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Between not wanting to live and not wanting to dieAtlantic
August 5, 2022
**Content warning – multiple methods mentioned** Jeffrey Ruoff, the author of this article, describes his experience of having and recovering from suicidal thoughts and mental illness. Ruoff lost his brother Bill, 60, to suicide, after years of experiencing paranoia as a symptom of mental illness. Ruoff talks about how his wife, Glennis, intervened during one of his attempts, resulting in a stay at a psychiatric hospital. For years after, Ruoff continued to experience thoughts of suicide. During these years, one of this brothers would send him postcards regularly, some with messages like, “For the sake of all of us, you don’t have permission to go,” and others with simple observations, “Whatever he writes,” Ruoff says, “The message is love.” He discusses his childhood, and the fact that his parents’ love depended on the brothers receiving good grades – 4 of the 5 receiving PhDs. Ruoff’s recovery involved medication, hypnosis, psychotherapy, EMDR, and ECT. Following ECT treatments, Ruoff found himself in a hypomanic state, and stopped treatment, going back to trying different types of medication alongside psychotherapy. Following a diagnosis of bipolar type II and his 23rd wedding anniversary, Ruoff found himself in recovery, without really knowing why, “Was this latest turnaround triggered by the springtime? A trip to D.C. with my wife and friends? Trace levels of a new medication? I don’t know. I do know that the idea and the ability to write this essay would have been impossible under other circumstances. I am sharing my story of mental illness because I hope it’s a tale worth telling… Revealing it is not weakness, but a kind of resilience. I hope my story provides some comfort and solidarity for those who suffer or have suffered.”

Suicide rate in northern girls 26 times higher, a part of psychiatric crisis
Northeast Now
August 4, 2022
Indigenous girls in northern Saskatchewan have high suicide rates and have been relying on mental health services in Prince Albert, according to Carla Beck of Saskatchewan’s NDP. These services will soon be put on hold as the sole child psychiatrist working there is leaving. “Having one child and adolescent psychiatrist is not enough to really manage the demands of services that are required in Prince Albert and the northern populations it serves,” said Andrew McLetchie, manager of Integrated Northern Health based out of Prince Albert. “There is some uniqueness to the practice in Prince Albert,” McLetchie said. “We serve a population that is about 40 per cent Indigenous, so we are looking for someone who wants to work in an environment that allows them to work with the Indigenous population and to make a difference in that population and the general public.”

‘I didn’t see it coming’: Family planning memorial motorcycle ride helps others struggling with suicideGlobal News
August 3, 2022
Patricia Dawn, 41, died by suicide in February, and her sister, Pauline Staples, and other family members, are remembering her with a memorial motorcycle ride, ‘Forever 41,’ to raise funds for crisis support. The ride will take place August 7, beginning in Airdrie and finishing in Calgary.  Staples says, “She had a caring heart. These people were her life’s work. She was unafraid and right on the front lines,” of Dawn’s work helping people in Vancouver’s downtown east side. Dawn’s niece, Kody Marloe, says, “She had so much childhood trauma, she couldn’t bear to live with it. But I didn’t see it coming… “It’s the best we can do in our lives to keep her soul and memory going. There are other ways, there’s resources and people and there’s so much more out there than what seems like the end.”

Paddy Pimblett’s suicide speech has prompted a spike in the number of men seeking mental health helpMarcas
August 2, 2022
UFC fighter Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett highlighted the importance of men seeking help when they’re struggling with thoughts of suicide in his post-win speech in July. “I woke up around 4 am to a message that one of my friends killed himself… there’s a stigma in this world that men can’t talk. Listen – if you’re a man and you’ve got weight on your shoulders and you think the only way you can solve it is by killing yourself – please speak to someone. Speak to anyone… I would rather (my) mate cry on my shoulder than go to his funeral next week so please, let’s get rid of this stigma and men start talking,” said Pimblett.

A Few Simple Questions Can Help Prevent SuicidePew Research Trusts
August 2, 2022
This article outlines the importance of health care workers screening for suicide in patients, “asking a few direct questions” about suicide. “Each year, thousands of people in the United States see a health care professional weeks or days before they take their own lives. Signs and symptoms of suicidal thoughts or behaviors are often subtle and not immediately apparent to health care providers, so many patients experiencing these symptoms are not screened. These interactions are missed opportunities to connect people to life-saving care.” According to this article, screening all patients is more effective than screening only those exhibiting obvious warning signs, because more people experiencing suicidality are identified, and talking about suicide does not increase the likelihood that a person may think of suicide. A case study of Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas, the country’s largest public hospital system, and adopter of universal suicide screening, is included. 

Fall in suicides driven by fewer women dyingBBC
August 2, 2022
Scottish suicide statistics for 2021 show a 6% decrease, which was due to fewer female sides according to National Records of Scotland. Men have a suicide rate 3.2 times higher than women, and overall, those aged 45 to 54 had the most suicides. People ages 25 to 44 saw a decrease over the past 10 years, when they were previously 1.5 times more likely to die by suicide than those aged 45 to 64. Danielle Rowley, Samaritans Scotland, said, “While we welcome the overall downward trend, particularly a significant reduction among females, we must continue to take action on the range of factors that may contribute to suicide risk,” she said. “This data, and Samaritans’ own research, suggests reaching out to men from lower-income areas – who are at the highest risk of suicide – must be a major focus of preventing suicide in Scotland.”
Related – Samaritans Scotland’s response to the suicide statistics for 2021Samaritans Scotland

Province to provide virtual suicide prevention training to Saskatchewan’s ‘gatekeepers’Regina Leader Post
July 29, 2022
Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Health is funding the training of 1,800 people to take online suicide prevention training as part of their provincial suicide prevention plan, Pillars for Life. “The training will be targeted toward people with limited or no prior suicide prevention training,” a Health Ministry statement explained. “These groups are typically called ‘gatekeepers’ (for example clerical/admin staff, community members, students, volunteers, etc.) as they often are the first contact with a person contemplating suicide and often have the best opportunity to make an initial intervention… Community-based resources and stigma reduction are key components in addressing suicide. The ultimate goal is to decrease suicide deaths in Saskatchewan by building community capacity to recognize the signs of distress and potential suicidal ideation.”

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