Lived Experience

From the very foundation or our agency, TSPN has made the effort to include people who have survived suicide attempts and/or struggled with suicidal ideation in our awareness and educational efforts. We strive to incorporate their insights into our outreach projects, resources, and public messaging. TSPN was several years ahead of the national suicide prevention movement in this regard.

With the establishment of the American Association of Suicidology’s Lived Experience/Suicide Attempt Survivors division in 2014, survivors of suicide attempts began taking a larger and more visible role in the effort to prevent suicide. As this movement and this part of our website develops, we plan to offer additional resources related to the lived experience movement and its unique perspective on suicide prevention.


Online Resources & Tools for Lived Experience and Suicide Attempt Survivors

Live Through ThisA collection of portraits and stories of suicide attempt survivors, as told by those survivors. The intention of Live Through This is to show that everyone is susceptible to depression and suicidal thoughts by sharing portraits and stories of real attempt survivors—people who look just like you. These feelings could affect your mom, your partner, or your brother, and the fear of talking about it can be a killer. Note: TSPN is a supporting partner in this project – we are always seeking volunteers to help transcribe the audio recordings of LTT interviews for the interviews to be posted. Please contact Samantha Nadler at [email protected] for more information on how to help.

Now Matters Now: Offers strategies to survive and build more manageable and meaningful lives – Mindfulness, Mindfulness of Current Emotion, Opposite Action and Paced-breathing. These skills are part of Dialectical Behavior Therapy or DBT, proven to be helpful for people considering suicide. This resource was designed by suicide prevention leaders who have experienced thoughts of suicide themselves.

Lifeline for Attempt Survivors: Developed by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, the website contains stories from attempt survivors who have made it through their darkest hour. Some of these stories and resources are also for families, friends, and clinicians who want to support people who are feeling suicidal and/or suicide attempt survivors.

Media for/by Lived Experience and Suicide Attempt Survivors

A Voice at the Table, a 35-minute documentary, began as a casual text conversation in June 2013. It gradually gained momentum over several months, almost a whispered voice at the table; or more to the point, a voice long missing from the suicide education and prevention table – the voice of the suicide attempt survivor. Where does that voice belong?

“Can You Hear Me Now? New voices of attempt survivors:” A panel at the AAS conference in 2014, featuring division members Dese’Rae Stage, Samantha Nadler, Misha Kessler and Craig Miller

From the creative team behind the award-winning OF TWO MINDS comes a new film that will tackle one of the most unfathomable and cloistered issues of our time… Suicide.