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The Suicide Awareness Project

My nephew and his friend Alaina asked me to post this for them. They are working on a school project about something that, in Alaina’s words, “a lot of people don’t like to talk about very much because it’s a harsh topic. So we figured why not us, since we’re passionate about bringing awareness to it.”

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Hi.

I’m Alaina.
Alaina

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 And I’m Peyton.

Peyton 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’ve been working on a project together; we want to spread awareness about a serious problem.

We feel that this problem is something that gets over-looked by many as an unimportant, non-serious issue. There is no enthusiasm about suicide prevention or awareness of the symptoms. We definitely don’t hear about it at school. And the fact that we never hear about it proves to us that suicide is one of the lesser things that the school system cares about.

But suicide affects many people in so many different ways.

Last year, we came up with a plan; we wanted to host a walk to support suicide awareness. But unfortunately that didn’t work out. Although a couple of the adults in our school supported us wholeheartedly, it only took one person’s lack of support to make the whole project fall apart.

We emailed her, called her, wrote her letters…  It supported how we feel about it, that no one cared. Or at least that people at the school don’t care. And that’s what we were trying to do, to get our school – and not just our school, but others in the community – to realize that this actually does happen. That person not responding was a slap in our face that made it seem like it was true, that nobody did care.

We both personally know many people who have been and continue to be changed by the effects of suicide or attempted suicide. Suicide is a real problem that needs more attention.

Recently one of our own friends tried to commit suicide. He over-dosed on pills, but thankfully he survived because his mother found him in time. We were told that she found him at the last possible moment he could have received help to stay alive.

It was a terrible experience for him to go through, but also for his family and friends. It was a horrible thing to have to watch him go through that without being able to help him.

We feel like people don’t realize the true effects of suicide until it happens to them. It affects much more than what it seems to on the surface. Suicide is bigger than one person. For every person that commits suicide, there are on average six people who are affected deeply by that suicide. All of that person’s family, all of his relatives, all of his friends that cared and loved him are now left with this.

And we’re positive each and every one of them feels that they could have done something.

We need help spreading the word. Talk about it more, don’t let it be such a shy subject.

Mentor someone. Learn what to look for and how to respond to cries for help.

Share this post. Spread the word.

Alaina and Peyton were also my guests on the podcast, talking about their suicide awareness project, why they took it on, what it means to them, and why they care so much. You can listen to that here.

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9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Ricky Anderson #

    Good for you two!

    Looking forward to hearing the podcast. I’m a survivor myself.

    I’ve never actually said that publicly before, but since the point is to raise awareness…

    June 5, 2014
    • Peyton and Alaina #

      Thanks for your support and we really appreciate you taking the time to read this! -Alaina and Peyton

      June 5, 2014
    • Wow, thanks Ricky. Two beautiful gifts: you sharing that with us and you being here to share it. I’m so happy you are here.

      June 5, 2014
  2. If all our future leaders would be so caring and so pro-active, the world’s future would look a lot brighter! Keep up the good work.

    June 5, 2014
    • Hi Patti, that’s very nice of you to say. Peyton and Alaina tried to say so themselves a few times, but it kept disappearing. But they wanted you to know how much they appreciated your comment!

      June 9, 2014
  3. Thank you for your awareness project! I lost my son to suicide when he was 16 and my life will never be the same again. I admire your ability and willingness to talk about suicide. It is so important.

    June 6, 2014
    • Peyton #

      I’m sorry for what happened to your son. It should never have to be like that, I wish and hope for one day there will be better research and better help for people who need it. And hopefully someday we can understand about it so we can prevent things like this from happening. Thank you, hypchick2.

      June 6, 2014
  4. I lost my brother to suicide last September, and thus I realize that it is such a beautiful thing when people are willing to talk about this issue that is unfortunately so often swept under the rug. Keep up the honesty and passion. Sending you positive vibes.

    June 6, 2014
    • Hi Lauren, that’s very sad to hear. I agree with you, Peyton and Alaina. It’s a hard topic to bring up, or really to know how to talk to someone who’s lost a loved one that way. We don’t know what’s okay to say or ask, and that I think leads to a lot of the sweeping under the rug as you say. Also, I do think there is an aspect of this kind of loss that many people still feel the need to keep private. But I think you have to shout about it and make people listen and understand if you ever hope to save someone else from suicide.

      Thank you so much for commenting and the positive vibes. The kids tried to respond a couple of times, but it kept disappearing for some reason. But they wanted me to tell you thank you very much!

      June 9, 2014

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