Back from the Edge

Listen 54:14
Man giving hand to depressed woman


Suicide is a tough topic — it can feel frightening, and sad, and hard to talk about — but it’s also one we can’t afford to ignore. Over the past 20 years, America’s suicide rate has increased by more than a third, and it now ranks as the 10th leading cause of death nationwide. So what do we know about suicide and how to prevent it? On this episode, The Pulse explores the mystery of suicide — what brings people to the edge, and how we might bring them back. We hear stories about the Suicide Prevention Lifeline — and whether it works; how families deal with losing loved ones, and therapists who have lost clients; and the suicide attempt that changed the course of one man’s life.

Also heard on this week’s episode:

  • Suicide intervention expert Jonathan Singer explains why most of his work is really about hope. We talk about suicide prevention and risk factors. He is the host of the Social Work podcast, and a professor of Social Work at Loyola University Chicago.
  • Yolonda Johnson-Young talks about her son, Elijah who died by suicide in 2017. She made a film about him and the aftermath of his death called “Finding Elijah.”
  • Suicide attempt survivor Kevin Hines talks about his message of hope for others who are struggling with suicidal ideation

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

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