The arrival of September brings National Suicide Prevention and Recovery Month — an occasion to raise awareness and openly address this stigmatized subject. Here at FYI+, our aim is to ensure that individuals, along with their friends and families, can readily access the necessary resources for engaging in conversations about suicide prevention and seeking the support they deserve. As this blog will demonstrate, suicide and substance use are commonly experienced together.
Suicidal thoughts, much like mental health conditions, can touch the lives of anyone, irrespective of age, gender, or background. In reality, suicide frequently emerges from untreated mental health challenges. While such thoughts might be prevalent, it’s essential to understand that they shouldn’t be considered an everyday experience, as they often signal deeper underlying issues.
At Families & Youth Innovations Plus (FYI+), we stand at the forefront of change by becoming a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC). This shift underscores our commitment to enhancing our ability to cater to individual needs, streamlining our processes, and bringing innovation into every aspect of our care. As we delve into the experiences of a participant, we will demonstrate how the services of FYI+ identify the needs of a single person and craft a unique course of treatment.
The Realities of Suicide Prevention and Substance Use Recovery
The reality of suicide is that it touches people from every walk of life. The following graphic depicts those most affected by suicide, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
This is why it is so important to get treatment and reach out for help. The relationship between suicide, addiction, and depression is intricate and closely intertwined. Over 90% of individuals who experience suicide are also grappling with depression, substance use disorders (SUD), or both. Depression and substance abuse often create a distressing cycle that tragically can culminate in suicide.
Those battling severe depression, stemming from conditions like Major Depression, Bipolar Disorder, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, sometimes resort to substances or risky behaviors as a temporary escape, which, despite offering brief relief, ultimately worsens depressive episodes, escalating the risk of suicidal ideation. The aftermath of addiction, damaging relationships, and judgment, further exacerbates the danger of suicide attempts.
For more information visit: https://www.addictioncenter.com/addiction/addiction-and-suicide/
It’s crucial to understand that every person grappling with this issue is unique, and the signals they exhibit can vary widely. Some individuals may display well-known warning signs over an extended period before succumbing to their thoughts, while others might mask their feelings outwardly. Rarely does any one person show the complete spectrum of signs, and many who do demonstrate signs may not actually attempt or experience suicide.
Here are some of the warning signs of Suicidal Ideation:
The Story of Mark: There Is Hope
Mark, facing the challenges of substance use and grappling with thoughts of suicidal ideation, reached out one night, dialing “988”, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. This lifeline led Mark to FYI+, a place where our mission is to accompany him on every step of his recovery journey. This is a crucial step for people who are looking for help. It is essential that suicidal ideation is addressed and worked on. Therapy has been a proven way to help with these struggles. Here are ways that Mark is able to receive behavioral healthcare through FYI+.
Outpatient Therapy: Guided by our comprehensive assessment, we unveiled the nuances of Mark’s needs and crafted a recovery blueprint aimed at enriching his life. Opening up, Mark revealed his difficulty in forging meaningful connections, leading him to a sense of isolation and hopelessness. In response, we linked him with an outpatient therapist, a counseling professional skilled in helping individuals navigate Substance Use Disorder (SUD).
Life Skills Classes Provided by Juntos: Recognizing his challenges in managing day-to-day responsibilities, we steered him towards our life skills class, a weekly Wednesday session at 7 PM at our Solano location provided by our Juntos team, where he could develop practical skills for daily living.
Community Connection through La Vida Project: We understand that healing encompasses more than clinical interactions, and we recognized Mark’s need for community. After dedicated months of engagement, it became clear that Mark was looking to create a sense of community. Responding to his desire, we guided him to our adult dance group, hosted at La Vida Project every Tuesday evening at 7 PM. In these rhythmic movements, Mark not only found self-expression but also a network of understanding peers.
Why is Continuous Help Important?
Continuous help plays a pivotal role in someone’s journey. Having a reliable presence can provide them with a lifeline, a source of comfort amid the chaos. You see, challenges often don’t come with a timeline, and recovery is rarely a straight path. That’s where continuity steps in.
When we consistently offer support, we’re telling those in need that they’re not alone. We’re showing them that their feelings matter and that we’re ready to stand by them no matter what. It’s about building trust and fostering a safe space where they can open up without fear of judgment.
Putting the US in PLUS
The transition to a CCBHC marks a new dawn for FYI+, amplifying our dedication to behavioral healthcare. Mark’s story is a testament to the power of innovation that’s woven into every aspect of our approach. Our integrated services, our commitment to the individual’s journey, and our unbreakable network of support enable us to stand firm as beacons of hope in the lives of those who need it most.
When dealing with the realities of suicide and preventative care, FYI+ offers not just services, but opportunities for healing, understanding, and transformation. As we recognize National Suicide Prevention and Recovery Month in September, let us remember that hope, innovative care, and compassion can be the guiding stars for those navigating through their darkest hours.
If you are in crisis, here are some resources for you. If you are in need of help immediately, please call 911.