Every Sunday night Doc and I cuddle in bed to watch one of our favorite shows, “Parts Unknown” starring Anthony Bourdain. We loved how every week he introduced us to different food, culture and social issues. He connected with others through his transparency, adventurous spirit and great curiosity. That’s why it was so shocking when I heard Doc gasp as she read the news on-line that he apparently hanged himself. Earlier in the week designer Kate Spade committed suicide by hanging as well. On the outside both of theses celebrities appeared like they had everything. It just goes to show that you never know what demons people wrestle with deep in their souls. Sadly, Anthony and Kate are not the only ones, as by the time you finish this blog another person will have taken their own life.
In 2016 there were 44,965 recorded suicides in the United States having increased 24% between 1999 and 2014. ( CDC’S National Center for Health Statistics) Suicide has become a major national public health issue. It is the 10th leading cause of death overall.
In Doc’s many years counseling others she has talked to those wanting to kill themselves along with the families of those that have lost loved ones to suicide. It is always heart wrenching. People’s pain is not always visible on the surface and often they hide their feelings frightened they will be judged or shamed. If there is a lesson from these most recent losses it is this; humans suffer painful experiences and we need to support each other through these times with unconditional love and compassion for each other.
If you are thinking about suicide or someone you love needs emotional support call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7 at (1-800-273-8255).