Letter to the editor 1, May 28, 2016

Dear Editor,

The Soapbox column ‘Break the silence’ (Your Local Journal, May 21) was a much-needed breath of fresh air.

The societal taboo on suicide has for too long exacted collateral damage on the friends and family of its victims. The silence invokes and perpetuates a sense of shame, and stops depressed people from speaking up and seeking help.

They often wear a pleasant mask, hiding their despair until it’s too late. Occasionally a brave family member will tell the true story after the fact. Obituaries sometimes hint at the cause of death. But for the most part we are protected from knowledge of suicide’s extent.

Ask any funeral director, or any mental health professional, to testify to the shocking numbers; they are truly stunning.

Full marks to you for shining a light on the stigma of suicide.

Dianne Bradshaw

St. Lazare

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