'SOS is about building individual and collective resilience, empowering everyone to recognise their own self worth'
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SOS - Created in Warwickshire, supporting nationally
Suicide ……. the word that evokes shame, silence and stigma.
These negatives can result in feelings of intense isolation for anyone touched by suicide. Whether someone’s considering it, has attempted it, or bereaved by it.
It’s time to normalise the word. To accept suicide is a growing crisis. To normalise conversations around this taboo subject.
We do not know what impact Covid will, or will not have on suicide rates released next year. But what we know for certain is that anxiety and depression is hitting people hard.
In 2019, 5,691 suicides were registered in England and Wales, and around 3/4 of these were men. (Source: ONS)
How many of these do we hear about? How many do you personally know about?
Only if someone well known ends their life by suicide, or attempts to, does it make the news.
Imagine though, if almost 6000 footballers lost their lives each year, for whatever reason…..
Or there were almost 6000 fatal car crashes involving the same model of car ……..
Or 6000 people lost their lives in aircrashes …..
The chances are we would hear about them. And the would certainly be discussed. There would be CONVERSATIONS on the back of the horror and the outrage.
So why isn’t the same happening with victims of suicide. They are not numbers, no more than any of us are. These were real people, with families and friends, once with hopes and dreams like all of us.
If you are concerned that someone is having thoughts of suicide, ask them directly. They may feel incredibly relieved that someone cares enough to ask. That one question might help them open up more. And by talking, it makes it easier to find the best forms of support for them.
Between 800,000 and 1m people globally die by suicide every year. That’s roughly one every 40 seconds. (Source: WHO) For each suicide, there are a further 20 attempted suicides. That is an amazing number of people affected.
The World Health Organisation provide advice if you feel that your mental health is not at its best. Please click HERE
They also provide some helpful, easy to follow, hints and tips like this one
By the time you’ve popped to the bathroom, or made a cup of tea, or sat down and found something to watch on television, someone, somewhere, has ended their life.
We all want to see a reduction in suicide rates. We are all working hard to support people who are vulnerable. And we must all normalise the word and not just start the conversation, but keep it going.
Let’s stop the shame, stigma and silence and do something good together.