Letter: Suicide is preventable, so let's start talking
In Massachusetts, suicide claims nearly a dozen lives a week, far more than motor vehicle accidents and homicides, yet it is rarely discussed in public or the media. Suicide is one of the most preventable types of death, and there is nothing shameful about having a conversation or seeking treatment related to suicidal thoughts.
September 10-16 is National Suicide Prevention Week and the time to continue a healthy dialogue around suicide prevention, while promoting resources that increase resilience. We need to reach out to schools, elected officials and community members about this public health issue. Multiple risk factors contribute to suicide, including trauma, alcohol and drug abuse, mental illness and isolation. All demographics are impacted and no one is immune. Prevention depends on friends, family and support networks having open conversations with at-risk individuals and loss survivors.
In October, the Berkshire County Suicide Prevention Coalition will be hosting events, including an "Out of the Darkness" walk in Adams and a screening of "The S Word" in Pittsfield. Join us to create a community where we break the silence around suicide.
The writer is co-chair of the Berkshire Coalition for Suicide Prevention.
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