Why it is brave to let someone know you are hurting

You will not burden us by speaking up, by telling us how you feel, or asking for help


By MJH in Boulder, 7 years in EMS

To the emergency worker thinking about taking your life … I am here for you. 

There is a reason that in this industry we all call ourselves brothers and sisters. We are all here for each other, because family is the most important. And you are family.

I know you feel lonely, like no one cares, like no one knows what you are feeling, what you have seen, or what you have done. This is why we are family, because we all know what it feels like, we have all seen what you have seen, and we have all done what you have done. 

We understand and can relate to you like few outside of our profession can, and for that, we will always be here for you, and we will always care about you. We are many, and to think that you are alone in a time of need is not true.

There are thousands of us around the country … your family, all wanting to help you through this, but you need to ask.

We can’t help if we never know how you feel. It is not brave to keep everything inside; it is brave to speak up, to let someone know you are hurting, so we can be there for you.

You will not burden us by speaking up, by telling us how you feel, or asking for help. You would burden us by not speaking up, because if you take your life, we would all think it's our fault, that we could have done something to help, that we should have known you were hurting and just didn’t pay enough attention when it could have counted. This is the burden that we would struggle with.

We all love you, even if we have never met you. Every one of us would jump at the chance to help you, a member of our family, if we only knew you needed it. You see, it would be incredibly painful for us to lose you, as it is for every death within our family.

Even for those of us that have never met you, we will grieve. You have an enormous family across the nation, and the world that all want to see you be the best you can be, and succeed in life.

Please talk to us, let us know how you are feeling, what you need and we will be there for you. I promise.

About the author

The Code Green Campaign calls a 'code alert' on the mental health of EMTs and paramedics by breaking the silence about mental illness in EMS by sharing the stories of those who have been there. The Code Green Campaign has selected this story and we are glad to share it with EMS1 readers. Learn more about the Code Green Campaign.

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