ANTIDEPRESSANTS: Suicide Numbers Are Soaring! Suicide: Georgia

Paragraph eight reads: “Billy saw a psychologist. He was taking
prescription antidepressants and attended meetings of a support group. In the end,
it wasn’t enough and Billy took his life.”

Published Saturday, April 24, 2010 in Local

Coweta suicide numbers soaring
By Alex McRae

The Times-Herald

Suicides are rarely reported in the news. But a local couple says if they
were, headlines would have been far too frequent in recent months.

Husband and wife Lynn and Nancy Bradley founded the Coweta chapter of the
Survivors of Suicide group in 1997. For 13 years they have helped countless
people deal with the personal anguish and pain that follows the loss of a
loved one to suicide.

The Bradleys say that federal Centers for Disease Control figures show
that for years Coweta has averaged about 11 suicide deaths annually. But
according to anecdotal reports from friends and associates in the health care
and law enforcement communities, the Bradleys believe that number has
skyrocketed in recent months. They have been told there have been 15 suicides in
Coweta since Jan. 1, and that almost a dozen suicides occurred in November
and December 2009.

“The poor economy has certainly led to a lot of anxiety and depression,”
Lynn Bradley says. “But there are other factors involved, too. No one really
knows why suicides seem to be increasing right now, and we don’t have the
answer. We just want people to know that if you are a friend or loved one
of someone who has committed suicide, there is help out there to deal with
your grief.”

The Bradleys became involved with the SOS support group not long after the
suicide death of Nancy’s brother, Billy, in December 1996.

Billy had been struggling and the family knew he was depressed and

“He mentioned suicide once,” Nancy says. “But we didn’t know what to do
and it looked like he was dealing with things, like he was taking the right

Billy saw a psychologist. He was taking prescription antidepressants and
attended meetings of a support group. In the end, it wasn’t enough and Billy
took his life.

As is often the case, family members blamed themselves. Nancy took it

“He was my baby brother and the youngest of eight kids,” Nancy says. “I
felt like it had always been my duty to take care of him. I felt like I had

As they started to deal with their grief, the Bradleys sought assistance
and found Survivors of Suicide. The closest group was in Henry County, and
Nancy and Lynn attended their first meeting in February 1997.

Everyone in attendance had a different story. But they all had the same


“That’s what everyone wants to know,” Nancy says. “Sadly, it’s a question
that usually doesn’t get answered.”

After attending several meetings in Henry County, Nancy and Lynn felt a
glimmer of hope.

“The more we got involved the better things got,” Nancy says. “Hearing the
others talk I realized I could get through it, but I realized you can’t do
it alone.”

The Bradleys also felt there was a similar need in Coweta County and
talked of forming a local SOS group. At the same time, a friend of the Bradleys
who had lost his wife to suicide was looking for help. Out of the blue, the
friend contacted the Bradleys and they talked.

In August 1997, the Coweta chapter of Survivors of Suicide had its first

“I felt like something good had to come out of my brother’s death,” Nancy
says. “And I thought this might be it.”

The Coweta SOS group only works with survivors of suicide, but the local
meetings have also been attended by people who have attempted suicide and
failed. The Bradleys say coming to a meeting often gives them a new
perspective on the consequences of their actions.

“When they see the impact of a suicide on the surviving family members, it
really changes their attitude,” Nancy says. “People don’t realize how
devastating a suicide is for those left behind.”

Meetings of the local SOS group are held the second Monday of each month
from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Crossroads Church main building at 2564 Highway 154.
Those interested in more information about meetings may call the church
office at 770-254-0291. The local SOS group operates under the auspices of
Crossroads Church’s care and counseling ministry, led by Dr. John Hobbs.

Those who attend may talk or listen.

“We see lots of tears and some anger and some guilt,” Nancy says. “But
some people just want to sit quietly and listen. That’s fine, too.”

The Bradleys have heard tales of tragedy ranging from the suicide death of
an 11-year-old child to the story of a woman whose husband and two sons
all committed suicide within 18 months of each other.

“All the stories are heartbreaking,” Nancy says. “We are there to offer
hope and I think people who attend the meetings realize that.”

Lynn says the key is finding help early.

“If we can get to people early they can share their feelings in a safe,
supportive atmosphere,” he says.

The Bradleys say common themes about the causes of suicide emerge at each

“There is usually a loss of self worth,” Lynn says. “People who lose their
jobs lose their self-esteem. We are also hearing about more and more
people who are depressed because of medical issues.”

Lynn Bradley says potential suicide victims have three things in common:
Feelings of helplessness, feelings of hopelessness and feelings of

“They know something is wrong,” he says. “They just don’t know what to do
or where to go. We can help.”

Lynn and Nancy Bradley are qualified lay counselors and have undergone
training at the Link Counseling Center, but they are not professional
psychologists and are quick to point those in need to skilled professionals.

“If someone needs professional help, we make sure to help them contact the
right person,” Nancy says.

The SOS group deals with survivors of suicide, but sometimes receives
calls from people who are troubled and may be contemplating suicide. They are
often referred to the Suicide Prevention Action Network of Georgia (SPAN),
which can be contacted at

Lynn and Nancy Bradley are available day and night for anyone seeking help
and can be reached at 770-251-6216. They encourage anyone coping with a
suicide to contact them.

“Some are just scared to admit they have a problem,” Nancy says. “We try
and show them that getting help is not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of

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ANTIDEPRESSANTS: 42% of suicides in One Indiana County Were on Antidepressants

NOTE FROM Ann Blake-Tracy (
Note the title of this article and how they are blaming increased
suicide with the economy. The economy does increase suicide in several ways but
the two most common denominators in the economy doing this is that these drugs
are more often prescribed due to depression being more common with a poor
economy and people already on antidepressants not being able to keep up their
insurance so that they can afford the drugs thus forcing people into abrupt
withdrawal. The FDA has already warned that abrupt withdrawal from an
antidepressant can produce suicide, hostility or psychosis.
How, how, how can there be such a high rate of suicide
associated with the use of antidepressants and the article STILL complain that
people have a stigma about “getting help” which in their terms means getting
drugged with an antidepressant?! Oh yes, and we are suppose to believe that
counseling is supposed to help that be less fatal.
These drugs have been shown over and over again to increase
the rate of suicide. But as Hitler said, if you tell a lie often enough people
will believe it. Drug companies have that practice perfected. They will tell you
that black is white and day is night all day long.
Although the report shows a high rate of suicide (42%)
associated with antidepressant use, what is NOT addressed is how many had
recently been taking antidepressants and were in withdrawal which can cause
additional suicidal risks.
Second paragraph from the end reads:  “Of the 17
deaths in the first half of 2009, seven people were taking antidepressant
, but only one was seeing a counselor. Chappell and Groves
said studies show doing both works best.”

SSRI Stories note:  So

forty-two percent of the people who committed suicide were taking
an antidepressant.  This is an exceedingly high

Economy-related suicides up

Groves: Overall numbers consistent with 2008

  • By Gavin

  • Posted September 7, 2009 at 11:40 p.m. , updated September 8, 2009 at 9:35
Source: Vanderburgh County Coroner’s Office

Vanderburgh County had the same number of suicides through the first half of

this year as it did in the first six months of 2008, though officials say there
has been a marked increase in self-inflicted deaths tied to the faltering

Of the 17 suicides reported through June 30, six of them
occurred after the person lost his job.

That compares with only one

job-related suicide in the first half of 2008.

Coroner Annie Groves
called it a big concern, especially given the recent news that Whirlpool will
shut down next year, taking 1,100 jobs with it. “When you lose your job, you
lose your home, you lose hope,” Groves said. “That worries me with this

The coroner’s office recently released data on suicides in
advance of Suicide Awareness and Prevention Week, which continues through
Saturday in Evansville. It ends with the LifeSavers Walk, an annual event that
raises awareness and funds for addressing the suicide problem. Registration
starts at 8 a.m. Saturday at the Evansville State Hospital, 3400 Lincoln

Local efforts toward combating suicides grew in 2007, when
Vanderburgh County ended the year with a record 40 self-inflicted deaths.

The numbers went down slightly in 2008, when 38 were reported by year’s
end, and are on pace this year to finish down again.

In addition to the
increase in job-related suicides, Groves said there also has been a steady
increase in self-inflicted deaths by people ages 20 to 39. There were 11 such
deaths in the first six months of the year compared with just five during that
span last year, 14 in all of 2008 and 16 in all of 2007.

“That’s an area
I’m very concerned about,” Groves said. “… It used to be 50 to 59 was our
higher ones.”

The 17 deaths recorded through the end of June include only
confirmed suicides.

Groves said there likely are six more suicides among
14 cases officially ruled accidental overdoses, but that a lack of hard evidence
prevents her from ruling those deaths intentional.

But on another front,
the numbers could be construed as artificially high: The 17 self-inflicted
deaths include seven people who committed a suicidal act in another county but
died here after being airlifted to an Evansville hospital.

In any event,
Groves said seeing the numbers come down from the record-setting 2007 figures is
a good sign.

She credits the dip with multiple prevention efforts: the
walk, frequent classes that teach the signs and symptoms of suicide and
brochures and billboards that increase awareness.

“We’re so busy focusing

on how many we’ve lost, we sometimes forget to focus on how many we’ve saved,”
Groves said.

Janie Chappell, chairwoman of the Southwestern Indiana
Suicide Prevention Coalition, said awareness efforts increasingly will focus on
encouraging people suffering from depression to seek medication and

Of the 17 deaths in the first half of 2009, seven people were

taking antidepressant medication, but only one was seeing a counselor. Chappell
and Groves said studies show doing both works best.

“But there’s still so
much stigma surrounding mental health, people are reluctant to get help,”
Chappell said.

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