For people between the ages of 10 and 24, suicide is the third leading cause of death in the U.S.* We at 412teens aim to encourage teens and show them that there is hope for this life on earth, that they are important and needed and special, that God has a plan for them—even when it seems like the plan is fuzzy. "For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all" (2 Corinthians 4:17).
To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA) is a non-profit organization that exists to encourage, inform, inspire, and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery for those struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury, and suicide. They have been doing stuff during National Suicide Prevention Week to raise awareness, and they have a great message for teens that we felt compelled to share with you. Here's a little piece of that:
"...we need each other. We need relationships and community around us. ...we have to continue listening to each other’s stories, and we must continue sharing our own. We need to know each other’s accounts of suffering, as well as our experiences of healing and recovery."
And sharing them is part of our way of saying, "You are a unique and awesome creation of God—one that cannot be replaced because there is no one precisely like you, nor will there ever be again!"
To choose to remove yourself from this world is to choose to take a star out of the sky. Sure, there are lots of stars out there, but only ONE of you. What would the night sky be like if thousands of stars chose to blink out of existence every year? How black the night would surely be then...
God designed you specifically for an amazing purpose on this planet. You may not recognize what it is right now, but that makes it no less important and awesome. Realize that YOU CANNOT BE REPLACED. There will never be another you, and the world would be darker without the light of your life.
Tell us why YOU can't be replaced. It might take a while to think of a reason or you might have something in mind right now. Pick a way to share your story:
If you or someone you know struggles with or is talking about suicide, please get help right away. Everyone has hard times and may think that death is the easiest solution, but those who regularly talk or write about suicide are usually at a more serious point and are in need of help right away. If this is you, you must get up right now and talk to someone about it.
* Source: Center for Disease Control
Cat is the webmaster and editor of 412teens.org and writes novellas with local young writers at her workshops. She also contributes at GotQuestions.org, Blogos.org, and GQkidz.org. When Catiana is not writing or hanging out with teens, she loves spending time with her two kids, five socially awkward cats, and her amazing friend-amily that gets together every Saturday for various shenanigans.