Some people think that they really want to die. Of those who survive an attempt on their life, many realise that they actually want to live. We listened to a talk by a man called Kevin who survived jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. He shares his story in an audio clip embedded in an online article . We also listened to the last five minutes of a TED talk: ‘The bridge between suicide and life’ by another man called Kevin Briggs who worked as a policeman on the Golden Gate Bridge involved in suicide prevention.
We listened to these personal stories as a group, and afterwards shared what had touched us. People thought these stories were very moving; the connection that the policeman made with people was life saving. And we realised that for the first Kevin, he still had a mental health problem, he still battles daily with thoughts and voices, so since he attempted suicide his circumstances haven’t changed however he has changed his outlook and he is now able to choose life and we admire him for this.
One group member commented that when a person is ill they are seen as weak, but it doesn’t mean they are not a strong person, but the illness makes it so they can’t get out of bed or do anything. Someone else commented that it is important to make a decision to help yourself, but also to allow yourself to receive help. It’s never too late to do this; a lot of the people the policeman met made this decision standing on the ledge of the bridge, thankfully they made that decision to step back over to safety and give life another shot.
As we thought about ways to take care and try to avoid these crises points, group members observed how important it is to have a good structure, but also to take care not to be so busy that you don’t have time alone. The other end of the spectrum is feeling isolated and not having enough connection with others. This is a crucial factor in the prevention of suicide. If this is you, first of all well done for clicking into this blog, thats a connection right there. Secondly, you can reach out for support, you can do this online, by telephone or in person by accessing services, groups or counselling.