Talking About Suicide Helps Us Stay Alive
One winter evening in early 2019, I relaxed on a blue sofa as about six people trickled into a dimly lit room for that night’s peer support meeting, which I was leading. After greeting each other and grabbing coffee or flavored seltzer, everyone joined the circle of comfy couches and chairs.
I began the session reflecting on how when we mention our suicidal thoughts, people often see us differently. “They typically ask a checklist of questions about plans to kill ourselves, even when that’s not our intention,” I remember saying. “We’re often coerced into situations that make our lives worse, like being locked in the hospital, having belongings taken away, and being mandated to take drugs.”
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