This month, you might be noticing more articles or posts on social media about the topic of suicide. During the month of September (deemed Suicide Prevention Awareness Month), different mental health, suicide prevention, and support organizations make an intentional effort to spread awareness about the reality and dangers of suicide. By doing so, they create space for more conversation around this difficult and sensitive topic, and work to provide those struggling (or the loved ones of those struggling) with resources and even more so with hope to keep fighting and to seek help.
Suicide is naturally somewhat of a taboo topic. Whether we talk about it or not, it is a reality that affects most people one way or another, whether you’ve lost someone to suicide, know someone struggling with it, attempted suicide yourself, or dealt with hopeless/suicidal thoughts. Regardless of how uncomfortable the topic makes us, it is relevant and worth talking about.
In the coming weeks, I will post a blog about why it’s important to talk about the topic of suicide. For now, though, this post is simply a collection of resources. There are so many organizations and programs that have been founded upon the fact that your life matters, and that we want you to stay. Below is a list of some of the resources that exist to be a lifeline to those struggling with thoughts or ideas about suicide. This is by no means an extensive list, but it can be helpful to see several options all in one place.
If you are in crisis or are experiencing suicidal or difficult thoughts, all of the options below are there for you, most of them available 24/7. Please don’t hesitate to call, text or chat. These resources are here for you!!
General resources, for anyone:
- If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call 911 immediately. (24/7)
- Go to the nearest hospital or emergency room. (24/7)
- Call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273 TALK (8255). (24/7)
- If you’re uncomfortable talking on the phone, you can also text “HELLO” or “NAMI” to 741-741 to be connected to a free, trained crisis counselor on the Crisis Text Line. (24/7)
- Message someone via online chat here https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/chat/. (24/7)
The deaf and hard of hearing can contact the Lifeline via TTY at 1-800-799-4889.
Resources specifically for LGBTQ youth struggling with suicidal thoughts:
- The Trevor Project hotline 866-488-7386. (24/7)
- The Trevor Project text line: text “START” to 678678. (Mondays-Fridays from 3pm to 10pm EST/12pm to 7pm PST)
- Use the Trevor Project chat feature here https://www.thetrevorproject.org/get-help-now/. (every day 3 pm to 10 pm EST/12 pm to 7 pm PST)
Resources specifically for Veterans struggling with suicidal thoughts (staffed by qualified responders from the Dept of Veterans Affairs, anyone can call/chat/text):
- Call the hotline at 800-273-8255 and press 1. (24/7)
- Text 838255. (24/7)
- Message someone online at www.veteranscrisisline.net/get-help/chat. (24/7)
Resources for people who are wanting to learn more or support those struggling with suicidality:
- NAMI helpline for questions 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or [email protected]
- NAMI website https://www.nami.org/Learn-More
- To Write Love on Her Arms website https://twloha.com
- Suicide Awareness Voices of Education website https://save.org
- The Jed Foundation website https://www.jedfoundation.org/who-we-are/
- The Illinois Department of Public Health website http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/prevention-wellness/suicide-prevention
- The Suicide Prevention Resource Center website (with resources by state!) http://www.sprc.org
Written by therapist Clair Miller
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