suicide awareness

33 petitions

Update posted 1 month ago

Petition to National Alliance on Mental Illness, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, , Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Merriam-Webster

Change the Definition of Suicide

Every day is a tough day to cope with losing a loved one by suicide. May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Whether you fight your own battle with mental illness or not, you can absolutely support those who need it. And, suicide is an issue that touches people with mental illness as well as those who face other forms of severe mental, emotional, or physical pain. Empathy goes a long way to connect us to each other - at times when you need help, don't you want others to be there for you? Sign the petition to show that you are willing to fight for the people in your life who struggle now - or who may struggle in the future. As a nonprofit organization that promotes awareness of suicide and mental illness and that provides support for those affected, i understand calls on the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention and the National Alliance on Mental Illness to change the definition of suicide on their websites and in their literature, or to add this new definition on their information pages about suicide. Rather than including the outdated, stigmatizing definition about intentionally taking one’s own life, we believe wording should focus on suicide’s tie to severe pain and mental illness. The definition should be changed to, “a terminal side effect of mental illness; the result of wanting one’s physical or emotional pain to end.” Suicide is often a terminal effect of a mental illness. However, you don't have to have a mental illness to have suicidal thoughts or behaviors. Anyone can feel pain, despair, or hopelessness. Difficulties like heartbreak, bullying, financial loss, severe physical pain - any difficult circumstance can cause pain. Ultimately, physical, mental, and emotional pain are what lead to suicide. Without pain, there would be no suicides. Thus, it is time to change the definition so that all of these circumstances can be discussed openly and honestly, providing relief and hope for those struggling. Vonnie, the founder of i understand, lost her husband to suicide, and many of our supporters are survivors, as well. We believe that a change in the definition will change the way we all speak. For example, if you ask how Vonnie’s husband died and she answers, “He killed himself,” how does that make you feel?OrIf she answers, “He died from depression,” how do you feel? Likely, the two answers will lead to very different conversations, the second resulting in a discussion about the suffering he was experiencing. We believe it’s important to talk about WHY someone died rather than HOW someone died by suicide. And those reasons revolve around a struggle so deep that the person sees no other way to manage. We need to focus on the mental illness or pain leading to the death – the causes and symptoms – rather than the act itself. This will increase understanding and reduce the stigma attached to suicide and, in turn, will save lives. A simple change in language can impact those struggling with their physical or mental health, their loved ones, and survivors of suicide loss. We call on AFSP and NAMI to be the first to make a public move affirming this definition by including it in their literature and websites. We believe this should be a movement across the world in mental health organizations, schools, families, dictionaries, psychological organizations, and social circles. Change the conversation with those around you – you never know whose life you could be impacting. AFSP and NAMI - it's time to take action.  i understand is a nonprofit organization based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, promoting awareness of suicide and mental illness and providing support for those affected. We hold support groups for those who have lost a loved one to suicide and we host free monthly community events. We have partnered with Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, where we have funded a Clinical Nurse Specialist who educates about mental health in the traditional hospital setting – the first position of its kind in the country. Our nurse works with staff on using proper language around mental illness and on finding appropriate treatment for patients. Additionally, we provide care packages for those affected by a mental health crisis at the hospital. Visit our website at or find us on Facebook by searching i understand or #iunderstandloveheals

i understand
6,944 supporters
Update posted 3 months ago

Petition to

Justice for Ellen Rae Greenberg

On January 26, 2011, 27-year old Ellen Rae Greenberg was murdered. Authorities ruled her death a homicide, suspicious, but later concluded it was a suicide. On March 15th, after 8 years of independent investigation, an article on provided additional insight and and lingering questions surrounding her case.  The forensic information doesn't add up. “I don’t understand how they wrote this off as a suicide.” - Cyril H. Wecht, forensic pathologist We are the family and friends of Ellen, who want to see justice served and her case re-opened and re-investigated as a homicide. Ellen was a shining light loved by her family, friends, and students. She was a first grade teacher at Juaniata Park Academy. Ellen was “found with fatal stab wounds to her chest at 6:30 p.m. … inside her Venice Lofts apartment on Flat Rock Road, just off of Main Street. The apartment building had 24-hour security and a tenant key card system, making it nearly impossible for an intruder to enter. Her death is still being treated by Philadelphia police as “suspicious.” On Saturday, police backed away from earlier statements that Greenberg’s death was a “homicide.”” - Whyy, January 31, 2011 “It is uncommon that homicide detectives and the Medical Examiner's Office have conflicting theories on the manner of death, but police spokesman Lt. Ray Evers told The Philadelphia Daily News that the investigation has uncovered new facts, though he declined to disclose any further information. At this time, detectives have listed Greenberg's death as "suspicious," and are leaning their probe in a non-criminal direction, according to CBS affiliate KYW.” - CBS News, January 31, 2011. Please sign the petition below to urge the courts to reopen Ellen’s case and get justice for our beautiful daughter, friend, niece, and cousin. FOLLOW US on Twitter and Facebook with #justiceforellen FB: Twitter: Instagram:

Ellen Watch
8,640 supporters