I am tired of hearing people accuse us of sensationalism or over-dramatization when we talk about lawyer suicide or the number of attorneys who suffer from substance abuse.
We have a problem in our profession. And it’s long since past time to pull our heads out of the sand.
Only 3 weeks into 2019 our local bar has lost one lawyer to suicide and another to substance abuse. In response to these recent losses , local trial lawyer, Jody McKnight, posted the following thoughtful comments on an attorney listserv.
We need more of this kind of reflection.
Let’s please take care of ourselves physically, mentally and spiritually… Let’s be less combative and more collaborative. When a trial lawyer (or anyone else in our circle) is suffering, monetarily or otherwise, reach out and sincerely ask what we can do to help; and if they decline, mark your calendar and follow up. We can’t let people get isolated and depressed, without help. We deal with such anxiety, guilt and shame in this legal culture…Let the spirits of love, forgiveness and gratitude overcome the spirits of guilt, shame, regret and fear. We need to let our words heal more and hurt less…
Remember, our value is much greater than what we can produce and achieve. Our value is our humanity and our place in the spiritual world…We are loved more than we know.
It’s so important for all of us to pause and remind ourselves of the truth Jody speaks.
Love is not a dirty word for lawyers. Let’s say it more and live it often.