I found a beautiful project recently called Live Through This. It is a project created by Dese’Rae L. Stage who has lived experience with Bipolar Disorder, self harm and suicide. Live Through This aims to spread awareness about those who survive their suicide attempts.
“Suicide” is a dirty word in this country. It’s a sin. It’s taboo. It’s selfish. It’s not an easy topic to discuss and because we, as a culture, don’t know how to approach it, it’s easily swept under a rug. The problem is that suicide is a pervasive public health issue (the 10th leading cause of death in the US). I get it: we’re afraid of death. But avoiding it and pretending it doesn’t exist is nothing more than willfully perpetuating ignorance.
The intention of Live Through This is to show that everyone is susceptible to depression and suicidal thoughts by sharing portraits and stories of real attempt survivors—people who look just like you. These feelings could affect your mom, your partner, or your brother, and the fear of talking about it can be a killer. -Live Through This Website, The Project
I am a survivor of suicide. When I was 16 years old I overdosed on the psychiatric drugs I was taking. Very few have asked me about the experience and as painful as it can be to speak about it I do want to share the story. I hope this project makes it’s way to Canada as I would love to participate.
I did have the opportunity a few years back to share my story as a suicide survivor with The Toronto Star along with two other survivors. It was a scary experience and I remember being scared that the parents of the children I worked with would read the article and not want their children around me. This never happened. We need to focus on the survival part. What we do with our lives after our attempt usually show our strength and resilience. Society needs to acknowledge that suicides will happen, people will survive and silencing them will do nothing.