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Suicide rates rise sharply
Old 07-12-2013, 04:40 PM   #1
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Suicide rates rise sharply

Thought I'd cheer you up.

Suicide rates are up. Quite a bit. Among men in their 50's, suicide rates have risen 50%.

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From 1999 to 2010, the suicide rate among Americans ages 35 to 64 rose by nearly 30 percent. [...]

The most pronounced increases were seen among men in their 50s, a group in which suicide rates jumped by nearly 50 percent.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/03/he...n-us.html?_r=0


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Among women, suicide rates increased with age, and the largest percentage increase in suicide rate was observed among those aged 60–64 years, a 59.7 percent increase for this group of women.
http://www.alternet.org/economy/what...economy-likely


Suicides are more common than homicides or car fatalities. And those are just the reported ones (suicide is vastly under-reported).

The causes? Various speculations, but the economy seems to figure prominently -- long-term unemployment, sense that you aren't able to contribute meaningfully, feeling like a burden, plus hopelessness about things changing. Other factors may include the dramatic increase in prescription opiate use and the disconnection created by our relationships becoming increasingly electronic.
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Old 07-13-2013, 04:29 AM   #2
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... and the disconnection created by our relationships becoming increasingly electronic.
That last cause was not mentioned anywhere in the article. The article mentions social isolation. Having electronic relationships isn't social isolation: Social isolation is the absence of such relationships, the absence of communications with others, etc. The research showed no causal link between relationships being electronic and the consequences social isolation.
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Old 07-13-2013, 07:50 AM   #3
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I know. That cause came from a discussion I had with an expert on suicide yesterday.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:09 AM   #4
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The best way to sway yourself away from suicide? Do something nice for someone....you'll feel good about yourself. Try serving at a soup kitchen, deliver food to shutins, anything where you serve others.

To do some of this, however, you have to have your health......if you do, you are amognst the luckiest people in the world. If not, that's another story.

My family and I serve at least once a month at a soup kitchen. I learned this from my wife's family who are always on call to help an ill friend mend. And, they work at their church and a homeless shelter.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:16 AM   #5
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Good idea. A lot of people who kill themselves feel as if they have nothing meaningful to contribute, and acts of charity might help to alleviate that. Plus, it gets you out of your head, breaks up that ruminative worry that people get into, and gets you focused on someone else.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:16 AM   #6
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I think a lot of people look for ways to draw spurious ties between negative things and things they don't like. I don't believe such claims without iron-clad normalized research behind it.

Jerome raises an interesting issue, though: I am surprised that health wasn't mentioned as something that has become a newly-stronger factor in suicides.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:26 AM   #7
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The best way to sway yourself away from suicide? Do something nice for someone....you'll feel good about yourself. Try serving at a soup kitchen, deliver food to shutins, anything where you serve others.
People with clinical depression cannot "do something nice for someone else" and make it go away anymore than someone with cancer can. This fundamental lack of understanding about mental health issues is one of the primary reasons people do feel so isolated and commit suicide.

Depression is not a choice. People who have never really been in despair rarely understand those who are.
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:15 AM   #8
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People with clinical depression cannot "do something nice for someone else" and make it go away anymore than someone with cancer can. This fundamental lack of understanding about mental health issues is one of the primary reasons people do feel so isolated and commit suicide.

Depression is not a choice. People who have never really been in despair rarely understand those who are.
Yeah, it can be very difficult to understand the depths of suffering and immobility that people with severe depression have. And I agree, you can't make depression "go away" by an act of charity.

At the same time, though, I don't think his suggestion is worthless. One of the common treatments for depression (in combo w/meds, usually) is "behavioral activation," which (to simplify) involves getting the person to do things that might provide pleasure or a sense of accomplishment. Many of those things involve contact with other people. Charity work might be one of those activities, depending on the person and their value system. Not as a single event/activity, of course, but as part of an overall treatment plan.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:14 AM   #9
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People with clinical depression cannot "do something nice for someone else" and make it go away anymore than someone with cancer can. This fundamental lack of understanding about mental health issues is one of the primary reasons people do feel so isolated and commit suicide.

Depression is not a choice. People who have never really been in despair rarely understand those who are.
Clinical depression is a serious health issue. I'm not suggesting that performing charitable acts will cure clinical depression. Performing charitable acts decreases isolation, gives a person social interaction and is just one of many options to individuals that feel alone and isolated.
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Old 07-13-2013, 10:50 AM   #10
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Thought I'd cheer you up.

Suicide rates are up. Quite a bit. Among men in their 50's, suicide rates have risen 50%. [...] Suicides are more common than homicides or car fatalities. And those are just the reported ones (suicide is vastly under-reported).
It is only natural to think about possible causes. I have always wondered if this might not happen at some point, with so many approaching retirement age who are not financially (or emotionally) prepared for retirement, for whatever reasons.

Also, as we grow older we find that those we have loved and cared about in our lives start passing away, and I would speculate that this might inspire at least some of the suicides too.

And then some have serious health issues which I would imagine might push one to think about this "ultimate solution".

Whatever the reasons, so tragic.
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Old 07-13-2013, 12:50 PM   #11
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It is sad, that's for sure.

Btw, to anyone reading: if you have someone in your life who you're worried about -- maybe someone who has been long-term unemployed, who seems isolated, a veteran maybe -- please check in on them and let them know you care. That can help.

I have a friend who has been unemployed for the last 3 or 4 years and also suffers from chronic pain. After hearing this stat, I wrote him, asking how he was doing and letting him know I was in his corner. I would've done it in person, but he lives several states away.

Over a hundred people kill themselves every day in the US, and that's just the ones we know about.

A really nice woman I knew a few streets away did it two years ago. It really saddened me. She was a real sweetheart. I remember how she took a mistrustful, raggedy, abandoned dog in and transformed him into a beautiful, tail-wagging, happy and trusting little guy. Unfortunately, she was also involved in an abusive relationship, and one night, she was so miserable, she put a shotgun in her mouth. ... You just never know.

Never hurts to ask, btw, if you're wondering whether someone is thinking about killing themselves. It may help. There's a myth that asking about it will somehow make it more likely. It doesn't.

Thanks for the responses, folks. At first I thought the thread would be greeted by the sound of crickets...
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Old 07-13-2013, 01:45 PM   #12
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A really nice woman I knew a few streets away did it two years ago. It really saddened me. She was a real sweetheart. I remember how she took a mistrustful, raggedy, abandoned dog in and transformed him into a beautiful, tail-wagging, happy and trusting little guy. Unfortunately, she was also involved in an abusive relationship, and one night, she was so miserable, she put a shotgun in her mouth. ... You just never know.
As always, cherchez l'homme.

Ha
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Old 07-13-2013, 07:58 PM   #13
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He was a very friendly guy, a bit overly friendly, which made me want to take a step back, but I never suspected abuse. It's surprising what people are like behind closed doors. It was only after the suicide that I learned about the abuse. I also learned she had a drinking problem. She was drinking the night it happened. He blamed her suicide on that, naturally.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:27 PM   #14
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http://www.worldlifeexpectancy.com/c...de/by-country/

It's not one world
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:38 PM   #15
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Thanks for posting this toolman. The entire site is extremely interesting.

Ha
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Old 07-14-2013, 10:47 AM   #16
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As always, cherchez l'homme.

Ha
Nice twist on the original.


Second the the Thanks to Toolman for the link.

The 40 million lonely Chincese men are surely in trouble as are the same male child preferences in India.
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Old 07-14-2013, 11:46 AM   #17
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Another thing that struck me looking through the various displays and rankings is that US residents who get a large heaping of abuse for being fat, diabetic, sickly, suicidal and murderous messes look pretty good overall.

Ha
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Old 07-14-2013, 01:31 PM   #18
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Getting laid off from a job in your fifties and burning through your retirement to pay your bills and keep your house out of foreclosure. Not availing yourself of medical care because you can't afford it. Sounds like a recipe for depression to me.
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Old 07-27-2013, 08:50 PM   #19
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From today's Irish Times...a link to a superb documentary about the culture of suicide in Japan. It's worth the 52 minutes. Japan can be a very lonely place.

How tragedy led an Irish man to tackle Japan

Website: http://www.saving10000.com
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Old 08-03-2013, 06:01 PM   #20
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Drinking several cups of coffee daily appears to reduce the risk of suicide in men and women by about 50 percent.

Coffee drinking tied to lower risk of suicide | Harvard Gazette
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