There’s always a chance, always. We can be the hope and be the change in someone’s decision to stay for just one more day.
On average, one suicide occurs every 12 minutes in the United States, making it the 10th leading cause of death in the United States for all ages. This rate is alarmingly high considering it might just be the most preventable cause of death world-wide if proper intervention occurs.
If someone mentions these feelings to you, what do you notice your initial reaction to be? Are you demeaning, in disbelief, thinking they’re saying it for attention? Please re-think.
The United States’ mental health care system is frankly, unjust. We often see depressed people being mis-labeled as suicidal and in turn being put on psychiatric holds due to their “high risk for self-harm”. Now, I may be wrong, but if I feel isolated and depressed out in public, being trapped in a 20 room brick building with freezer pasta isn’t going to help me much. That being said, I challenge you.
Give someone the idea that they matter, the perception that you care. Don’t just say “I’m here for you” or “Reach out if you need anything”. Actually be there. Visit the person. Talk to them. Be their light. Embrace your day in finding out about their struggles and giving this person a sense of encouragement. Don’t leave until the job is done.
Because ultimately, you do have the opportunity to save a life. You just don’t know it yet.