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December 2017

My Podcast Debut + Happy New Year To You!

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Ruth Golden #349

December 26 was a milestone day for The Silent Goldens documentary and for me, Ruth Golden, as I had my podcast debut on What Matters Most with Paul Samuel Dolman. We discussed suicide loss and my film about its aftermath in my family. My BFF-across-the-street-neighbor and birthday twin, Eva Whittemore Lowry, is a mutual friend who connected us and I was honored to do it and hope it was the first of many opportunities to come!

As the year comes to a close, I am stunned by how far The Silent Goldens project has come since this time last year. The process has at times seemed very slow but I realize how much perspective and insight I’ve gained through experiences over that time and it’s hard to believe it’s only been a year. I am grateful for an incredible network of friends who have helped me in such a variety of ways this year allowing me to take the time to do this thing right.

My resolution is to stay on course. I hope to be filming by spring and am actively fundraising through the donate button on my website or just click here. We would be happy to help take some last-minute tax-deductible dollars off your hands! All the info is on the site!**

I thank all of you for your support of the project and the cause and wish everyone a peaceful New Year with love, laughter, healing, and hope.

A toast to 2018!


**Note: Once I am notified of a donation, I will contact people directly to get information about memorializing someone with their contribution.

Don’t “Commit Suicide”

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I was watching It’s a Wonderful Life last night.  Clarence and George discussed committing suicide.  Since my film project and web page revolve around the topic of suicide, and my mission is to encourage people to speak about it, I plan to share some tips I’ve learned along the way to help keep conversations productive.

The phrase “commit suicide” has fallen out of favor as it connotes a criminal act. The preferred terms now are now grammatically appropriate versions of “died by suicide,” “took their life,” or “killed themselves.”

Research shows that over 90% of people who die this way have an active mental illness at the time of death (short term, long term, situational, undiagnosed, diagnosed. (1)  We don’t refer to people who die of physical illnesses as having “committed cancer” or “committed heart failure.”

I only learned this information about the language two years ago and I still have a hard time not using the old-school phrase.  Usually it comes out when I am in the middle of telling my own story because since 1985 my narrative used “committed suicide” to describe my mother’s death.  I find, however, when I do public speaking or give a presentation for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, I will use the new preferred language.  So just being aware does actually help shift a person’s language, which, in turn, reduces the stigma and shame surrounding suicide.  It’s a process, but if you’ve read this, you will now likely notice how often the phrase pops up in sit-coms, news resources, books, jokes, etc.

Use your words for good.