to people who are going through a difficult time can help. People who are feeling low or suicidal often feel worthless and think that no-one cares. Small things like hearing from friends or family, feeling listened to or just being told that ‘it’s ok to talk’ can make a huge difference.
There are many charities who work everyday to help us and to help the relatives and friends who have lost loved ones. There are too many to list here but ones I have worked with include: the Samaritans.org call📲 116 123 for free and the Lighthouse who offer counselling call: 02890 9075 5070 lighthousecharity.com
I’ve used the image of Thich Nhat Hanh’s calligraphy ‘do not die just because of one emotion’ because I think it is an important message for us. When we feel bad, sad or in despair When there is grief & loss, when we feel hopeless & helpless it is a very lonely place. We need to know 3 very important things:
1) This WILL pass. (Read Matt Haig’s book ‘reasons to stay alive)
2) everyone suffers, you are not alone. It is impossible to go through life without experiencing difficulties and strong emotions. It is the thing that unites us as human beings, we all suffer and feel pain. It is our common humanity.
3) the only appropriate response to suffering is kindness and compassion. When you yourself are suffering this is called self-kindness or self-compassion. Reach out and ask for help. Treat yourself the way you would treat your best friend and just as importantly talk to yourself with kindness and understanding. 💗