What is Wrong in the Picture?

 In 2021, Tip of the Week

This picture will be a little harder for you, so we are going to give you some information on this one. This picture is taken from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) newsletter for September 2021. The picture is from this blog on the stigma of mental illness, depression, and suicidal thoughts: https://www.nami.org/Blogs/NAMI-Blog/September-2021/How-Kate-Spade-s-Suicide-Opened-My-Eyes-to-the-Impact-of-Stigma. But that’s the point. When someone is having suicidal thoughts, it isn’t always easy to see what is wrong.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, suicide is ranked as the 10th leading cause of deaths in the U.S. at more than 47,500. In 2018, the number of emergency room visits caused by self-harm were more than 312,000. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics workplace deaths caused by suicides increased in 2019 to 307.

What Can We Do? 

1. Learn the warning signs of when what someone is going through is too hard, and they may be about to take their life. They may be experiencing the following:

  • Feeling like a burden.
  • Being isolated.
  • Increased anxiety.
  • Feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
  • Increased substance use.
  • Looking for a way to access lethal means.
  • Increased anger or rage.
  • Extreme mood swings.
  • Expressing hopelessness.
  • Sleeping too little or too much.
  • Talking or posting about wanting to die.
  • Making plans for suicide.

2. Learn to provide support by:

  • Asking what is going on.
  • Doing what you can do to keep them safe and let them know you want them to be safe.
  • Being there. It sounds too simple, but just being there can make a huge difference.
  • Encouraging them to reach out for professional help (see point 3).
  • Following up; suicidal thoughts may not be a one-time occurrence.

3. Learn more about mental illness and what you can do to prevent suicides through research:






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