Lori Sarvis and Associates

Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade have this week been added to the list of suicides. On that list is Robin Williams, Chester Bennington (lead singer of Linkin Park) and Chris Cornell (lead singer of Soundgarden). These are just a few of the celebrities that have committed suicide. So maybe the adage that ‘wealth brings you happiness’ is just not the case – at least in the case of suicide. The truth is: how we perceive each other based on looks, wealth, and demeanor is sometimes completely wrong. Many people are very good at hiding their inner demons and there are many reasons why someone would take their life.

The Center for Disease Control published last Thursday that reported suicide rates have increased by 12%. On average there are 123 suicides per day. In youth, we lose an average of 113 young people per week.

There are many reasons why someone would take their life. Here are just a few:

  1. History of Depression and/or Anxiety
  2. Loss of a loved one
  3. Struggles with Alcohol and Drugs
  4. Financial losses
  5. Marital problems
  6. Genetic predisposition
  7. Abuse and Traumas
  8. Social isolation
  9. Physical pain that cannot be treated
  10. For youth it may be bullying

Coby Bleakney, at age 12, shot himself with his mothers gun after continuous bullying at school. His parents were aware of the problem but did not know the extent of how it was affecting their son.

Cyberbullying has also contributed to youth suicide. Gabriella Green was found unresponsive after hanging herself due to cyberbullying.

George Eastman, age 77, founder of Kodak and a man who revolutionized photography and invented motion picture film, gathered his friends for a meeting as to how he was going to divide up his estate. After the meeting, he excused himself for a moment and wrote them a note “My work is done. Why wait?” He then left and shot himself in the heart. He had suffered from severe back pain which restricted his social interaction and may have had depression.

Warning Signs of Suicidal Thoughts:

  1. Talking about wanting to die
  2. Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
  3. Talking about being a burden to others
  4. Sleeping too much or too little
  5. Showing anger and seeking revenge
  6. Acting differently/changes in behavior
  7. Loss of interest in school or work (in youth, changes in their grades)
  8. Withdrawal from family or friends

Below is someone who gave me permission to use this. Her father had committed suicide.

“Before you judge someone for committing suicide – know they tried, and were not trying to be selfish but got to a point of darkness where they took the pills, slit their wrist, held that gun to their head and for that split second thought “fuck.” It’s not that they actually want to die, they just don’t feel like living anymore… but know they no longer wanted to be a burden on their friends and family and get sick and tired of going through the same shit and seeing no hope. Yes they make that mistake with a permanent solution to a temporary problem but unless you’ve been to that darkness yourself, understand sometimes it’s just not that easy to keep fighting the same damn demons every day.”

Below is a list of places you can call if you or someone you know may be struggling:

National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
DoSomething.Org (Learn about Cyber Bullying)
The Teen Project (for LGBT youth): 1-866-488-7386
Hotline for Transgender individuals: 1-877-565-8860
Crisis Teen Line using text: 741741

Lori Sarvis, LCSW

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