Letter: Talking about suicide won't solve the problem

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  • tomla Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2018 1:13 p.m.

    I'm the guy who wrote the original letter. Let me clarify what I meant. I didn't do a good job conveying what I was thinking.

    First, I didn't write the headline. If I had, it would not have said "Talking about suicide won't solve the problem", but instead would have said "We don't know if suicide awareness programs increase or decrease suicide rates".

    Second, I think parents talking to kids, and doctors & psychologists & school counselors talking to their patients/students about suicide is critically important.

    Third, just as we would never broadly treat a deadly disease with a medication that had not been scientifically proven to be safe and effective, we should scientifically test whether suicide awareness programs and related media campaigns increase or decrease suicide rates. If such studies exist, I'd be excited to see them. These kinds of broad-based programs are what I meant by "talking about suicide". I was too vague.

    Fourth, I was surprised to find that in addition to correcting spelling and grammar errors, the Deseret News can actually add words to Letters to the Editor - of the first 37 words of my letter, 14 of them were words inserted by the Deseret News.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Jan. 27, 2018 4:12 p.m.

    Fact Check says:

    "The Church loves and respects children living with a same-gender couple, and welcomes them at Church meetings and activities."

    -- Guffaw!!! What a load of falsehood.

    "They are invited and welcome."

    -- They certainly do not feel welcome. That, sir is a FACT.

    Mike R says:

    "There is a plan of happiness. It is never found in self-destruction."

    --- I can agree with you for a change (miracles never cease).

    J Thompson says:

    "A child cannot serve two masters. A child who is being raised in a home with two daddies or two mommies is not put in a position where he must condemn the actions of parents."

    --- This ALSO applies to children being raised by an adulterous parent or in a household of UNmarried heterosexuals. WHY are these children not being "protected" also? BECAUSE your reasoning is not the true reason at all. (the rest of your comment is just belief, not fact).

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Jan. 27, 2018 4:04 p.m.

    Here's something else we know, Tom. Religion triggers suicides.

  • ugottabkidn Sandy, UT
    Jan. 27, 2018 8:57 a.m.

    It’s annoying to me that, uninformed commentators can stand on the sidelines and pretend a “one size fits all” approach is the answer to anything let alone unspeakable tragedy. It might suit you well to sweep it under the rug but as time goes on society is realizing it is a bigger problem than you ever knew as always has been.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Jan. 27, 2018 7:51 a.m.

    May be its all in the words. Is it straight is the way or srate. As in the migalen strate. I think ya need to find the the strate. Find Jesus.

  • unrepentant progressive Bozeman, MT
    Jan. 27, 2018 6:44 a.m.

    Mr Richards

    Again religion injected into an argument. IMO, toxic. I respect that you have sincerely held beliefs of a religious nature, and you are certainly entitled to belief as you will. But, the issue of abortion that you seem to be alluding to (and apologies if that is not the case) is off topic.

    Some of us don't believe that life begins at conception. And some of us believe that a woman should have to right to choose whether or not she must carry a fetus to term. Limits to a degree.

    We believe it, as sincerely as you believe otherwise. Why are you trying to force us to believe as you do? Are you asking us to accept theocracy?

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Jan. 26, 2018 4:34 p.m.

    Unrepentant progressive,

    Why in the name of everything holy would any person cite his own authority to defend life when society has winked at destroying life 60,000,000 times - not counting California which will not release its count if abortions? Why would any youth respectfully listen to any adult who morally flip-flopped when deciding who should live and who should die?

    The center of life is either man or God. It can't be both. Either God is our Father in Heaven or we are the creators who have crawled out of the mythical swamp. If God is our Father, then God makes the rules, including the rule that life is sacred, not to be thrown away when it becomes a burden to someone, even if that person is self. If we crawled out of the mythical swamp, then there are no rules of conduct except those set by mankind. If mankind has no authority over life or death, then living or dying are opposite sides of one coin. Flip it and see what you get.

    God does exist. God is our Father. God loves us and has instructed us to preserve life and to love life and to enjoy life to the fullest by keeping His rules about life.

    Thou shall not kill - each other or self. Life needs discussion.

  • unrepentant progressive Bozeman, MT
    Jan. 26, 2018 3:37 p.m.

    How in the name of all that is holy, can anyone not see that keeping our mouths shut about suicide is exactly the wrong strategy. If you are so blinded by your faith tradtion as to believe that, I don't even know where to begin an honest discussion for any community to deal with the problem. IMO, religion and suicide have little to do with one another. And interjecting religion into the discussion only muddies the water all the more.

  • J Thompson SPRINGVILLE, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 1:55 p.m.

    The prophets of the Church teach the revealed word of God, just like Moses or Noah did. Many times the prophets are ignored just like Noah and Moses were ignored. Anyone remember the Flood or the Golden Calf?

    Christ chose his Apostles and Prophets. Those men MUST declare only that which Christ gives them to declare. They're not trying to satisfy anyone but the Master. Christ revealed to the World that marriage is only between a man and a woman. He also revealed that our sexual identity is part of our eternal being, not something that we choose on our own.

    A child cannot serve two masters. A child who is being raised in a home with two daddies or two mommies is not put in a position where he must condemn the actions of parents. That child is not placed under covenant until he can legally and lawfully make decisions without permission from parents.

    Christ invites everyone to change from what they are to what is vest for them. No one is exempt. Change is required in every person's life.

  • Fact Check Pleasant Grove, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 12:05 p.m.


    Children of same-gender parents are welcome in priesthood meeting. They are not baptized or ordained as minors because of the conflicting situation it would place them in. They may choose as adults to be baptized, receive the priesthood, serve missions, and participate in every way. They are invited and welcome.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 11:11 a.m.

    "The Church loves and respects children living with a same-gender couple, and welcomes them at Church meetings and activities."

    Really? Then explain church policy that children of SSM parents can't hold the priesthood until they are 18 and need to denounce their parents relationship. They are not welcome at meetings involving priesthood holders, and it separates them from other 12 year olds.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Jan. 26, 2018 9:07 a.m.

    Suicide is devestating. It destroys the living as well as those who chose to destroy their own bodies. It settles no problems. We are told that we will take every emotion, every thought, every desire with us when we leave this life. We are told to face up to everything that bothers us while we are mortal. Pretending that God will welcome us with open arms when we have denied his plan that requires us to rely on the Atonement of his Son to handle anything and everything that is above our ability to handle, is denying everything that God stands for. Those who have attempted suicide and failed, but who have had a glimpse of the other side, tell us that there is nothing warm nor welcoming nor desirerable waiting for those who destroy themselves. Those who have seen the other side through no desire for self-destruction tell of a wonderful experience. They see a place of love, of beauty, and of peace.

    If we help people solve problems, all will benefit. There is a plan of happiness. It is never found in self-destruction.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 8:54 a.m.

    "The Church loves and respects children living with a same-gender couple, and welcomes them at Church meetings and activities."

    That's patently not true. Either you are intentionally promoting a falsehood or you honestly don't know church policy. Children of SSM parents are not allowed to hold the priesthood until they turn 18 and formally denounce their parents relationship. That divides kids early and that's not conducive to good relationships.

  • Thomas Thompson Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 8:15 a.m.

    The author of the letter simply doesn't get it. Talking about suicide, at the very least, helps young people to know that they can actually do that instead of simply acting out the impulse at a time when they feel they (almost literally) have nowhere to go, and no one to talk to. Needless to say, however, except for the most benign discussions, a parent who finds his or her children in a crisis about this issue should also seek professional help immediately.

  • "Hakuna Matata" Vernal, UT
    Jan. 26, 2018 4:13 a.m.

    Honesty, love, tolerance, family support and open communications are critical here and they go a long way in making sure that the kids wouldn't even entertain the idea of committing suicide. It's a cruel world out there and they need to know that they will always be truly loved and supported by family members and friends.

  • cthulhu_fhtagn Seattle, WA
    Jan. 26, 2018 12:31 a.m.

    If we don't talk about it, it'll fix itself. That strategy has never failed....

  • Fact Check Pleasant Grove, UT
    Jan. 25, 2018 10:23 p.m.


    The Church loves and respects children living with a same-gender couple, and welcomes them at Church meetings and activities.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Jan. 25, 2018 6:42 p.m.

    How about the dominate religion stop excluding kids of gay parents to participate in church activities? Shunning is a major factor in youth suicide.