Violence and Suicide: What are the connections?
Let’s look at two aspects: (1) Bullying/cyberbulling; and
(2) how to better support traumatized first responders.
@sarahgaer @semavav @traceymedeiros2
I’m always joking that I wear too many hats. I do. When I’m working within my local region (the day job) – Bristol County MA, with a population of 500,000 residing in 20 cities and towns – or doing work across the commonwealth, there are two threads of the suicide prevention tapestry that frequently get tugged.
Does bullying cause suicide and how can we better support our first responders?
This past week there seemed to be a number of articles, research reports, parental concerns related to bullying in general, and bullying and suicide specifically. And we continue to see/read/hear more & more about the need to tear down the walls of judgement preventing first responders to safely and respectfully seek help when needed.
A couple of weeks ago, I was contacted by a regional reporter who wanted to discuss, wait for it – yup, bullying. End result, I’m participating in a Facebook Live panel on Thursday morning here in southeastern MA to discuss bullying (and, for me, suicide prevention). In the conversation, I noted that I recently completed gatekeeper training for an entire police department.
The timing seemed appropriate to gather around the SPSMCHAT 2.0 Reboot! table to take a look at these two issues.
Sarah, Tracey and I invite you to join the conversation Sunday night, 9:00 pm EDT, on Twitter @spsmchat, with a simultaneous YouTube live streaming. Split your screen and cover both! (took me a while to figure out how to do that).
Annemarie Matulis, @semavav
Founder, A Voice at the Table – a movement
Chair, American Association of Suicidology’s Impacted Family & Friends Committee
Sarah Gaer is a suicide loss survivor and a Master’s Level Clinician with twenty years’ experience in the field of mental health care. She has worked as an outpatient clinician, on a crisis team, and led a team of crisis counselors following the June 1st, 2011 tornado in Western and Central MA through a FEMA Crisis Counseling Program (CCP).
Since 2012, Sarah has worked as a Suicide Prevention Specialist focused on men in the middle years and first responders with Riverside Trauma Center. She has trained hundreds of first responders in trauma and suicide prevention in Massachusetts and is a QPR (Question, Persuade & Refer) Master Trainer for the QPR Institute. Sarah is also a member of the Riverside Trauma Center trauma team and has responded to suicides, homicides, natural disasters, and terrorist attacks throughout Massachusetts. She is currently co-chair of the Pioneer Valley Coalition for Suicide Prevention and sits on the Executive Committee for the Massachusetts Coalition for Suicide Prevention.
She has presented her work at International, National, and State Suicide Prevention Conferences and her writings have been published by SAMHSA and the Good Men Project and is preparing to publish her first novel.
To learn more visit sarahgaer.com