Additional Suicide Help
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Guidelines for 2018, who track these statistics in the USA< 'suicide is the leading cause of death for Americans ages 10-45 years old and it is a tragedy for families and communities across the country. From individuals and communities, to employers and healthcare professionals, everyone can play a role in efforts to help save lives and reverse the troubling rise in suicides.' More than half of the people who died by suicide, did not have a known diagnosed mental health condition at the time of death. People who have problems with relationships, substance abuse and misuse, money, jobs, housing, recent or impending crisis, physical health problems and legal factors contribute to the risks of suicide. There were more than 45,000 suicides in the US in 2016, more than twice the number of homicides in that year. Historically, men had a higher death rate than women. This trend is equalizing, not because men are committing suicide less, but because women are resorting to this more.
According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, in 2017, there were 47,173 Americans who died by suicide and 1,400,000 suicide attempts. On average, there are 129 suicides per day in the US and the rate is the highest for middle aged white males. AFSP's Medical Director, Christine Moutier stated, "I think it gets back to teaching people how to manage break-ups and job stressors. What are we doing as a nation to help people manage these things? Because anybody can experience those stressors".
The director of the National Institute of Mental Health, Josh A. Gordon, states "Research shows a big difference in reducing suicide rates and one of the most important things to note is that suicide is not just an issue for the mentally ill, but for anyone struggling with serious lifestyle issues.
Additionally, in a sermon called "There is Hope, Breaking the Silence on the Issue of Suicide" by Dr. Joe Bufford. He suggested even Jesus was tempted by Satan to commit suicide. Jesus was led into the wilderness, as a test by God, but Satan wanted Jesus to fail. Dr. Bufford stated" Satan wanted Jesus to throw himself down from the pinnacle (or highest point) of the temple, some 180 feet from the ground, and see if the Father would protect him from death." Satan even quoted scripture. He knows scriptures, but he does not believe them. Dr. Bufford stated, " Jesus did not tempt the Father and neither should you." He encourages us all to watch for warning signs, when people may be considering suicide: such as isolating themselves and encourages us to not isolate ourselves when we may have those thoughts; watching for people who talk of wanting to die or make statements concerning depression or loneliness or loss of hope and when hearing this, we need to engage them in conversation, pull parents or friends in, pay attention to their journals and social media; and to watch and not ignore irrational behaviors that could be a cry for help.
He also stated "There is a book, called the Bible, that is God's Love Letter to you. It can be a source of encouragement during hard times and everyday life." Dr. Bufford further stated, "You don't have to understand God to trust God(Isaiah 55:9 ; Romans 8:28 ; and I Corinthians 13: 11-12); Nothing, not even suicide can separate us from the love of Christ, Romans 8:38-39; And, God takes your scars and uses them for his glory, so let Him, ( I Peter 4:1-3 and John 2:24-29)". He concluded by saying, "Sometimes it takes a scar for someone to believe in Jesus."
I AM A SURVIVOR
This is the testimony of someone that has been in the low place where you might be now. Please read her story and hopefully you can find your way out.
You Are Not Alone
I've been where you are. Sick and tired of being sick and tired, so broken and beaten down by life, hopeless, lost, friendless, or so it seemed. I had tried everything. When I was younger, I self-treated with alcohol, pot, over-the-counter remedies, religion, meditation, self-help books, counseling, sleeping long hours, not sleeping at all, positive thinking, you name it, for years. I have read "the maddening aspect of depression is how it saps the person's desire and ability to do anything about it," (author unknown). Yes, every new onset of depression was worse than the last. In between, I was able to function, somewhat, but felt like the walking dead. I was alive, but numb. I felt nothing, not sad or angry, but with no hope in the world of anything getting better. To beat all, I was saved, changed to new life in Christ Jesus, in 1986 and through prayers and support from Godly friends, I was able to lay down the cigarettes, booze and pot and felt alive for the first time since being a small child.
Still the bouts of depression came, each one worse than the last. I could not for the life of me throw it off. The last round, in 2009, was the worst. My job performance slipped due to relentless fatigue and sleeplessness. My family and social life had grown to be such a burden, as I felt everyone's pain, like it was my own and I could not help anyone. Friends stopped coming around. I stopped going anywhere. I sought out psychiatric help and medications, but thoughts of suicide would not leave me alone. I had started a new medication for depression that made those thoughts more prevalent, so I stopped taking the medication. About the third day without medication, I started feeling some better, but the suicidal thoughts became worse. I was such a burden to my family, that I loved with all my heart, the only thing I could think about was getting some peace, for myself and them, as the emotional and physical pain was so intense, I could hardly breathe or get out of bed and the repetitious reminders of past mistakes, nightmares and suicidal thoughts would not go away. Peace was unattainable and thoughts of being able to die and awaken and see my savior's face were so compelling. I thought it was a win-win situation for everyone.
My life insurance policy was exactly two years in effect, on August 18, 2009, so I waited until the next day to ensure my family had the money they would need and not live in poverty, as the suicide clause would no longer keep them from collecting my insurance. That morning, I found my husband's medications had been newly refilled and being a "good nurse" , I was pretty sure I could concoct the perfect formula to guarantee success with my mission, despite how cloudy my judgement had become. I mixed large quantities of pain medications, muscle relaxers, antidepressants I had stored up and a medication to prevent nausea, which I also knew would potentiate the effect of the other medications, stirred this into a bowl of ice cream and consumed it all. Within minutes, I felt the pain leaving my body and finally peace flooding my soul. That's the last thing I remembered until I awoke under a horrible bright light, staring up at my husband's scowling face, saying, "do you know what you did?" I thought he was upset because I took his medications. I had been alone some eight hours; it should have worked. I fell back to sleep, angry and afraid. I spent several days in the hospital and then was sent to a psychiatric facility for eleven days of intensive treatment. I remember walking across the parking lot to the facility, in my floppy tennis shoes, with no laces to hang myself with and reality sunk in.
I have never in my life experienced such loneliness and brokenness. I couldn't even kill myself right. All I could cling to was my Bible and the word of God for comfort, which seemed to be love letters, written only for me. My husband could only visit me on Saturdays and I was surprised he even showed up on the first one and yet he still wanted me well and to come home. Slowly the healing began. It would be months before I could return to work and then I felt the need to prove myself capable, that was overwhelming, yet God never let go of me, this whole time. He led me through the valley and brought me to the other side, the side I could not even envision was possible. Thankfully I was hospitalized and received excellent therapy, counseling and a new medication, that has been true life changing experience for me. I understand that there are chemical imbalances in the brain, much like chemical imbalances in the body, like diabetes, that require medications and treatment. I've gotten over the stigma that sometimes attaches itself to mental illness. I seek God's friendship and fellowship every day, thanking him for another chance at life and try to take better care of my body, mind, spirit and soul.
As a nurse, I have seen the aftermath of suicide attempts and tormented souls, who were forced to deal with botched suicide attempts. One man, who placed a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger, had to live with no teeth, a partial tongue and his mouth blown off. One young man placed a gun under his chin and blew out his left eyeball and lived, with an exit wound on top of his head. I have attempted to comfort many, who had charcoal forced into their bellies, to neutralize the ingested toxins, and held their hand and pulled back their hair, while they vomited and experienced blackened stools. I've assisted while they coded, as many as five times and still lived. After working in the units at the hospital and in the Psychiatric Hospital, I have always said, 'If God was ready to take you home, no man or machine was going to keep you here'.
Now I realized, if God needs you here on earth, you will stay. Put your hand over your heart. Feel that? It's a heartbeat. That means God still has a purpose for your life. My only purpose may be to tell you my story and to trust Him. If you have a breath left in your body, no matter what is going on in your life, no matter how big a burden you feel to yourself or your family, you still have a purpose to God. He loves YOU! He needs you to trust Him. He will save you. Perhaps you have made some bad decisions in your life, believe me, it is not the end of the world. Give your heart to Jesus, ask him to come into your heart. Confess your sins and ask for forgiveness and His help to make things right. He doesn't remove the consequences of our sins, but He will help you live with them and restore your hope.
My life's verse is PSALMS 40 : 2 : "He lifted me out of the pit of destruction, out of the mud and mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along."
A Suicide Survivor