We've been killing ourselves at twice the rate we've been killing each other in Arizona. That says a lot about the gaps in mental health care, as well as the toll that internalized oppression takes on people here.
I sure hope some of the 2010 political candidates have a better vision for the future than more prisons to bolster our economic base (and psychiatric "facilities" to keep the people who make us uncomfortable with their suffering off the streets). Look at the prospects they put on the horizon for us now: no wonder we're all doing ourselves in.
There's also a link to a very moving memorial following the article. Check it out.
It was a suicide attempt, Ayotte said, one of several the 47-year-old Phoenix resident has made over the years. Ayotte survived, and as she recovered, she noticed a new approach her clinical team was taking.
Before, she would awake in an intensive-care unit to find a
or nurse barking questions.
Did you think this would solve anything? Didn't you think about your family? What were you thinking?
This time, no one blamed Ayotte. Instead, she saw a doctor who got up from behind his desk and sat down next to her. "I'm concerned for you," he said. And together they began to create a "safe zone" for Ayotte, moving her
from the bathroom to the kitchen, where she would have trouble accessing them without her husband or another loved one noticing.
Ayotte's doctor had embraced the principles of an approach to treating suicide that is new to Maricopa County. This fall, Magellan Health Services, which was hired by the state in 2007 to improve mental-health care in the county, launched a new plan to reduce suicides.
. In 2007, 986 Arizonans died by suicide, twice the number of those who were murdered, according to Magellan. The rate of suicide was 15.9 per 100,000 people; in New York, the rate was 6.9 per 100,000.(read more)
Loved ones Lost to Suicide
The above link is to a slide show at AZ Central.com, which someone made to memorialize those whose lives have been lost to suicide. It's quite intimate and worth the journey if you give yourself a little time.