Suicide occurs 5 to 6 times more often among Indigenous youth than non-Indigenous youth, and is the leading cause of death for Indigenous people.

Why is this the case?

Feelings of isolation and loneliness can be very hard when you are living in an isolated community, or have just moved to a big city away from family and your community. Finding resources available for Aboriginal youth can be overwhelming. It can be difficult to ask for help, and you may feel like nobody understand the pain and loneliness that you are experiencing.

The good news is that there are other individuals who have overcome their pain and loneliness, and who have decided that suicide is not the answer. You can do the same.

I am feeling suicidal. What can I do?

TALK TO SOMEONE

Reach out to a friend, call a crisis line, message a family member. Telling someone how you feel can be really hard, but staying silent can be even harder. If you don’t feel like talking, then ask someone to just stay with you on the phone, or to sit with you until you feel a little bit better.

MAKE A LIST

Write down a list of things that make you happy. Everybody has activities that make them happy, whether it is drawing, walking your dog, watching a favourite TV show, or playing a sport. By making a list of these things, whether it is one thing or 20, you remind yourself of the things that make you feel good about living.

THINK OF THE PEOPLE YOU CARE ABOUT

Choosing to take your life means choosing to leave the people you care about behind. Friends, family, elders, pets – they love you. You may think taking your life will be better for everyone, but by taking your life, you are passing on your pain to the people who care about you. They don’t want to live without you.

TURN TO CULTURE

Say a prayer, look to your creator, find someone to smudge with, listen to drum music, fiddle music, or throat singing. Culture can make us feel stronger and less alone – that is the reason that it exists. You are an important part of something bigger, and your ancestors are always looking out for you.

WATCH A WE MATTER VIDEO

The We Matter Campaign was started for you, by people like you who have experienced feelings of hopelessness and loneliness. FIND A VIDEO that you can relate to, and watch it five times if you need to. You are just as strong and capable as everyone who has already made a video.

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There are resources available for Aboriginal youth.

HOPE Clan

A resource to help you build your support network.

http://www.hopeclan.ca/

Centre for Suicide Prevention

The Centre offers supportive workshops for Aboriginal youth.

www.suicideinfo.ca

© 2017 WE MATTER