Newspaper Covers Suicide Prevention Conference in Daytona

The Daytona Beach News-Journal had a very interesting and informative report on a suicide prevention conference held there, Survivor shares experience at suicide prevention conference.

On the opening day of the conference, a report was released showing a 41.5 percent increase in deaths by suicide overall in Volusia County: 109 in 2010 compared to 78 in 2009. In 2009, the rate was historically low, according to Mental Health America of East Central Florida in Daytona Beach.

15 of the 109 in from Volusia in 2010 were aged 16-29.

Volusia County had 107 suicides in 2008, up from 87 in 2007.

Flagler County had 11 suicides in 2008, down from 18.

Daytona Beach is in Volusia. This is a hardly surprising statistic. Volusia County, according to Wikipedia, has a population of 496,575 (ca. 2006) people while Flagler has a population of only 49,832 (ca. 2000).

I’ve always wondered about the motivations for suicide attempts, and to what extent a certain amount of over-indulgent selfishness might be involved.

It’s also a “tragic misconception,” he [Florida State University psychology professor Thomas Joiner] said, that the person usually believes he is a burden to others and his death will be worth more than his life.

As absurd as the activities of the vast majority of the people here and abroad are, why would this or that person’s presumed insignificance be exceptional?

“That person is wrong — they are not doing anybody a favor,” Joiner said.

Strange leap here, I suppose. If a person doesn’t pull the trigger, he or she is right; if a person does pull the trigger, he or she is wrong. Dead or wounded maybe, I don’t think pulling a trigger decides right and wrong.

Seven out of 10, he said, also express the wish that they want to die before taking their life.

I, and pardon me for doing so, blame poor parenting skills to a certain extent, but at the general and not at the specific level. You’d think that if parents were intent on instilling in their children a sense of awe at the magnificense of life, and particularly in the magnificense of one’s own life, maybe suicide would be a little less prevalent than it has, with the passage of time, become.