Misc

Reaction to the President of the American Association of Suicidology’s Letter of Resignation

Reaction to the President of the American Association of Suicidology’s Letter of Resignation

On August 30, 2021, Jonathan Singer, PhD, LCSW, announced his resignation from the presidency of the American Association of Suicidology. At his request, I posted his resignation letter here in order to make the letter accessible to as many people as possible. On Sept. 14, he asked me to remove the letter, and I did. […]

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To Whom It May Concern: The American Association of Suicidology

To Whom It May Concern: The American Association of Suicidology

  Update 8/18/21: AAS posted a response today to the letter below. You can find their response here.  The American Association of Suicidology has been through a lot of turmoil. Earlier this summer, the national non-profit fired its executive director and didn’t tell any of its members until somebody else posted about it on Twitter […]

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In Defense of Suicide Prevention

In Defense of Suicide Prevention

Many people take offense at my stance on suicide prevention. They send me angry emails or texts. They post challenging comments on this site. Some people are so passionate about the right to die by suicide that they resort to harassment. I have received threatening missives and calls from numerous people, some of whom advise me […]

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Language Matters: Committed Suicide vs. Completed Suicide vs. Died by Suicide

Language Matters: Committed Suicide vs. Completed Suicide vs. Died by Suicide

Written by on September 21, 2017 in All Posts, Misc, Suicide, Terminology with 126 Comments

People in the suicide prevention field discourage the use of the term “committed suicide.” The verb “commit” (when followed by an act) is generally reserved for actions that many people view as sinful or immoral. Someone commits burglary, or murder, or rape, or perjury, or adultery, or crime – or something else bad. Suicide itself […]

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Speaking of Suicide … Within Limits

Speaking of Suicide … Within Limits

I don’t want to encourage people to kill themselves. I also don’t want to give advice on ways to die by suicide, or to advertise the supposed virtues of suicide. Can you blame me? Some people do blame me. Hundreds of people have submitted to this website comments that could be construed as pro-suicide. And […]

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“If You Take Meds for Mental Illness, Do Not Feel Ashamed or Weak”

“If You Take Meds for Mental Illness, Do Not Feel Ashamed or Weak”

If you take psychiatric medications – or want to – these words written by a dear friend of mine, MaryElizabeth, might help you: I feel compelled to say this. If you take meds for mental illness to help you stay alive, or just as importantly, to move from surviving to thriving, do not feel ashamed or weak. […]

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Why I Came Out of the (Suicide) Closet

Why I Came Out of the (Suicide) Closet

What will people think of you? What will people say about you? Some people asked me these questions when I told them I was publishing an essay in the New York Times (“A Suicide Therapist’s Secret Past”) about a very dark time in my life when I made a suicide attempt. I can’t really blame them. […]

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Can “13 Reasons Why” Really Trigger Suicides?

Can “13 Reasons Why” Really Trigger Suicides?

I don’t really want to read one more thing about suicide in 13 Reasons Why, let alone add to the mix. But I think it’s necessary. Many articles and essays I read about the show are based on emotion, without acknowledging the very well-researched phenomenon of suicide contagion. The more that people understand the facts about […]

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When a Suicide Prevention Hero Dies by Suicide

When a Suicide Prevention Hero Dies by Suicide

Untold thousands, maybe even millions, of people embraced Amy Bleuel’s symbol of passionate resistance against suicide: a simple semicolon. Tattoos, jewelry, and art feature the period floating above a comma, not for punctuation, but for an expression of hope.  That delicate punctuation mark, Amy would tell people, meant that the writer still had more to say. […]

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Is It Selfish to Die in a Tornado?

Is It Selfish to Die in a Tornado?

Written by on October 28, 2015 in All Posts, Misc, Stigma with 34 Comments

People who die in tornadoes are so selfish. They have people who love them, people who will be hurt terribly if they die. Yet they die anyway. People who die in tornadoes are thinking only of themselves. They take the easy way out when they refuse to overcome the storm. They don’t care that their […]

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