• Mighty Parenting Tackles Teen Suicide Prevention | Sandy Fowler and Judy Davis | Episode 86

  • Even the thought of teen suicide is enough to make us want to bury our heads in the sand. But what if there was something you could do to help protect your child as well as others and reduce their risk of attempting suicide? Teen suicide rates are on the rise and we all need to work together to help our teens, tweens and twenty-somethings be safe. We know the fastest way to get in front of this crisis is teen suicide prevention awareness and giving parents tools they can use. Judy Davis and Sandy Fowler tackle the topic of teen suicide on the Mighty Parenting podcast by taking an honest look at the problem and sharing a simple path to prevention.



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    A Favorite Quote from the Show: 

    Our kids don’t want to burden us so they hide their pain behind a mask.

    High Points of Our Conversation About Teen Suicide Prevention:

    emotional pain, preventing suicideThere is a suicide epidemic happening among our teenagers. They are living in a state of hopelessness and see suicide as the only answer.

    The CDC tells us that, on average, 3041 teens in grades 9-12 attempt suicide every day. 4061 lives are lost in a year.

    This is scary for parents and we don’t know what to do. Subsequently, we let ourselves believe it can’t be our kid, their friend, or someone in our family. 

    Suicide attempts happen among teens from every walk of life. There is no discrimination due to race, gender, or socio-economic background.

    Judy’s son attempted suicide multiple times. She didn’t know until 2012 when the crisis center called her to say her son was in trouble. She had no idea that her son was in so much pain, and neither did anyone else. He showed the world a mask—a different, happy version of himself. He had friends, did well in school, and appeared to be fine, but he wasn’t.

    Teens in pain will often wear a mask. They hide behind expressions, words, and lies. They show what  the world wants to see so no one knows the pain they are experiencing.

    Teens often believe there is something wrong with them, they are alone, or have to solve their problems alone. 

    Building our relationship with our child helps them to know they are not alone.

    Culturally there are issues that make life hard for our kids:

    • They have difficulty picking up the cues that someone is paying attention.
    • Social media reinforces the messages of “There’s something wrong with me” or “I’m not good enough”.
    • They don’t know how to simply be present and relax.
    • They feel like they don’t have anyone to reach out to.

    Suicide ideation is a problem that can be solved.

    Our kids experience world-wide competition. Instead of competing with just the kids in their neighborhood or school, they are competing with the whole world. It reinforces the belief that they are not good enough.

    What parents can do:

    • Open our eyes and be willing to accept suicide is an issue and it could affect someone we know
    • Get rid of the myths and stigmas around mental health and suicide
    • Start conversations and share stories around mental and emotional wellness and even suicide
    • Give the same support to people for mental and emotional health issues that we provide for physical issues and illnesses

    There are many levels of problems in mental health. We have to handle anything from what to do when our feelings get hurt all the way up to suicide ideation.

    We need to educate ourselves so we can get in front of the suicide crisis. Start reading, listening, talking, and supporting each other.

    Knowing you aren’t the only one feeling that way is extremely important for mental and behavioral health. Sharing our stories is key in doing that.

    If you are with someone who is in danger call 911. If you are with someone who is experiencing extreme emotions or feelings they don’t know what to do with, they can text 741741 or call 800-273-TALK. You can sit with them while they call. If you’re with someone in crisis and don’t know what to do you can call to ask how to help the person you are with.

    You can start educating yourself at DASIUM.net as well as get Warning Signs: The Parenting Guide for Determining if Your Teen is At Risk for Depression, Addiction, or Suicide.

    Resources Mentioned in Show:

    Our Hosts Sandy Fowler and Judy Davis:

    Sandy Fowler stress reliefSandy Fowler is a wife, mom, and business owner whose passion is teaching people to make powerful choices that impact their lives in the best possible way. Whether she is speaking to a group, hosting her podcast, coaching a client, or leading a meditation, she is always helping busy women and parents find simple ways to make life better. Her natural curiosity paired with her down-to-earth, practical approach to living, working, and prospering, allows her to help them take back their lives from the busyness and stress of modern-day living and create emotional wellness and peace. She has been quoted on sheknows.com, published in Mompreneur magazine, featured in a cover story in the Detroit Free Press Twist Magazine, featured as an expert on The Michigan Women’s Marketplace, and has been a guest on many podcasts.

    Judy DavisJudy Davis, aka The Direction Diva, is a sought after motivational speaker, entrepreneur, and co-founder of Mighty Parenting. She is a small business and teen suicide prevention expert as well as an influencer in the military spouse community. Judy is passionate about providing programs and resources to families across the nation. A recipient of the 2016 Dove Real Beauty Award, Judy has also been quoted, featured, and profiled in a variety of publications and interviews including Smart Money Magazine, Hiring America TV, The Jim Bohannan show, Dr. Laura Berman Show, and more. She is regularly featured as a parenting and military lifestyle expert/guest on radio shows and panels highlighting the challenges and issues facing families today.

    To learn more or connect with our guests visit MightyParenting.com