Unfortunately this month doesn't exist but I wish it did. September is National Suicide Prevention Month but I can't say that I'm a fan. Why?
The social media posts such as #22Kill, school posters, commercials, and TV ad campaigns often leave us feeling more depressed instead of inspired/encouraged. Have you ever felt that way? Where is the hope? Why do we talk about the problem but don't offer a solution? We are aware that there is a suicide problem. We don't need awareness. We need solutions.
Renowned therapist, James Lehman, says that "Less than 20% of suicides are caused by depression. The vast majority are caused by a lack of coping skills." In addition, Freakonomics, a group of experts on the issue of suicide say, "We were able to make a direct correlation between suicide stories published in the media and the rate increasing. In other words, every time a story a suicide published, the rate increases."
So, if sharing tragic stories of suicide causes more suicides, what would make it better?
My suggestion is to tell students stories of resilience and teach coping skills...
Tell them about the man with no arms and no legs that goes swimming, fishing, and plays golf.
Meet Nick Vujicic
Share the story of the boy who opens doors who went from a target of bullying to Prom King.
Meet "The Doorman"
Introduce them to the woman called the "Uglilest Girl in the World" and how the experience transformed her life for the better.
Meet Lizzie Velasquez
Please SHARE these videos with your student and on your social media. Lets flip the script and show our kids that they can BE STRONG!
Raising Resilient Kids & Sharing Hope,