Talking About Suicide

Because it's not a taboo

Reading about Jacquielynn Floyd

A quick note to point out this piece by Dallas Morning News columnist Jacquielynn Floyd, who writes openly about her two suicide attempts as a teenager and her depression at the time:

It was not caused by tragedy or by bad parenting or by a teenage craving for romantic drama. It was a sickness, a leaden joylessness tainted by a self-loathing so acute that I sometimes walked around in a state of inexplicable shame. I felt that failure was written on me with an indelible stamp.

Objectively, there is no shame in suffering from the same disorder that plagued Lincoln and Churchill, among many others. To the sufferer, however, it is cruelly isolating.

She assures her readers that it can be treated, and that loved ones left behind by suicide shouldn’t make the mistake of assuming guilt or blame. And she ends, “It’s a life I cherish. I can hardly bear to think that I might have missed it.”

For more on journalism and suicide, the Dart Center for Journalism & Trauma offers resources for those reporting on suicide. It’s interesting, though, that the center appears to offer nothing online for journalists who struggle with it themselves.

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