10th September 2018 is World Suicide Prevention Day and our attention is drawn to the scale of deaths by suicide and all those affected by it. Recently there seems to be a decrease in the number of people who take their own lives, but even one life is one is too many.
There are innumerable complexities related to suicide, there is no one or easy solution that can be swiftly implemented to bring the rate down to zero. However, what we can do is talk about it, talk to those who are affected, and provide support to those who need it most.
Here at Solace, suicide impacts us daily. According to research by Professor Sylvia Walby, it is estimated that in the UK 1 in 8 of all suicides and suicide attempts by woman are due to domestic abuse. This equates to just under 200 women dying every year, and almost 10,000 attempting to end their lives due to domestic abuse. We meet them every day – they call our helpline, live in our refuges and work with our community services.
Through our survivor-centred, trauma informed practice, we support women and young people who are affected by domestic abuse and are struggling with suicide to move forward with their lives.
One of the main challenges we face in supporting survivors is stigma. The stigma of abuse and the stigma of suicide often work hand in hand to place blame on those affected. We work with survivors to help them understand their experiences, overcome this stigma, and access appropriate support. We work with our colleagues in other organisations to raise awareness and improve the response survivors get when they access services.
We can all do more. We can all do better.
This World Suicide Prevention day learn what you can do to prevent suicide, little things you can do every day. You can support people who are feeling suicidal by listening to them when they start to open up, look out for them and show compassion and care. And, start to talk about the issue; find out more about suicide and how it affects people; raise awareness by talking to others about it and question and challenge the stigma around suicide.
By working together to raise awareness and understanding, we can reach out to those affected by suicide, we can reduce the stigma they face, and we can help them move forward to a more hopeful future.
Below are some organisations where you can seek support if you or someone you know is feeling suicidal:
If confidentiality is important to you - make sure to check out the services policy as they may differ from Solace’s.
NHS Choices – Suicide
Comprehensive help and information from NHS Choices with links to external websites.
Tel: 116 123
Samaritans is available round the clock, every single day of the year. They provide a safe place for anyone struggling to cope, whoever they are, however they feel, whatever life has done to them. You can email [email protected], or visit samaritans.org to find details of the nearest branch.
MindInfoline: 0300 123 3393 or text 86463
The MindinfoLine offers thousands of caller’s confidential help on a range of mental health issues. Mind helps people take control of their mental health. We do this by providing high-quality information and advice, and campaigning to promote and protect good mental health for everyone. They also provide a special legal service to the public, lawyers and mental health workers.
Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM)
Helpline: 0800 58 58 58
CALM works to prevent male suicide and offers support services for any man who is struggling or in crisis. Men in the UK who need to talk or find information and support. The services are open 5pm–midnight daily and are free, anonymous and confidential.
Call: 0800 068 41 41
Hours: 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends
Support for young people (under 35) dealing with suicide, depression or emotional distress or anyone concerned about a young person.
Helpline: 0800 11 11
ChildLine is a counselling service for children and young people. You can contact ChildLine about anything - no problem is too big or too small. If you are feeling scared or out of control or just want to talk to someone you can contact ChildLine
Kooth provides free, safe and anonymous support for young people.
Helpline: 0808 802 5544
Parents' Information Service gives advice to parents or carers who may be concerned about the mental health or emotional wellbeing of a child or young person.
Helpline: 0808 808 4994
Life’s tough, we know that. It can throw a lot your way and make it hard to know what the hell to do with it all. So, welcome to The Mix. Whether you’re 13, 25, or any age in between, we’re here to take on the embarrassing problems, weird questions, and please-don’t- make-me- say-it- out-loud thoughts you have. You can call, use or 1-2-1 Chat or Crisis messenger.
Students Against Depression
Students Against Depression is a website offering advice, information, guidance and resources to those affected by low mood, depression and suicidal thinking.
Tel: 020 7263 7070
At Maytree, we provide people in the midst of a suicidal crisis with the opportunity for rest and reflection, and give them the opportunity to stay in a calm, safe and relaxed environment. We can support four "guests" at a time. The service runs 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Guidance titled: Preventing Suicide - For Practitioners Working With Vulnerable People published by the Public Health Business Support Team, NHS