by Comprehensive Staff
Every year, more than 800,000 people around the world die by suicide according to estimates from the World Health Organization. In the United States, 42,773 people died by suicide in 2014, the highest rate in over 30 years. We also know that for every suicide there are another 25 attempts. Given these numbers, it is likely that most everyone has been touched by suicide in some way, whether as a survivor themselves or as the friend or loved one of someone who has been affected.
While these statistics seem daunting, this message is actually one of hope. Suicide is preventable. Anyone can intervene, ask questions, and save a life. Prevention starts with knowing the warning signs that a person may be struggling and learning about the resources in your area.
• Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves
• Looking for a way to kill themselves, such as searching online or buying a gun
• Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
• Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
• Talking about being a burden to others
• Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
• Acting anxious or agitated; or behaving recklessly
• Sleeping too little or too much
• Withdrawing or isolating themselves
• Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge
• Displaying extreme mood swings
Ways to Get Help
• Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255
• Crisis Text Line: START to 741-741
• Trevor Lifeline: 866-488-7386 (for LGBTQ youth)
• Local Crisis Lines
Yakima County: 509-575-4200
Klickitat County: 800-572-8122
Kittitas County: 509-925-9861 or 509-925-4168
Walla Walla County: 509-524-2999
Benton/Franklin Counties: 509-783-0500
Suicide prevention is everyone’s responsibility, but that doesn’t mean you have to do it alone. In honor of World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th, get involved in the important work of preventing suicide. Check in with a friend or loved one you may be concerned about, share prevention information with people you know, volunteer as a crisis responder, or participate in suicide prevention events in your community. There are many ways to show your support for this important cause, and there are tons of great organizations doing this work every day.
If you want to learn more about suicide prevention and intervention, attend one of our 90-minute SAFE Suicide Awareness for Everyone trainings. We use the QPR Method to teach participants how to recognize warning signs, start a conversation about suicide, and offer hope to those who may be in crisis. Contact Jim (firstname.lastname@example.org) to arrange a free training for your community.