Since the signing of the good Friday agreement in 1998, more people have died from suicide in the north of Ireland than died in ‘the troubles “.
That’s over 3,600 people. This great agreement, that was to be the start of a new beginning for us all , has sadly left a generation of broken dreams.
Why do our young people feel so disenfranchised in today’s society? Why can they see no futher? And most importantly, why are they turning to drugs to deal with everyday life?
Unfortunately I don’t have any answers. My friend and brother in law took his young life last week at the age of 23.
He had his whole life ahead of him. Why did he do it? We will never know. But what we do know, is that he battled with depression and later addiction. He has a loving and supportive family who tried their very best to get the help he required.
Unfortunately here in the north of Ireland the help available for people with mental health issues is under funded and to be honest our political parties don’t seem to rate it as a priority. They would rather waste our public money on things like the RHI and policing the marching season and argue about which flag is flown on civic buildings. And while they do this, 6 people a week are taking their own lives.
We need a political system that put the people first . Without our health and education our society will remain broken and will only get worse. But throwing money at our health services will only help if we address other issues like Drugs , both legal and illegal.abuse of prescription drugs are killing more people today than ever before.
Our young people are taking these drugs to escape from the reality of everyday life because they feel excluded. The peace process has failed the working classes miserably. The young people see no way out. I’ve lost count of how many young people here in North Belfast have taken their own lives and the abuse of tablets have been a mitigating factor.
I don’t have any answers. I’m just trying to highlight the fact that we are living in a broken society and it doesn’t look like anybody cares . Our young people keep leaving in coffins , and there is no end in sight.
Someone somewhere must be listening. to any young person reading this. If you feel your on a downward spiral please reach out to someone and talk. There is always a better way out of your darkness…