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Take another bite

...We are treating most of today’s individuals with suicidal ideation the way we always have- as a mental health illness or disorder. I believe that it has now reached a point that is beyond that. I believe it has become a cultural wave that has caused this rise in suicidal rates and suicidal ideation amongst young adults and teenagers. Think about it, we live in a pretty cushy world. We don’t have to hunt for our food. We don’t have to go days without eating. We don’t have to take our kids out of school, so they can work and help earn money for the family. We live in a world (and I am talking about most of America, certainly not the case for everyone) where things come pretty easy. Women aren’t dying from childbirth anymore. Kids aren’t dying from a cold or being eaten by a wild animal. You rarely hear about someone NOT going to college. If we were to rewind 50 years, it would be the opposite, most people didn’t have the opportunity to go to college. So why is everyone so depressed and anxious? What does everyone have to be upset about. I always think of Game of Thrones when I start thinking this way. I understand it is a fictional tale but there are many realistic lifestyles and experiences that the characters go through that our late ancestors had to deal with. We have come a long way. While watching Game of Thrones I often think, “Now, that would be a reason to be depressed or think about suicide!” If you don’t watch Game of Thrones, just ask the person next to you what I’m talking about.

That’s not to say that there aren’t still real struggles for individuals today. I don’t mean to minimize anyone’s emotions or trauma. That’s also not to say that we don’t still deal with true mental health illnesses and disorders. I work in the field, I am well aware that mental health issues are very real, and many individuals have to figure out ways to coexist with a chemical imbalance that creates depression or anxiety. That is not what my research focuses on. I am talking about the added factor that has been piled on top of that and is now also affecting those who don’t struggle with a true mental health disorder....

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