Suicide–I think We Should Be Talking About It Not Cloaking It In Secrecy.


Image result for suicide

A friend of mine’s uncle committed suicide a month ago but has only just been found. In the media report no mention is made of suicide.

In fact, the media have this weird social convention of never mentioning suicide. They will report on the person’s death but they will say things like….a young man was found deceased…there were no suspicious circumstances…..and then at the end of the report they will mention lifeline.

Apparently, this so that the behaviour of suicide is not encouraged.

Well clearly this strategy is not working. Approximately 2000 Australians die from suicide every year. Men are 4 times more likely to die by suicide than women and they use more violent means generally to end their lives. And whilst 2000 Aussies die, many many more attempt it:- Often leaving themselves with life long injuries.

In America, 100 Americans a day commit suicide.

Maybe instead of shrouding suicide in secrecy and talking about it in weird codes and hushed tones, we should bring it out in the open and talk about it. Maybe then we could have genuine and authentic discussions with people who are struggling with suicidal thoughts. Maybe then those impacted by the death of someone by suicide would feel some liberty to talk about it. Or even help people make some sense of a death announcement. I was talking with a young lady this morning and she was saying when she was in school a teacher committed suicide and the announcement that was made was just that he had died…..which caused a lot of puzzled conversation and rumours around the teacher’s death. Maybe it would have just been better to be upfront about it and then invite some honest discussions about how students are feeling etc….it could have possibly really helped the students.

I am not a Psychologist so maybe the premise of this blog is flawed. However from my perspective, I just see the media reporting of suicides to be cloaking something in darkness when I think frank and honest discussions would potentially be healthier.

Anyway that’s what I think.

Here are a couple of blogs related to suicide you might be interested in reading.

Guest Blogger–Kirby Stokes: Writing on a Young Daughter’s Perspective After Being Left Fatherless by Suicide.

Statistics and Information on Suicide for World Suicide Prevention Day

Peter

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5 replies

  1. What I find equally strange is that on one hand a lot is spent on suicide prevention – how effective is questionable – and we are toying in some states with euthanasia – Victoria has approved it – euthanasia is essentially a form of suicide. If we do not value life well we will always struggle with assisting those with depression or insurmountable issues and so suicide will loom bright to the person in difficulties. Their friends will not be able to assist them and any assistance without a true value of life in the mind will be not be capable of long term rescue from suicide.

    The rejection of a creator that should give meaning to life will always put a person in real difficulties when the difficulties of life flare up.

  2. Whenever we don’t treat anything openly and honestly, there are always misconceptions, mis-informations and missed opportunities. One of our children has tried to commit suicide several times… it usually was the result of his life circumstances and the fact that he had isolated himself from others, including us. The majority of the community does not know how to cope with these circumstances, the health system doesn’t either…. an dlike homelessness, and drug and alcohol addictions, those caught and affected won’t change until it becomes an area that is spoken about and understood and solutions found…. no it’s not an a
    Easy path, but it’s one that won’t ever be solved until we start to walk it openly, with all the parties involved…Anne.

  3. Hi Peter

    I have been told that sometime certain things are withheld as suicide can lead to more suicide. A friend lost a loved one and the police would not release certain information to the family for this reason, perhaps they will eventually. Homicide does not tend to lead to more homicide. Not sure if I have explained this correctly. I do agree about not cloaking as it’s such an important issue but certain sensitivities may need to be in place. I have lost a mother and brother in law to suicide. Praying for your friend it is such a gut wrenching loss.

    Thanks Sonya

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