Updated: Sep 4, 2020
Friends and Community,
This week kicks off Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. This awareness I hold very close to my heart.
I was one of them.
For many years, my “hearing” counselors could not understand what I was struggling with or why. I struggled with why I was sexually abused for many years as a child. I struggled with my identity. Am I deaf or Deaf? Am I deaf & dumb, hearing impaired, a hearing person, or hard of hearing? There were so many labels and I was confused by which label fit me. I had communication and cultural barriers growing up into my adult years. For many years, I suffered alone, in my little dark world. 25 years ago, I tried to take my life. Today, I am living proof, that there is light at the end of the dark tunnel. There is.
Spreading awareness of Suicide Prevention is essential. Mental illness affects a lot of us. It’s vital we talk (whether it be through signing or verbal) about suicide. I’m not ashamed I tried because I know I am not alone in this struggle. I know I am not the only person who tried. 3,900 people with hearing loss die by suicide every year in Iowa. 98% of individuals with hearing loss do not get proper treatment due to culture and communication barriers. We need to be the light for those who are struggling in the dark.
Please join me in spreading the awareness of Suicide Prevention. You could help save one life. At DIAA, we have several events to bring awareness to suicide prevention. We hope you can join one or all of these events.
Our slogan is fitting for this month’s awareness.
As a community, let’s join hands and be the light for those who are struggling in the dark.