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Survivors of suicide say talking will help lower number of deaths by suicide

Survivors of suicide say talking will help lower number of deaths by suicide (MGN graphic)

The number of suicides in South Carolina is going up according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Researchers say suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. If you compare South Carolina to the national average, our suicide rate has been higher for the past five years.

Two mothers whose sons took their own lives say there's a way to keep suicide numbers from climbing even higher, talk about it.

Suicide is a topic that many times people shy away from starting conversations about. Phyllis Snyder and Laura Glazier say talking about suicide helped save their lives, too.

They were brought together under unfortunate circumstances, but together they're much stronger. They're both members of the Survivors of Suicide group started by their friend Pat Dofer.

With the number of deaths by suicide creeping up, some are questioning, 'Why?'

"I think people are talking about it more, so we're hearing of more of the suicides, but I think it has become the easiest way out," said Snyder

Snyder says her son, Cory, waved no red flags.

"You never tell anyone everything about yourself, you know? We hide behind smiles, and that's what he did," she said.

Glazier's son, Max, didn't seem to wave any red flags at the time, but his mom says, looking back now, she can see them.

"When you look back, it seems so obvious, but when you're going through it with somebody, it doesn't seem so obvious," said Glazier.

How do you recognize those red flags if you don't know what they are? That's what drives these survivors of suicide to educate by sharing their stories and helping others with similar ones.

"When there's an opportunity to talk to others about what's happened to me, usually they'll tell me about someone they lost," said Glazier.

"You have to talk about suicide, that's the first preventative that you can do because, once you say the word, it just begins opening doors," said Snyder.

Every year around this time, the Glazier family holds Maxfest, a benefit to celebrate the life of Max Glazier. All of the proceeds go to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

The event is coming up on Sunday afternoon, April 23, 2017, at the Pawleys Island Tavern at 10635 Ocean Highway.

Another suicide prevention event coming up later this year is the annual Out of the Darkness Community Walk.

That event will be held October 14, 2017, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Broadway at the Beach in Myrtle Beach.

For more information about the walk, you can contact Valerie White at 336-707-0022 or ncgopgal@hotmail.com, and Julie Todd at 843-593-6118 or rckgrl7@hotmail.com.

The following is information from the American Association of Suicidology:

A person might be suicidal if he or she:

  • Talks about committing suicide
  • Has trouble eating or sleeping
  • Experiences drastic changes in behavior
  • Withdraws from friends and/or social activities
  • Loses interest in hobbies, work, school, etc.
  • Prepares for death by making out a will and final arrangements
  • Gives away prized possessions
  • Has attempted suicide before
  • Takes unnecessary risks
  • Has had recent severe losses
  • Is preoccupied with death and dying
  • Loses interest in their personal appearance
  • Increases their use of alcohol or drugs

For more information about the American Association of Suicidology, click here.


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