“Welcome to A club that no one wants to belong to“. is the introduction shared by the group facilitator of a support group I attend monthly for people affected by the suicide of loved ones. I really didn’t believe I would be in this club.
In the space of a short week, I have been at ours with my beautiful baby Harvey the familyChristmas night out, to visit by the police to say that Harvey had died.
Death is a full stop for the dying – but as for all who mourn suicide You know, for those who mourn that death, it’s a new beginning forever. The phrase “my the world It doesn’t even come close to describing where I and everyone else who loves them are a year from now.
This support group is my lifeline. It is run by volunteers, with space donated by a church.
All of us have expressed our sorrow at the number of people present even as we live there in various sad situations. I have seen the group grow each week. The size of this close-knit support group is such that sometimes we can barely hear each other in the circle, and I can tell you, it’s very difficult to project one’s voice to over 30 people – especially when you’re talking. Your loss and your pain.
are Many people are affected by suicide, because the UK has a very high suicide rate. This has remained unchanged for the past 20 years – for the very short life of my child.
Each month group members share their experiences of the UK’s crumbling mental health services; Due to the lack of checks and balances – which were in place – we might not be in this group at all.
The mental health crisis for the nation’s youth has never been more acute – it affects everyone who experiences it and has a particularly devastating impact on young minds.
Harvey’s death at age 20 has resonated with many because their identities intersect with many demographic groups that experience. The intense pressure of marginalization: Young people, neurodiverse people, non-binary people, ethnically diverse people – people who navigate life everyday in ways that most of us don’t even consider.
The Harvey Parker Trust, which launches with a concert at London’s Southbank Center at the end of April, has been created to spotlight the need for greater visibility of young people’s mental health challenges, supported by some of the world’s most celebrated artists. the face
Not only are we addressing the need for care, but we’re also building resources: we’re training young people to provide small-group peer mental health care. We are doing this because the burden of need on NHS services means that those in need are dying every day, due to the fact that they are not getting the support they need in time.
We urgently need to improve training, recognition, support and suicide prevention in schools and learning environments.
When it comes to suicide, most of us fall into two camps. In one camp are those who rarely contemplate suicide; who can Answer the title About suicide with a sympathetic face before moving on to the next news item. Then there are others for whom the sound of suicidal thoughts is like background music. It dials up or down depending on what’s going on around them – but is always there, hidden.
What we need is to swap focus for those groups. For those who rarely think about suicide, there are tools to be aware of the background of others’ thoughts, and to help them when needed.
The government needs to fast-track a comprehensive strategy to reduce the number of people who end their lives. Improved and universal training for GPs and police on identification and identification Supporting someone in crisis Just a starting point; Mandatory mental health first aid or equivalent training is also required in all workplaces; It is important to raise awareness about how to recognize the signs of crisis and how to provide support.
This care needs to start from school, and includes all of us, not just professionals. This is why the Trust will provide peer-learning mental health networks to ensure we all get better when problems arise. It will hopefully allow those for whom the dial has been dialed too loud to know and understand that they are with us, and that life is worth living.
We have a duty to care for each other – and schools play an invaluable role in creating caring people. Governments can help do that by ensuring that conversations about suicide prevention are a key part of our nation’s well-being strategy.
The The Harvey Parker Trust It will have a launch concert at the Southbank Center on 30 April, for which tickets are available here
If you are experiencing feelings of sadness, or struggling to cope, you can call Samaritans on 116 123 (UK and ROI), email [email protected], or visit Samaritans. Website Find your nearest branch details.
If you are in the United States, and you or someone you know needs mental health help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). This is a free, confidential crisis hotline available to anyone 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you are in another country, you can go www.befrienders.org To find your nearest helpline.