Link – U of T experts explain difficulties of reporting on suicide – and why it’s important to focus on resilience
Most of us probably don’t consider ourselves “the media”, and we certainly don’t reach nearly as many people, but with the rise of social media, blogs, podcasts, etc. there are many, many of us who are a voice that others listen to. Given that, it would benefit all of us to understand the correct ways to avoid spreading a negative message.
““The key point is that everything is contagious,” Sinyor said. “We all do something called social learning – we learn from each other. If the media – unintentionally but erroneously – suggests that suicide is the only option or a common outcome, then people take that on and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
“However, if we disseminate stories of resilience, which are by far the most common outcome in mental health, then people will copy that.””
It’s good to know that resilience in dealing with mental health struggles is the most common outcome. I see that resilience in my online feeds all the time, and try to share that. I also have probably not been as careful talking about suicide as I should have been over the years, but I am learning. The studies on suicide contagion are clear, and the numbers should push us to be more careful. You can see them spelled out in the post below. Go read the whole thing.