After 10 years working in the suicide prevention field, Mary Jadwisiak provides a series of workshops targeted to increase suicide awareness for youth and adults. Skill building workshops for parents, school staff, corporate HR personnel and community members are based on the latest research. People leave these workshops knowing what to look for and what to do if they see it.
60 minutes Developed for Psychiatric Grand Rounds, this workshop teaches basic suicide prevention skills with the addition of data regarding mental health recovery. Psychiatrists are encouraged to deliver a message of recovery and hope.
If you hire veterans you need this workshop. Twenty-two veterans die by suicide every day—that’s nearly one each hour. The suicide of a coworker will negatively impact your entire organization and increase risk for the ones left behind. Give your employees the power of knowing the warning signs of suicide and the skills they need to act when they see them. This workshop also provides resources for local and national suicide prevention support as well as resources designed specifically for veterans.
After 10 years working in the suicide prevention field, Mary Jadwisiak provides a series of workshops targeted to end youth suicide. Workshops for Parents, School Staff and community members are based on the latest research and promote skill building. 30 – 90 minutes
Go the next step. Take this 2-day interactive workshop to learn suicide intervention skills. This workshop is highly recommended for HR personnel or any professional working closely with the public. The curriculum prepares gatekeepers to integrate intervention principles into everyday practices. Skills and principles are illustrated by case studies presented in video and live dramatizations. Participants have multiple opportunities to practice skills in role-playing simulations and to engage in highly interactive discussions with other participants and workshop trainers. Each participant receives a Suicide Intervention Handbook CD.
How we talk about suicide matters. Knowing how to talk with media about reporting on suicide is essential to engage them in responsible reporting of prevention efforts. This workshop and keynote is based on industry standards for safely working with media.
So, today I gave a talk to some good people in Vancouver Washington to kick off the Employment as a Recovery Tool conference they’re having. There are lots of displays and workshops. I was the keynote speaker and was told to “do the thing I do about roles” and “be motivating”. Since I live nearby the good people at Clark County have heard many of my speeches and workshops and knew exactly what they wanted. As I put my slides together, I got to thinking. What about me. Am I really who I think I am and how do I know? So much of who I am is in my head and I don’t know how much of it actually comes out. Conversely, does the stuff that comes out reflect who I am in my head? We all have interior and exterior ways that we see ourselves and define ourselves. It’s like we’re in a bubble under water and there is a pressure outside that defines us and a pressure inside that defines us and the trick is to keep both pressures equal. Sometimes, when I get a glimpse of how I look or how people see me from the outside, it’s really startling. People often define me far differently that I define myself. Maybe that’s why some people hate to have their picture taken or why we think one photo of our self is better than another. The “bad” picture may not represent who we are in our heads. So, what creates that inside identity? Where do we get those inside messages? Ironically, they come from the outside, initially. Family, doctors, environment, experiences all work hard as interior decorators. Then we add our own distortions or perspectives that come with age, heartbreak, triumph, betrayal and/or love and we wind up with the finely tuned “secret identify” we carry around with us. I recently decided to out my secret identity. I got really sick with a high fever and had an insight to the fact that I really did have a secret identity that it was driving all my decisions and defining my choices. I realized my secret identity was a lie! Once the fever broke, the lie was still a lie and I began to heal on several levels. I started to tell people the truth about my internal beliefs. As soon as I called it a lie, I felt better. I started to tell people about the lie and they agreed that it was a lie. So, slowly my life is getting bigger. I am getting stronger and more confident. Choosing to define myself rather than let other people define me is scary, but really liberating. I’m not afraid of making mistakes so much now that other people’s opinions are fairly irrelevant. Here’s the kicker. I created my own secret identity and I now choose to change it. Now THAT’s self – determination.
Talking about suicide is tough. It’s a difficult subject that makes people avert their eyes and lower their voices. But the truth is, if we want to stop suicide and make our communities and companies safer, we have to talk about it: Out load and up close. Let’s start with just how serious an issue it is. At any given time, approximately 5% of your workforce is considering suicide. In 2010 over 38,350 people killed themselves in the United States. This is a tragedy that leaves families and loved ones reeling with disbelief and confusion. But the loss doesn’t stop there. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 85 percent of all suicides occur among the nation’s workforce, Americans ages 25-65. The impact of suicide on a corporate family consisting of 100,000 employees, with an average of 4 blood relatives per employee, includes: The loss of one employee or family member to suicide every 7 days. Three suicide attempts every day since there are about 25 nonfatal suicide attempts for every reported suicide. (This is a very conservative estimate.) Some of these attempts result in a significant medical injury and disability, which directly impacts health care costs, particularly for self-insured companies. Paul Quinnett, PhD, Director, the QPR Institute, Spokane, Wash The annual cost of workforce-related suicides has been calculated by Research America to be approximately $13 billion in 2005 dollars. Research America fact sheet 21 As for veterans, well, although the VA has only been tracking war veteran suicides since 2008, it’s clear that veteran suicide rates appear significantly higher than those among comparable civilians. On average 22 Veterans die from suicide each day. That is not a misprint – each day. If your company hires Veterans, a suicide prevention program is essential for your workplace. “So, what can we do?” You’re wondering. “This is too big for us”. The good news is that there are proven techniques that can help connect people at risk of suicide with help and support. No company is too small or too big to implement some strategic, uniform suicide prevention efforts that involve the entire company from parking lot attendant to senior management. Step 1. Talk about it. Bring suicide prevention and veterans suicide prevention out of the darkness and into the boardroom, break room, or cubicle cluster. Create a culture where discussing suicide prevention, resources and warning signs is part of your corporate culture. TALKING ABOUT SUICIDE WILL NOT CREATE CONTAGION. Talking about suicide saves lives. Note: Ensure that any media campaign follows media safety guidelines as provided by the American Association of Suicidology. Step 2. Educate your workforce. There are some very good training programs out there that will help to educate your workforce about the warning signs for suicide. But, a good program also teaches skills. That is, what to do when you see those warning signs. Everyone needs to learn a few awareness skills, such as: a) How to ask the question – “Are you thinking of… read more →
Is it really OK to ask about suicide? Really? YES! ASK Already. People thinking of suicide are conflicted and in a lot of pain. They want to talk about the situation, but they don’t know if you want to hear it. They send off warning signs sometimes knowingly, sometimes unknowingly, because they want to stay alive. They are waiting for you to bring it up. People thinking of suicide are waiting for you to ask: Ask directly; ask clearly; ask it again until you’re sure you believe the answer. People tell me, “That seems harsh”. “It feels very intrusive” “I’m too awkward to just outright ask”. So let me tell you – when you ask directly about suicide in a caring way, people will answer you honestly and directly. Often people are relieved to have an opportunity to talk about their pain. Besides – what’s the worst that could happen? You’re embarrassed? How does that compare with saving a person’s life? So, let me help you out. There is a formula you can use that will simplify everything. I call it the “no dodge” question. Make sure your questions is: In the present tense – right now are you thinking of suicide? A Yes or no question – this is not the time to discuss the politics of suicide. Yes or no – do you want to kill yourself? Using the word “suicide” or “kill yourself” – Euphemisms are not helpful here. Asking directly tells the person you are willing to talk about suicide. Here is an example: “You are very upset about this [breakup, job loss, mistake whatever the problem is]. Sometimes when people experience this type of loss, they think of suicide. Are you thinking of suicide?” One more thing – asking about suicide will NOT plant the seed. Not asking about suicide puts the person’s life at greater risk. Once the person is talking with you, get help. Call your local crisis line or the national suicide prevention hotline. Here are some more resources to help you out. National Suicide Prevention Hotlines 1-800 273-TALK (273-8255) press 1 for Veteran support 1-800- Suicide (784-2433) press 1 for Veteran support 1-866- 4U Trevor (488-7386) – GLBT support On-line Resources www.yspp.org www.reachout.com www.suicidology.org www.mindyourmind.ca www.thetrevorproject.org www.sprc.org www.spanusa.org www.suicidepreventionlifeline.com (on-line chat available)
One of the things about being the spokesperson for HOPE, is that I am continually looking for ways to say “Look! There it is!” Sometimes, it’s hard for me. Sometime I want to post “meh” and go back to bed, or worse, I want to point out the negative and become caustic and bitter (yes, it’s my default) But then I think of those of you who have told me you look forward to my posts and you appreciate my words, so I put the “meh” aside and start looking. I am surprised at how just being myself is helpful to others. It leads me to the truth: Being myself – all of me – is what is expected of me all the time. I have to be all in or I’m not living my purpose. I am my purpose. YOU are your purpose. Being completely present, self-accepting and connected is what makes us so beautifully unique. It is the ultimate human challenge. So then I started thinking – what happened to make me, or you, not be fully present? What makes us think we’re not enough or not capable or not competent. I think it starts with fear. Fear is what makes people run for cover. I ran for cover in food, sex, anger, alcohol, TV, sleep… you name it, I’ve hid behind it. I’m not sure what we’re afraid of, but it can become a habit. We learn to live with showing up half way and hiding the stuff we think we can’t show. I know that when I allow my head and my heart to be connected and be present at the same time, I can do anything! Fear becomes like a paper wall and when I move through it, I am stronger. When my head and heart are connected – I am present and I don’t hide. When I step out into the clearing – out from under cover – I am vulnerable and exposed. But if I do it with intention and awareness, I’m safe. For me, safety is found within. When I am connected mentally, physically, spiritually & emotionally I am fully present and I feel safe. When I feel safe, I take risks and know that It’s OK to be myself – even if – especially if – I’m not perfect. So, THANK YOU for telling me I’m good enough and helping me stay balanced and well and….HOPEFUL! Thanks for helping me connect my head and my heart and go “all in”. I am holding the hope for myself and for all of you. We can do this big and bold, when we stay connected, to ourselves and each other.