Focusing on Healing and Resilience in the Wake of Florida’s Recent Events
National Suicide Prevention Week is a crucial annual event dedicated to raising awareness about suicide prevention and supporting those who may be struggling with thoughts of suicide. This year, our focus is on understanding how recent events in Florida have had a significant impact on the mental health and well-being of its residents.
We want to emphasize that feeling suicidal does not make someone weak, broken, or out of their mind; it is a sign that they are facing overwhelming pain. This pain can be triggered by various factors, including traumatic events, and it is our collective responsibility to provide support and resources to those in need.
Florida, like many other places, has witnessed its fair share of challenges in recent times. Natural disasters, economic downturns, and the ongoing pandemic have left many residents feeling anxious, isolated, and hopeless. The state has also faced its unique set of challenges pertaining to access to care that have contributed to the emotional burden carried by its citizens.
In such trying times, it is important to recognize that mental health struggles can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender, or background. Suicidal thoughts and feelings are often a response to the cumulative stress and despair that these events can create. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), suicide remains a pressing issue in the United States. In 2020, there were 45,979 suicide deaths, equating to one life lost every 11 minutes*.
Steps to Support and Heal
During National Suicide Prevention Week, and throughout the year, it is crucial to remind ourselves of the steps we can take to support those in need:
- Promise not to do anything immediately:
If you or someone you know is in distress, take a step back and promise not to take any immediate action. Time can provide perspective, and it’s important to create space between thoughts and actions.
- Avoid Drugs and Alcohol:
Substance abuse can intensify suicidal thoughts and feelings. It is essential to avoid drugs and alcohol when coping with emotional distress.
- Seek Help and Open Up:
Do not keep your feelings to yourself. Reach out to someone you trust—a friend, family member, or neighbor—and let them know how you’re feeling. Talking about your struggles can be the first step towards healing.
- Professional Assistance:
It takes immense courage to confront emotional pain. Seeking help from mental health professionals is a crucial step in the recovery process. Reach out to organizations like Care Resource at 305-576-1234 (extension #315) to make an appointment with a licensed clinician.
- National Helplines:
For immediate assistance, call or text the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 or the National Hopeline Network at 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433). These services are available 24/7 to provide support and guidance.
About Care Resource:
Care Resource is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization and a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) with four locations in Midtown Miami, Little Havana, Miami Beach, and Fort Lauderdale. The health center provides comprehensive health and support services to address the full healthcare needs of South Florida’s pediatric, adolescent, and adult populations.
*Suicide and Occupation, (2022, Nobember 8) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.