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Suicide attempt survivor, Eduardo Vega, talks about suicide awareness and his own experiences.


Suicide prevention is not just about stopping somebody from taking action to kill themselves. Preventing suicide is about helping people live through very difficult times, and getting through to the other side without taking that action.

Talking About Suicide With People Who’ve Been There: Eduardo Vega, Mental Health Advocate

People who have lived experience can connect with others in ways that maybe not everybody else can. When I was going through the hardest times of my life, the things that I really needed is people saying, “I’ve been there, I know what it feels like, I know what it feels like to want to die, to have thoughts of wanting to kill yourself, and I know that you’ll get through this, and you’ll get through it, not only to survive it, but you might come out the other side with a lot to give.”

The experience of suicide is a human experience It doesn’t separate us and if affects millions of people every year. Those are difficult times, and we can all support each other to get through those by being more understanding and by helping connect with each other in a range of ways.

So many people go through these really dark times and there is such a wealth of hope out there, and strength, too. When you’ve been through it, you have an opportunity, to turn around and share that experience with others.

The common wisdom has been that if when people are in really dark times or desperate times that they can only receive help and I think this is a big problem. So what I would say to somebody who’s going through a really tough time now, if you can hold on, and learn as you go through it, and connect with others. You have meaningful relationships with in your life and a meaningful place in the world. Remembering that and finding and connecting to that, sometimes every day, sometimes every minute, can make a big difference.

Originally published: September 14, 2018
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