Not long ago, Frank King wrote to share this video of his recent TEDx speech. “I’m a full-time public speaker and comedian, and now a mental health activist,” he said. “The TED Talk was my coming out of the closet, as it were, as a person who suffers from depression and thoughts of suicide. It was my first speech on those topics, but it won’t be my last.”
The former joke writer for Jay Leno and “The Tonight Show” has started speaking on behalf of his local chapter of NAMI. “I believe this is the song that I came here to sing,” he says.
Like many people who discover this growing community, he’d like to know what else he can do to help. It would be a shame if all these motivated people get no answer and move on to something more rewarding.
The TED site has posted this essay. And here’s some news:
American Association of Suicidology takes groundbreaking step to engage people who have been suicidal
Washington, D.C., Feb. 5, 2014. The suicide rate is estimated at one in about 10,000 people. For people who have survived a suicide attempt, the risk is far higher. Today, the American Association of Suicidology (AAS) is taking a crucial step to engage this significant population: It is working to create a new division that will give people with the lived experience of suicidal thinking a chance to have a stronger voice in the field of suicide awareness.
The trend toward a more public discussion of suicide attempts continues, and here’s the latest example: The Huffington Post has teamed with TED for a weekend series on “ideas worth spreading,” and this weekend featured the well-known TEDTalk by JD Schramm about his suicide attempt and his wish that we all speak more openly.
“My TEDTalk may have begun a conversation, but the challenge now is how to continue that dialogue,” Schramm writes. The hundreds of comments are worth reading.
It’s been a welcome surprise that most contributors to this blog have been able to write openly, including their names, but this is a good time to remind everyone that people who need to remain anonymous are just as welcome to write something for us.
This week’s post is by Heather, who asks that we use her first name only. “You can put that I’m a psychiatric nurse and a mother to an awesome little boy,” she says in an e-mail.
Welcome to our new look! We’re able to accept and moderate comments now, and they’re already coming in.
This week’s post is by a young Canadian named Alicia Raimundo, one of a very small number of people who regularly get on stage and speak openly about their experiences with attempted suicide and suicidal thinking. She’s just one of two people we know who’ve done TED-related talks about it. Hers is worth watching, and so is JD Schramm’s. While Schramm’s story is more personal, Alicia takes a broader approach.