New Suicide Prevention Number Could Lead to Surge in Calls

Brian Anderson

Editor’s note: If you or someone you know needs help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255.

ATLANTA — Brian Anderson, an imposing man with a rich baritone voice, dwarfs his office chair at the Georgia Crisis and Access Line. He talks softly about the first time he tried to end his life.

It was a collect call to his father from a pay phone in Hoboken, New Jersey, that saved him, he said. “I’d made up my mind that my life was over, and I wanted my father to pray for my soul. I told him, ‘Don’t pray for me, that person is finished – pray for my soul.’ I’d already suffered enough in this life, I didn’t want to suffer more in the afterlife.”

Anderson made the call in 1984, when he was 19, after he’d taken fistfuls of drugs to end his pain, he said. He made another attempt to end his life seven years later, before mental health treatment helped him recover.

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Vestal, C. (2019, December 20). New Suicide Prevention Number Could Lead to Surge in Calls.