HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Suicides Now More Common ...

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 02:06 AM

 

Suicides Now More Common than Automobile Accident Deaths

Oscar-winner, actor, comedian and all-round beloved individual Robin Williams died on Monday at age 63 in an apparent suicide. The outpouring of grief went beyond the norm for celebrity deaths—largely because Williams, who had spent stints in rehab for drug addiction, was a comic genius who transcended genre, generation and medium while managing to reach out to and delight almost everyone in some form, tackling tough issues along the way.

His low-brow goofing around as Mork kicked off a slapstick career involving mimicry and pantomime. He brought comic relief to the Vietnam War in Good Morning, Vietnam and to the heartbreak of divorce in Mrs. Doubtfire. He won an Oscar playing a therapist in Good Will Hunting and appealed to everyone’s inner literary idealist in Dead Poets Society. That last film, however, dealt with the unspeakable. In it, one of the main characters took his own life; 25 years later, so would the male lead.

Williams’ wife, Susan Schneider, said the following in her statement to the press:

“On behalf of Robin’s family, we are asking for privacy during our time of profound grief. As he is remembered, it is our hope the focus will not be on Robin’s death, but on the countless moments of joy and laughter he gave to millions.”


Part of the unfortunate truth, however, is that often the only time people will talk about suicide is when a major public figure takes his or her own life. And here’s one of the most startling facts of all: In America, you’re more likely to have your friends die at their own hands than in something as seemingly common as a car crash.

http://www.vocativ.com/culture/health-culture/robin-williams/


1: There's a graph at the link illustrating this, but my HTML skills are insufficient to copy and paste it here.

2: I wonder how many veterans have contributed to this increase?

19 replies, 3693 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 19 replies Author Time Post
Reply Suicides Now More Common than Automobile Accident Deaths (Original post)
LloydS of New London Aug 2014 OP
Skittles Aug 2014 #1
LloydS of New London Aug 2014 #14
MADem Aug 2014 #2
littlemissmartypants Aug 2014 #3
grahamhgreen Aug 2014 #4
Warpy Aug 2014 #6
LuvNewcastle Aug 2014 #7
magical thyme Aug 2014 #8
Warpy Aug 2014 #12
lonestarnot Aug 2014 #5
Blanks Aug 2014 #9
NM_Birder Aug 2014 #15
LloydS of New London Aug 2014 #16
Blanks Aug 2014 #18
Blanks Aug 2014 #17
alarimer Aug 2014 #10
jeff47 Aug 2014 #13
woo me with science Aug 2014 #11
mnhtnbb Aug 2014 #19

Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 02:12 AM

1. welcome to DU LloydS of New London

such a sad time

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Skittles (Reply #1)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 12:21 PM

14. Indeed

 

But I thank you for your welcome, Skittles. And just call me Lloyd.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink



Response to MADem (Reply #2)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 02:54 AM

3. Perspective. nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 03:20 AM

4. I wonder how much ssri's have contributed

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to grahamhgreen (Reply #4)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 04:55 AM

6. They used to hospitalize people getting antidepressants

because they were at enormously greater risk for suicide when the meds first started to kick in, giving them a little more energy but not yet lifting the depression.

In that way, perhaps SSRIs have contributed to the rise in suicides, but only because insurance companies are too cheap to protect their patients and tell them here are some pills, you're on your own and don't make a mess if you decide to go.

The main contributor is hopelessness due to the shitty economy created by a 40+ year war against labor combined with intolerable burdens placed on our military over the last decade and a half.

Another factor is a sharp decrease in driving. Kids without jobs lined up aren't looking for cars and people who have them can no longer afford a Sunday joyride thanks to low wages and high fuel prices.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Warpy (Reply #6)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 05:16 AM

7. I was thinking that it must be the economy and the general state of the country.

This country has been purposely, systematically run off the rails by the people in charge and many people don't have any hope that things will ever get better. How can they get better when the people in charge are determined to make things even worse? It's enough to drive anyone hopelessly mad.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LuvNewcastle (Reply #7)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 08:29 AM

8. the closest I came was a couple years ago, when I realized that I'd been

 

systematically defrauded out of everything I'd worked and saved for, including by the government, and that I was no longer going to be able to provide for my fur and feather family. I was too exhausted to go on much longer, had no way through, and simply was done.

My plans were in place and I had found an avian sanctuary within driving distance, had contacted my pony's breeder and was looking for somebody for my pups when a former DUer pointed me to a temporary solution that has bought me the time to potentially find a way to have a decent retirement with my family intact.

Otherwise I would be one of the statistics.

And yes, the economy is a major factor. But it's more than just the economy because recessions are part of the natural cycle. It's the massive corruption behind the collapse, the systematic and institutionalized fraud, recognizing that everything was a set-up for robbery and that at my age there would be no chance to recover this time, and that I would lose my little family as a result. I could take the loss of everything else, but not them. And I couldn't bear to live to see what would become of them.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LuvNewcastle (Reply #7)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 10:57 AM

12. I see there is a post about Williams being in financial trouble

Uh, when you're that depressed, a notice that you forgot to pay the light bill will send you completely off the rails. It doesn't take much, at all.

A lot of people are getting those notices and have no way out except their friendly local legalized loan shark who is delighted to make their lives even worse.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 03:23 AM

5. Truly disconcerting stats.

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 09:02 AM

9. Here's the graphic.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Blanks (Reply #9)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 12:26 PM

15. don't understand. is that 12, 1200 12,000 suicides ?

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NM_Birder (Reply #15)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 12:33 PM

16. The graph posted here is tipped

 

You can view it right-side-up here.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Reply #16)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 05:35 PM

18. That's odd. It displays ok on my iPhone. eom

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to NM_Birder (Reply #15)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 05:34 PM

17. From the link.

The rates shown are fatalities per 100,000 of the population. Data comes from the CDC.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 09:56 AM

10. Cars are a lot safer these days and our health care system is lousy at mental illness.

That's my takeaway.

But what does matter is the fact that our health care system chews people up and spits them out.

As someone who has sought help for issues that were overwhelming to me, I first used my employer's EAP. I got three visits free to a counselor. She was a clinical social worker, I believe. After my insurance kicked in, I paid a $30 co-pay each time and was limited to a certain number of visits (6 I believe, but I don't think I used them all).

Now this was adequate because I did not have any serious issues, just some difficulty coping with changes at work (changes I was, I think, justifiably upset about). I can only guess (and I have heard stories) that for more serious issues, even if you have good insurance (which not everybody does), it's almost impossible to get adequate care. It's expensive and there's a whole lot of stigma still attached to seeking help. I never told my employer about my issues. And I never will, unless it interferes with my job.

I don't know how to address the stigma issue. We are a culture that's all about "sucking it up" and "pulling yourself up by your bootstraps" so it's difficult for anyone to admit they have a problem. We live in a country where simply taking a few days off from work is frowned upon by most employers. You may well lose your job if you don't answer emails while on vacation.
So taking time to deal with anything else is usually a non-starter.

And we have no social safety net to speak of, so we have to hold on to our jobs, even if it costs us mentally to so. We keep jobs that are so stressful we can't sleep at night or we drink to excess just to forget the assholes we work with, only to have to go back and deal with them the next day. We can't quit until we find something else and we can't find something else because we are too old, or don't have up to date skills or whatever.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to alarimer (Reply #10)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 11:12 AM

13. Yep - cars are a hell of a lot better at protecting people than they used to be.

I can only guess (and I have heard stories) that for more serious issues, even if you have good insurance (which not everybody does), it's almost impossible to get adequate care. It's expensive and there's a whole lot of stigma still attached to seeking help.

Back in the day, "Good" insurance got you one visit a week with someone who didn't have an "MD" or similar advanced degree. Getting on medication usually required that person convincing your primary care doctor to write the prescription, or paying extra to see the psychiatrist who supervised your usual therapist. Often it was necessary to negotiate a deal to try and make it affordable after you exhausted the insurance.

One of the major improvements from the ACA is that is no longer the case. Insurance companies were required to get a lot better in their mental health coverage.

That starts us down the road of mental health care just being health care. But it's going to take quite a while to get to the end of that road. Probably require at least couple generations.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 09:58 AM

11. It's depressing when your country turns to fascism.

Millions driven into poverty, government stripping every avenue we have to protect ourselves, and utter contempt for citizens droning from the propaganda machines.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to LloydS of New London (Original post)

Wed Aug 13, 2014, 05:51 PM

19. If you want to see statistics regarding suicide, this is a good resource

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread