Teens & Suicide Loss: A Conversation
Every year in the United States, nearly a million teenagers lose someone to suicide. Most of them will deal with it alone.
The stigma that clings to suicide precludes it from being fully integrated into the larger national health care discussion, sending an implicit message to those left behind: because your loved one died by suicide, there is somehow something wrong with you.
Grieving teenagers, already likely to feel more shame, anger, guilt, and abandonment (and at higher risk for subsequent anxiety and depression) than if the loss had been due to something more “acceptable” like a car accident or cancer, face the world unprepared, unsupported, misunderstood, and with a deep sense of loneliness.
"My mom took her own life when I was thirteen
I've never met another kid my age who has gone through the same thing as I have."
While communities rally around other tragedies by organizing fundraisers, bake sales, and graduation tributes, when the issue is suicide that kind of support is often absent.
"One of the things that was really difficult for me was going back to school. No-one knew."
“My friends were kind of weird around me. They didn’t know what to say.”
Even though they crave validation of their feelings, they’ll rarely seek out traditional sources of help such as counseling or support groups; and while there are some excellent bereavement support services available, nothing exists that speaks to teens about suicide loss in their own voice.
Directed by Rethink’s award-winning Chief Creative Consultant, Geoffrey Cantor, Talking OutLOUD will reach teens where they are, delivering a desperately-needed message of hope and healing directly from teens to their peers, through the familiar, anonymous, and safe medium of video.