September is Suicide Prevention Month, and in the spirit of breaking through the stigma and discrimination that keeps so many of us from reaching out for help, I’d like to tell you about my sweet nephew, Robert, and the impact his suicide had on our family.
In July, the 988 the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline went live nationwide. This critical number will make mental health and crisis support much more accessible to anyone who needs it.
Too often a lack of resources and social stigma leaves people who need mental health support without help. As a consequence, we have seen an “ineffective and deadly” response to people experiencing mental health crises. The 988 crisis line is an opportunity to reimagine mental health and substance use disorder crisis response to give people the help they need. Through one easy-to-remember phone number, 988 will ensure that anyone experiencing a mental health crisis receives the care they deserve.
On this Father’s Day, I’d like to ask something of dads out there. I realize Father’s Day is when dads are supposed to receive, rather than give. But I’m asking you to give yourself something. Because it’s critical. Give yourself a break.