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What You Need to Know As a Survivor of Suicide | Survivors of Suicide Day

Survivors of Suicide Day Is November 17, 2018.

National Survivors of Suicide Day is a day of remembrance for those left behind by the dirge of suicide.

Survivors of Suicide Day gives those who have lost a loved one to suicide a moment to pause and remember their loved one, find support, and continue the life-long process of accepting and healing.

Suicide intimately disrupts the lives of approximately 18 survivors of suicide.

Your pain is real; your hurt matters and begs expression.  

Survivors of suicide suffer from:

  • Increased depression
  • Prolonged grief
  • Imagined and misplaced blame
  • Guilt
  • Suicidal Ideation
  • Abandonment and rejection complications
  • Rejection from others holding a stigma against suicide

Why Do People Commit Suicide?

Suicide isn’t about you.

Despite this, the suicide of a loved one leaves us marred just the same.

Understanding suicidal ideation is a slippery slope of unanswered questions, feelings of inadequacy, and an acute longing to go back and change the past.

People commit suicide for a variety of different reasons. An overarching theme shared by many victims of suicide are feelings of:

  • Hopelessness
  • Dejected loneliness
  • Unresolved feelings of emptiness
  • Emotional dysregulation and lack of impulse control
  • Untreated mental health disorders
  • Chronic depression (Also: suicidal depression)

People commit suicide because they’re tired of living in constant emotional pain— not necessarily because they want to die.

It has nothing to do with what you did or didn’t do.

That’s why suicide isn’t about you.

It’s not your fault. Suicide is the culmination of untold misery too heavy to bear.

90 percent of people who commit suicide suffer from an untreated mental illness.

Suicide is the manifestation of disease— not a measure of your self-worth or “worthiness” to live for.

It’s not your job to keep your loved ones alive.

It’s a near-impossible task if they’re not open to getting help.

6 Common Suicidal Ideation Mental Illnesses

  1. Borderline Personality Disorder: Heralds a ten percent chance of completed suicide risk for those with BPD and BPD symptoms

  2. Bipolar Disorder: 15 percent of people with bipolar disorder will commit suicide.

  3. Addiction: People with chronic substance use disorders have a six time increased risk of suicide.

  4. PTSD: 27 percent of those suffering from PTSD have attempted suicide.

  5. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: People with OCD are ten times more likely to commit suicide than those without the disorder.

  6. Eating Disorders: Although there are many types of eating disorders of concern, in general, 11.8 percent of those with untreated eating disorders attempt to commit suicide.

Specifically, attempted suicide is common among those with anorexia or bulimia nervosa.

Remembering Loved Ones Lost for Survivors of Suicide Day

Suicide isn’t about you—- but the aftermath of loss is singularly about you.

Left to deal with the emptiness, confusion, grief, and anger of losing a loved one, it is imperative to get help for you, too.

Remembering the loss of your loved ones of November 17th is only half the battle. Take a moment to separate yourself from the everyday tasks of your life and prioritize self-care.

Express yourself in any way you need to. Scream, cry, pound your fists into a pillow— let it all out. Wrangle someone you trust and unload on them, for once.

Your mental health matters too.

And in the age of technology, there’s no excuse to not see a therapist or psychiatrist.

I recently had a mental break down that rendered me unable to work. I was unable to leave my home and remain calm and collected— I couldn’t even make it to a doctor’s office without falling apart.

But I continued looking for help anyway. And I found it on my smartphone.

That’s right— I spoke to a psychiatrist via video chat and was given the aid I needed.

You can too.  

Ending the Self-Stigma of Suicide

That’s right.

What you think about the death of your loved one probably isn’t true.

Survivors of suicide disproportionately carry guilt, shame, and unfair feelings of responsibility for the death of their loved one.

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again:

You are not responsible for keeping anyone from committing suicide.

Suicide is a personal choice we wish we could shield our loved ones from.

But the truth is, we can’t.

Their death is not your fault.

If you can’t shake feelings of deep-seated guilt, shame, and dejection after the death of a loved one, please get help.

A study published by The National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health dictates survivors of suicide require intervention to prevent significant mental health detriments.

Read This If You’re Thinking About Committing Suicide

You are loved.

Even if you don’t feel it.

The darkness is a liar and a thief.

I’ve chanted this mantra to myself for the last two years since it was published.

Even if you don’t want help for yourself, get help for your loved ones. Your death will set the stage of unending trauma for the people you love the most— quite possibly catapulting them into the same dejected loneliness you suffer from every day.

Now more than ever getting help for mental health disorders is more accessible, more effective, and will inject the vigor of life back into the darkness.

It’s not too late to get help.

Please.

As someone who has struggled with suicidal ideation from the age of 13, I plead with you from a place of deep understanding. There is always just one more reason to keep fighting.

If you can’t find a reason within yourself, look outwards.

All eyes are on you— even if you don’t notice them.

Just one more day.

Related Reading:

Suicide Prevention Week