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Farm Stress & Suicide Prevention

Program Contact: Alyssa Wade
alyssa.wade1@wsu.edu

Agriculture Can Be Stressful

You Are Not Alone

Agriculture is the backbone of our country and  although it’s often rewarding it can also come with many stressors. Being a steward of the land, grappling with unpredictable weather and enduring financial hardships can lead to excessive stress. Due to the stresses faced in agricultural, farmers and many living in rural farm communities have higher rates of suicide. You don’t have to face these hardships alone or without help. If you know someone who is experiencing overwhelming stress or thoughts of self harm please reach out to a confidential crisis support line.

CONFIDENTIAL SELF SCREENING

 

WSU and the Agricultural Suicide Prevention Program is not a crisis center.

If you are in need of immediate assistance, reach out to the National Suicide Prevention line, 1(800) 273-TALK (8255)

 

In our rural communities, we may know someone who has been affected by a suicide loss or who may be experiencing suicidal thoughts. Help promote awareness by sharing existing resources and social media posts.

 

A Message from the National Action Alliance on Suicide Prevention

Consider ways to encourage the public to be there for someone who might be struggling or in crisis. Some examples of how someone can #BeThere include:

  • Check in with a friend by phone or text message to see how they are doing.
  • Invite a friend to meet for coffee or to share a meal together.
  • Send a handwritten card to let someone know you are thinking of them.
  • Learn the risk factors and warning signs.
  • Help connect someone who is struggling to professional care.
  • Share the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Number (800-273-8255), which provides 24/7, free, and confidential support. For specialized care, military veterans may press ‘1.’ In addition, anyone can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741.

Signs and symptoms to look for when stress has begun to take an effect on you or someone you know:

  • Thoughts of hurting oneself
  • Care of Livestock Declines
  • Increase in Agriculture-Related Accidents
  • Appearance of Farmstead Declines
  • Children Show Signs of Stress

  • Lack of energy/motivation to do usual tasks
  • Loss of interest in favorite activities
  • Alcohol and/or substance abuse/addiction
  • Withdrawal from others
  • Relational tension

Agricultural communities including farmers, ranchers, farmworkers, and their families, continue to meet the demands and challenges this past year has brought. Many of us have experienced a crisis in the last year, or we are currently in a crisis. In times of crisis, stress can affect each member of the family differently.

John’s Story

Ellen’s Story

Johnny’s Story

Ed & Maria’s Story

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

Hard times can bring an inordinate amount of stress to you and your family. Farm Aid works with organizations around the country staffed with farm advocates, counselors and hotline operators that can help you in your time of greatest need. If you need someone to talk to, give us a call at 1-800-FARM-AID and we’ll do our best to direct you to someone who can help.

Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the United States, anytime. Crisis Text Line is here for any crisis. A live, trained Crisis Counselor receives the text and responds, all from our secure online platform. The volunteer Crisis Counselor will help you move from a hot moment to a cool moment.
WSU Agricultural Suicide Prevention Pilot Program is funded through the State of Washington, Department of Health under the provisions of House Bill 2671. If you would like to contribute to the work of raising awareness about excessive stress and suicide prevention in agriculture, please reach out to WSU Lincoln/Adams County Extension.

 

This webpage is also supported by the Western Region Agricultural Stress Assistance Program, funded by the USDA Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network, under agreement number: 2020-70028-32731 proposal number: 2020-07631.