Suicide Prevention Day is a hugely important day to come together to talk about, inform and educate people on the importance of supporting your mental health and highlight what we can do as victims or witnesses, when we struggle with our mental health.
Studies show that 1 in 5 people globally experience suicidal thoughts, watching someone go through these battles is extremely difficult. So, by providing support and best practices on how we can tackle this dark passenger, we could potentially support those around us, young or old.
As stated by NHS Digital. In the UK, 1 in 4 people between the ages of 17-19 suffer with mental health issues, 1 in 5 between the ages of 20-35 and 1 in 7 from the age of 35+, of which 4.3% of adults suffering with mental health issues, consider *suicide*. To break this down, the female suicide rate last year was 5.5 per 100,000 people, compared to the male suicide rate, which was 15.5 per 100,000 people.

How Can We Support Each Other 

Be Kind – You never know what is happening in someone’s life; your generosity or caring mannerisms could massively alter someone’s thought process for that day. Yes, that makes you a hero. The terminology of “not every hero wears a cape” couldn’t be truer, BUT one thing they do have in common is compassion.
Reach out – I know from personal experience you can surround yourself with many people and still feel lonely.
Like the stats say above, 1 in 5 is a shocking statistic. Reach out to someone, even if they don’t seem upset, and express an interest randomly to one of your family members or colleagues. This provides an outlet for someone to confide in that they didn’t have before.
Evolve – Be in touch with your emotions. Accept you are feeling a certain way, let yourself feel that way and then take action to diminish unhealthy feelings. You can’t control that you have mental health issues, but you can control how you respond to your symptoms.
ACT – If you feel not quite right, and something is bringing you down, speak to someone.
No one knows you better than you do! So speak up and ignore the stigma of poor mental health and how people might judge you, because I can assure you we won’t!
Knowledge – Do you know what support avenues you can take? Hundreds of different support groups and charities in the UK target specialised issues. Alcoholism, mental abuse, physical abuse, etc.… pinpointing the core issue gives the professionals a higher success rate in helping.

Links to useful support groups and statistical knowledge

The Burnt Chef Project

Launched in May 2019 The Burnt Chef Project was setup with the sole intention of eradicating mental health stigma within hospitality. We recently were delighted that they visited some of our team members to talk about what they do and the support and training they provide, to not only support team members but also support other colleagues. They also shared the many options available if anyone is struggling with their mental health.

The story of Kelly and her struggle with mental abuse.

Kelly was a personal friend of mine; we grew up in the same friendship circle.
She was always a burst of energy and always brought a smile to people’s faces. But what you’re about to see, no one saw coming.
A lot of people suffer in silence; they are subjected to many different methods of abuse. Kelly was subjected to mental abuse, years of being told she wasn’t good enough, isolation from the world, losing touch with her friends and family. Her partner bullied her to the point she felt like she was worth nothing, no one knew the extent of it; people had their gut feeling, but nothing was certain. She sadly took her own life, due to the abuse, leaving her children and family behind. The darkness people can fall into is no joke!
She felt alone – she didn’t know the support options for her out there – people asked but didn’t probe too far. This wasn’t anyone’s fault other than the person abusing her, BUT, and I say but in a very non-accusative manner. If there was enough of a support network or information, this could have possibly prevented Kelly from losing her life. This is why I take on suicide prevention as my own personal war to help support a temporary issue without using the wrong permanent solution.
Mental abuse has now been passed as a criminal offence off the back of Kelly’s family’s fight for justice.
There is still a STIGMA around suffering from a mental health illness, depression or suicidal thoughts. However, it is more common than you think. You don’t need to tackle these issues alone; we don’t need to bleed on the inside in, fearing others may think less of you, because we won’t. The more we speak about this, the easier people will find it to come forward.

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