Suicide Prevention Week 2017 ran from Sunday, September 10 to Saturday, September 16. We want to take a moment to thank everyone who took part in raising awareness this week. We also want to share a few messages of hope coming from the Libero team and community.
Lauren Bersaglio (Founder, Libero)
“I spent most of my life trying to fight being alive. Self-destruction comes in a variety of forms. For me it was eating disorders, cutting, compulsive exercise, and suicidal thoughts. It all came to a head when my eating disorder was on track to killing me — and I didn’t care. I was faced with a choice: TO BE, or not to be. I stood at the crossroads. I reflected on my life, what I had, what I’d lost, and where I was headed. In that single profound moment I realized I WANTED TO BE. That was the BEGINNING, the first step. I knew there was more I had to do. If I wanted to be, I had to choose it and fight for it EVERY DAY. That started with changing my behaviours, changing my relationship with myself, and CREATING A LIFE I wanted to live. Slowly I began piecing my life back together. It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, either. 7 years has passed. Not only did I survive, but now I THRIVE. And it’s all thanks to that one committment I made so many years ago and the action that followed. This is #SuicidePreventionWeek and we must ask ourselves, what are we doing to be there for others, but also, what are we doing to be there for OURSELVES? Are you creating a life worth living? We only have today. It’s time to start building.” -@laurenbsag (Founder, Libero)
Kelly Boaz (Libero Contributor)
A powerful message from Libero contributor, @kelly_boaz, for #SuicidePreventionWeek // Post to your account and tag us: @liberomagazine and we’ll share with the entire Libero Community — it’s time to break the silence. ・・・ “*Content Warning* This week is Suicide Prevention Week, and I’ve been thinking long and hard about what I want to say. I am a survivor of multiple suicide attempts. These took place over the course of 5 years. Most of them, nobody knew about. The first time the thought crossed my mind that I should kill myself I was quite young. My first attempt didn’t happen until roughly 15 years later. Between the first thought and the first attempt, I was seen by multiple mental health professionals. The space was never safe enough. The treatment never thorough enough. The follow ups never comprehensive enough. I invariably left feeling broken, hopeless, and alone. Those feelings are a breeding ground for suicide. Our mental health treatment is inadequate. It just is. There are many WONDERFUL individuals within the system, but the system itself is inadequate. Emergency room staff are poorly trained in mental health and, for many sufferers, do more harm than good. If we want to prevent suicide, we need to create safe, welcoming, helpful spaces for people who are struggling. We need to make sure mental health treatment doesn’t leave people feeling trapped in poverty. We need treatment that’s more than mental health first aid, and actually improves quality of life. It’s only through pure luck that I’m alive today. I don’t take that lightly. That’s why I’m talking about it. We can’t prevent suicide if we don’t acknowledge it. We can’t prevent suicide if we don’t talk about all the ways the system fails those with mental illness. Keep talking. And keep holding on.”
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Tabitha Wells (Assistant Editor, Libero)
From Libero’s Assistant Editor @tabi_writes for #SuicidePreventionWeek // share your message and tag us: @liberomagazine and we’ll share it with the Libero Community! – – – – “It’s always difficult to know what will be the one thing that can save a person from themselves; it can be impossible to know if there is anything you could have done or said. If there is one thing, however, that remains one of the most powerful weapons against darkness, it’s LOVE. When I was facing suicide, the biggest driving factor in my decision was how unloved I believed I was. What saved me was BEING LOVED–was having people in my life step out and say ‘We love you more than you know–you not being here would make the world a darker place.’ This WSPD, make sure those close to you know you love them, know the world would be darker without them. Show them the kind of love that pierces through the DARKNESS.” ❤️
Regina Santaella (Libero Contributor)
Sky Walden (Graphics, Libero)
via Libero’s graphic designer @mountainfireflower for #suicidepreventionweek // share your message and tag us: @liberomagazine and we’ll share it with the Libero Community. • • • • “One thing I’ve always held onto in times of struggle is the poem “Saltwater” by Finn Butler: ‘Everyone who terrifies you is 65% water. And everyone you love is made of stardust, and I know sometimes you cannot breathe deeply, and the night sky is no home, and that you are down to your last two percent, but nothing is infinite, not even loss. You are made of the sea and the stars, and one day, you are going to find yourself again.’ -Finn Butler These words remind me that nothing is infinite, not even loss, and one day, I am going to find myself again. So will you. ❤️”
We also want to thank Guest Author Gail McDonnell for sharing her story on our Faith Column about losing her daughter to suicide.
“While it is so important to pour out our hearts to God, don’t hesitate to talk to someone. We went to a counsellor almost immediately, and it really was beneficial….As you heal, hold tight onto God and to each other (your spouse, close friends, family). Join a support group. When you are ready, help others that are going through the same experience. It is a journey, and my hope is that my story will help you along with yours.” Read the full article here.
More to read on suicide:
- Getting Up After Stars Fall (in memory of Chester Bennington)
- A Guide to Watching 13 Reasons Why
- On Suicide (why I chose TO BE)
- Candice: Free from Lies
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PSA: Join our Mental Health Month Campaign!Throughout the month of May, share your definition(s) of Mental Health using #RedefiningMH. You can learn more here. We are also raising $2,000 so we can continue to support and champion Mental Health here at Libero.
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Disclaimer:The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official views, beliefs, or opinions of Libero Network Society. In addition, any advice, tips, or recommendations made within this article should only be followed after consultation with a medical professional and/or your recovery team. Libero Network Society holds no liability for any potential harm, danger, or otherwise damage that may be caused by choosing to follow content from this article.