More than 800,000 lives are lost due to suicide every year. While those who commit suicide leave the world behind, their loved ones are the people who have to bear the loss of losing someone so dear to them. To honor the loss of those who have lost a loved one to suicide, International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day is celebrated every year. This year, the event falls on Saturday, November 20.
Why Are They Called Survivors?
If you are wondering why these people are called survivors, then that is because losing someone close to you to suicide is a challenging time. One can constantly question whether there were warning signs that they missed, or if there was anything they could have done to prevent such a circumstance.
Losing a sibling, friend, lover, parent, or even a coworker to suicide can be a traumatic experience, which is why all of the people who survive such a trying time are known as ‘survivors.’ These survivors often come together to provide empathy to each other, since only they can understand the true feeling of loss. In this way, survivors are able to offer strength to one another to cope with the loss.
What is Survivor’s Day For?
International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day is a day that is dedicated to those who have lost a loved one to suicide. All of these survivors can come together and connect on this day in order to form connections, friendships, and offer a helping hand to each other. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention calls this day “Survivor Day” and encourages people in local communities to come together and find comfort in grieving loss together.
Many online webinars and events are also arranged on Survivors Day in order to spread awareness regarding suicide prevention as well as coping with the loss of losing someone to suicide. People who actively participate in Survivors Day report that they are able to find solace in knowing that they are not experiencing this trauma alone – that others, too, are affected by the same loss.
What Does Survivor’s Day Offer?
On survivor’s day, people are encouraged to come forward with stories of their loved ones. They find peace sharing little bits and pieces of their loved ones with a crowd that appreciates their existence in the world. More solace is found knowing that survivors and those who left the world too soon were of all ages, ethnicities, socioeconomic classes, and religious backgrounds. What we learn from such days is that mental health does not discriminate. Instead, issues such as depression and anxiety can be faced by anyone – regardless of where they belong.
Survivor’s day also offers a sense of gratitude to survivors for continuing to live their lives with passion. Although losing a loved one to suicide is traumatic, they were strong enough to move past this trauma and continue to lead remarkable lives themselves. They are surrounded by the hope that such mental health awareness days will be able to prevent more suicides in the future, and that more lives can be saved before they are lost to suicide.
The Importance of Mental Health
While it is obvious that anyone who committed suicide was suffering with their own mental health, their loved ones could go down the same spiral after hearing the news of suicide. To prevent such situations, it is recommended for survivors to seek professional assistance regarding their mental health. Solutions such as grief counseling and suicide loss support groups tend to offer a great deal of help to these survivors.