This. Is. Huge.
The FCC is moving forward w plans to make “988” the nation’s suicide prevention line as the EPIDEMIC of suicides in our country reaches its highest levels since WW2!
Why is this huge – 2 main reasons as I see it (though of course there are many more):
1) An easy to remember #, so that anyone struggling can pick up the phone & dial right away to get help. When I felt my own strong ideations about pill bottles in front of me, I was fortunate that I had my family to speak to, to bring me to the hospital & get me the help I needed. I knew my thoughts were error messages but I couldn’t control them. For those not lucky enough to have friends or fam nearby at the time of the ideations, having a quick dial number is HUGE.
2) I think this may be as or even MORE important than the above, is what this # will do for changing perception of suicide in our country/society. Every kid grows up in the US & is taught the easy # of 911 in case of emergencies. We don’t question that #. We just know to call it when we need serious help. Same applies here w 988. Kids will be taught this from a young age. The conversation therefore will start at a young age. The topic will therefore be normalized at a young age. I think it’s very important that this # is not some long form acronym for HELP or CRISIS. Instead, this # is simple, sounds similar to 911, & will become “OK” for folks to use when IN crisis, bc of the above factors. This. Is. Huge.