Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

The Myth of Holiday Suicide Rates

My fellow Beliefnet blogger David Gibson has written an interesting post on the “myth” of holiday suicide rates based on a story by Jim Nichols of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer:

Researchers have consistently debunked the old saw for at least 20 years. In fact, statistics from the National Center for Health Statistics show that nationally December has the lowest suicide rate of any month of the year. In Cuyahoga County over the last 10 years, suicides are far more common in May than in November or December, two months that sit smack in the middle of the pack in terms of suicide prevalence.

David’s post is worth reading. You can find it by clicking here.

  • Br. Gabriel

    Therese, I have dealt with Chronic Pain for 20yrs now. I’ve also had to deal with Severe Depression, to go with it. I’m a Bendictine Monk in a Monastery. I have done some off the wall decisions here and made numerous mistakes. With all of this, there have been times that I have consider suicide. Especially last week. I just can’t endure my pain much longer. I know that suicide is wrong. It seems I’m always nervous of making a mistake. My life has been a very painful one. I’am glad that I did come across your web-site. I have kept you in prayer and pray that you are doing well. Thank you for what you do for others. Peace and God bless. Br. Gabriel.

  • Julie

    Dear Br. Gabriel,
    My thoughts and prayers are with you. I totally understand the pain you are experiencing. It is quite common to suffer from depression when you are afflicted with chronic pain. The mere fact that severe pain interferes with sleep, awareness, mental functions, physical abilities, etc. make it easy to understand why we become depressed. Please try to find a pain clinic (the one I have gone to requires you to talk with a mental health professional before you receive treatment) as there are all kinds of treatment available other than pain medication. I have suffered with chronic pain for 18+ years and clinical depression for 25+ years and at times feel so much older than my 51 years. I am a single mother to a wonderful 17 year old son and that is what keeps me going and actually feeling young. I wish I had an answer for you. You will be in my prayers and I hope 2009 will be your year!

  • Your Name

    Dear Br. Gabriel,
    I have wanted to join a monastery for some time. It is chronic pain that prevents me and I am getting beyond the age limit now.
    I have been on medications as it was less expensive and I had bad insurance until put on medicare and disability. I think about suicide all the time. I so want to reclaim the peace and communion I had once with God, but it is so difficult now.
    I asked my doctor to change my medications 3 weeks ago, as I am planning to fly to meet with a vocational director at a Benedictine monastery. The medication I was on made me very sleepy and I felt ashamed and did not want to have to tell the Sisters I was on pain medication that was so strong.
    The past 3 weeks I have been in so much pain I do not know if I can make it. I have been bedridden for 3 weeks. How am I going to be with the Sisters and pray and even walk?
    If I cancel, i know I will never be a Sister and I have no desire to have a relationship. I just want to spend my life with God now. I have suffered too much and I think if I don’t make it on the plane, I will commit suicide.
    I feel so useless.
    I don’t know how you manage as a monastic. The hours and activities of prayer and work require concentration. I think you are a saint to continue on that path.
    Do monasteries even allow people to be on pain management? (Medication is the least expensive. There are other methods, such as injections but they are very expensive and I doubt a monastery could take on teh burden of a few thousand a month, rather than the 50$ or so for medication.)
    I am too embarrassed to ask a Sister. I am so ashamed that I have pain. I pray hours and cry and hate that I’m stuck in self-pity.
    I will keep you in my prayers too.

  • natural health products

    What is the difference why December has the lowest suicide rate of any month of the year? There are more reasons behind that. We will be praying that suicidal rate will lessen.

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