Counseling for Suicide Prevention

“I want everyone to know that there is hope. We can’t run out of hope, or we’re just going to die, right. But I want the governments to know, we have to do something … you can come and speak to us locals, and we can work with each other and figure it out together, because we can’t do it alone anymore. So we need their help.”

That statement above is made by Jennifer Watkins, president of the National Inuit Youth Council, on the occasion of today’s celebration of the World Suicide Prevention Day. Health Canada reported that national suicide rate for Inuit is 135 per 100,000 people, as compared with 12 per 100,000 for Canada overall. While it is of course alarming that a lot of young Inuits have the highest incidents of suicide in the country, we also have to consider the fact that many people today all over the world consider suicide as a valid option – hope simply runs out.

Most of those in the counseling profession agree that the common link among people who kill themselves is the belief that suicide is the only solution to overwhelming feelings of desperation and depression. Suicide is seen as the only available pathway to take. But the real tragedy of suicide is that these intense negative emotions stop people from seeing that in fact there are solutions.

To be continued in next blog