CW: This post discusses suicide and suicide awareness.
Suicide Prevention Awareness Month is extremely important for many reasons, but one of the most important is that it’s a chance to have open discussions about suicide and suicide prevention. It’s also a good time to share resources for those who may need them, as well as people looking to share information with their loved ones and communities. Over the years, I’ve been able to put together an extensive list of resources surrounding suicide prevention, which is what I’d like to share again this year.
Below are some links and descriptions to some of the more well-known suicide prevention resources, websites and phone numbers. If you have any questions about anything I’ve listed or want to know more, please get in touch so you can get the information you need.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
For anyone who might have missed it, 988 is now the three-digit dialing code that routes callers to the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. Last year, the Lifeline transitioned away from the National Suicide Prevention Line’s previously recognized 10-digit number, to the three-digit 988 Lifeline (the previous 1-800-273-TALK (8255) number will continue to function). The Lifeline provides “free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals.” This suicide prevention center offers more resources than just the hotline – there’s an online chat if you can’t talk on the phone, as well as specific resources for Veterans, LGBTQ+, Attempt Survivors and other groups of people who could be at risk.
Crisis Text Line
Talking on the phone isn’t always the best option, and that’s where the Crisis Text Line can help. By texting ‘TALK’ to 741741, you can have a confidential text conversation with someone. The first priority for the Crisis Text line ‘is helping people move from a hot moment to a cool calm, guiding you to create a plan to stay safe and healthy.’
Suicide Prevention Resource Center
The SPRC is the only federally supported resource center specifically about suicide prevention, and they offer information on the best techniques and approaches for suicide prevention. This site is especially helpful in some of the training they offer including online courses and webinars.
The Trevor Project
Founded specifically to focus on suicide prevention for young people in the LGBTQ+ community, the Trevor Project offers several free resources to immediately help those in need including the Trevor Lifeline (1-866-488-7386), Trevor Chat, Trevor Text and Trevor Space (you can reach all of these through their ‘Get Help Now’ page).
Veterans Crisis Line
Like many of the resources offered here, the Veterans Crisis Line offers a confidential hotline, online chat and text support. Another important resource this crisis line provides is that after a call or chat, you can be referred to a Suicide Prevention Coordinator at that person’s local VA medical center.
SAMHSA’s National Helpline
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) national helpline can provide more helpful support not only to people struggling with their mental health but also substance abuse (or both). The helpline makes it a point to note that they take calls in both English and Spanish.
The Trans Lifeline was founded in 2014 as a peer-crisis support hotline, they are a “trans-led organization that connects trans people to the community, support, and resources they need to survive and thrive.” Their peer-support hotline (877-565-8860) is available from 10am-4pm EST in the U.S., and is run both for and by trans people.
In addition to these helplines, other phone numbers to know include the RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline (1-800-656-4673) and the National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline (1-866-331-9474). If you’re looking to connect with local resources, I would also research helplines and local facilities in your area. Knowing where a local clinic, mental health facility or psychiatric unit of a hospital could be life-saving, especially when you don’t have to do that research during a crisis.
When we share information like this publicly, we’re calling attention to the many ways that people can receive support or feel heard during their struggles. The more information we share, the better prepared we are in the fight against suicide.
During Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, it’s important to share as many resources as possible – if you know of any resources not listed here, please share them in the comments!