Myths About Suicide: A Quick Guide
Myth #1: "Talking about suicide leads to suicide." The opposite is true. Talking about suicide actually helps prevent suicide. Destigmatizing and demystifying conversation about suicide can encourage dialogue, help people understand the signs of suicide, encourage people to seek help, or speak up if they have a friend or loved one who is showing signs of potentially attempting suicide.
Myth #2: "People who think about suicide want to die or kill themselves." Most people who attempt suicide report that they just wanted the pain to stop. This may be due to factors such as major life changes, prolonged and chronic illnesses, and/or mental health issues such as depression. Another myth is that depression is the leading cause of suicide and has the highest mortality rate of all mental health disorders (fact: eating disorders currently have the highest mortality rate.)
Myth #3: "People with mental health disorders are more likely to attempt or die by suicide." Life circumstances like divorce, grief and guilt over losing a loved one, losing a job, sexual assault and domestic violence, etc. can impact someone's sense of self and drive them to self-harm or suicide (it also doesn't happen all the sudden, there are usually warning signs.)
Myth #4: "Only people from specific demographics attempt or die by suicide (e.g. White males.)" Anyone can be impacted by suicide: adults and children, people from all genders and racial backgrounds, etc. Although suicide rates are highest among White middle-aged males in proportion to being a racial/group majority, some groups are disproportionately more affected by suicide than others (for example, veteran and military personnel, displaced LGBTQ youth, Native Americans.) This is often due to historical disenfranchisement.
Do you have any questions? Check out the resources below, or send me a message!
This post was originally published on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/myths-suicide-quick-guide-eliza-mcbride/