University of Washington
Need help now?  Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255
Need Help Now? Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. 1.800.273.8255
News and Views Forefront Insight Blog Personal & professional perspectives on news and policy related to mental health and suicide prevention
Sep 06, 2017

“Let’s go see the sunrise! Let’s go see the sunrise!” yelled 10-year-old Caleb. We were in the rural town of Viñales in western Cuba. It was pitch-dark at 6:30 am and Caleb, Caleb’s cousin Jose, our host Juan, my wife Hyejung and I were headed to the hills to see the sunrise. After walking through fields and up hills for about 15 minutes, we reached our vantage point. Although we still had about 15 minutes until the sunrise, our surroundings were quickly being illuminated. Roosters were crowing loudly. Caleb looked at the massive rock formations to our left and said, “They look like an...

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Aug 10, 2017

Generally, all suicide prevention advocates want to normalize the subject of suicide so that people who are feeling suicidal or have lost a loved one to suicide feel safe talking about it with others. Mass media and entertainment (like television shows and movies) can be conversation starters, with one exception: Suicide prevention organizations want the media to address the topic of suicide in a way that promotes suicide prevention. This is why so many suicide prevention organizations have a problem with Netflix’s show 13 Reasons Why.

Although the show was...

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Jul 20, 2017

We just heard the devastating news that Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington took his own life today. A father of six and an immensely talented musician, Chester’s suicide is a blow to millions - including suicide prevention advocates who are also music aficionados (and vice versa).

Chester Bennington, Linkin Park frontman

As the world reacts, here are a few talking points the public should know:

- Chester died by...

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Jul 13, 2017

We all empathize with our friends and family, when they are going through a rough time. All we want to do is help take their pain away—and there are a variety of paths we can take to help them with that pain. For loved ones struggling with their mental health, there are also multiple ways to try and alleviate that pain, but suicide should never be one that is encouraged because no matter how bad life can seem, there are always better routes to take. 

About three weeks ago, Michelle Carter was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in a widely publicized trial known as the “...

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Jun 30, 2017

The city of Pittsburgh lies at the confluence of three major rivers, but, as you might expect, the number of bridges is far higher.  

Those many bridges and the waters below often tempt those who consider ending their life's pain and depression. It's what my only brother did in the Allegheny River 12 years ago. But a miracle of timing and caring happened this week on the old Sixth Street Bridge above that same river: a bridge connecting downtown...

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