More adolescents than ever are struggling with their mental health. While not a shock, this reality comes with concerns: How do we help adolescents? How do we fix mental health issues? Where do we target adolescents who need the help? The Boston Herald’s Kathleen McKiernan investigates the answers that we as a community so desperately need in Special Report: Schools face surge in suicide attempts.
This morning, I submitted a testimony before the House Health Care and Wellness Committee, which is considering several pieces of legislation related to substance abuse prevention and treatment. My testimony was in support of House Bill 1047, a drug take-back program to protect public health through safe storage and disposal of medications:
Three recent encounters left me musing about the importance of empathy and emotional well-being in the lives of those we love and touch.
When a tragic event happens and it ends with someone dying, especially when that person takes their own life, people naturally look for someone to blame. This could not be truer than with suicide. Suicide can be really confusing for people to understand—so the easiest out is often to blame the person they think is responsible. So when a person dies by suicide, and that person was also bullied—the person who often gets blamed for their suicide is the bully.
When a loved one dies from suicide, you never stop wondering what really happened. You spend countless hours considering what pushed him or her over the edge. You try to figure out if there was anything else you could have done. You research, you ponder and often you torture yourself trying to find an answer, even though you’ll never know if you’ve found it.
Imagine a young man. He’s in his early 20s. He had a good childhood with supportive parents and is attending an elite university. His grades are excellent. He has friends and a long-term girlfriend. He’s never struggled with depression or been addicted to drugs. His future is bright.