Support and Hope: Suicide Prevention Day 2023

Published on 8 Sep 2023

Every year, on 10 September, the world comes together to observe Suicide Prevention Day. This day serves as a reminder of the importance of mental health; the struggles individuals may face; and the actions that can be taken to save lives. As a clinical negligence solicitor and part-time assistant coroner, I understand and witness first-hand the profound impact mental health crises can have on a person's life, and it is important to emphasise the critical role we all play in preventing suicide.

The Stark Reality

Suicide is a global issue that affects people of all ages, backgrounds, and walks of life. In many cases, it's the result of a complex interplay of mental health challenges, personal circumstances, and societal factors. It's crucial to recognise that suicide can be preventable, and every one of us can make a difference in someone's life.

The Power of Connection

One of the most potent tools in suicide prevention is human connection. Reach out to friends, family members, and colleagues who may be struggling. Sometimes, a simple conversation can provide the support someone desperately needs. Encourage open dialogue about mental health and reduce the stigma surrounding it.

Know the Warning Signs

Understanding the warning signs of suicide is vital. While these signs may vary from person to person, some common indicators include:

  1. Expressing a desire to die or feeling trapped;
  2. Withdrawing from social interactions and hobbies;
  3. Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live;
  4. Sudden changes in behaviour or mood;
  5. Giving away possessions or making final arrangements.

If you notice these signs in someone you know, don't hesitate to reach out and offer your support. You could be a lifeline for them.

Seek Professional Help

It is important to seek professional help when needed. Mental health issues should be treated with the same urgency and care as physical ailments. If you or someone you know is struggling, encourage them to seek help from mental health professionals. Many resources are available, including therapists, counsellors, and crisis hotlines.

Legal Considerations

In some cases, individuals who are struggling with their mental health may need legal assistance. If you believe that clinical negligence or medical malpractice has contributed to someone's mental health challenges, it's crucial to explore legal options. Holding medical professionals accountable for their actions not only seeks justice but can also prevent similar incidents from happening to others.

Community Support

Suicide prevention is not just an individual responsibility – it is a community effort. Get involved in local mental health initiatives and organisations that aim to raise awareness and provide support. By working together, we can create a society that is more compassionate and understanding of mental health challenges.

Take Care of Yourself

Finally, remember that you can't help others effectively if you neglect your own mental health. Self-care is essential. Prioritise activities you enjoy doing. If you find yourself overwhelmed, don't hesitate to seek help from friends or family, or support from a therapist or counsellor.


We can all make a positive impact on the lives of those around us. By fostering open communication, reducing stigma, and providing support, we can help prevent suicide and create a world where everyone has the opportunity to live a fulfilling life.

Remember: you are not alone, and there is hope. It is often darkest just before the dawn.

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