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One Word. Many Lives.

The S Word

Increasing awareness through a documentary, ‘The S Word’ touches on the subject of suicide

By: Amelia Cooper

“It’s not the word suicide that is the problem, it is the deafening silence around it,” said Lisa Klein, the director of ‘The S Word.’  

Brought to you by UNK’s Women’s Center, Residence Life and the Gender Inclusive Living Learning Community, ‘The S Word’ will be shown on Jan. 30 at 6:30 p.m. in the NSU Ponderosa Room.

‘The S Word’ is a documentary that follows a suicide survivor, director Lisa Klein, through a mission to find others in the same situation. Along her journey, she finds a way to turn her struggles into action through national suicide awareness movements.

This documentary gives insight into the tenth leading cause of death in the United States, suicide. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “In 2016, nearly 45,000 Americans age 10 or older died by suicide.” The CDC also states that, “more than half the people who died by suicide did not have a known mental health condition.”

On the official documentary website,, Klein explains what her motivation was for this documentary. After being around suicide cases as a child and attempting suicide herself, she sought out other suicide survivors and saw that suicide was something that wasn’t openly talked about.

Klein started projects to increase suicide awareness, including ‘The S Word’ and a photography project called “Live Through This” where she photographs and documents survivor stories. 

From college campuses to conventions, this documentary is being screened to raise suicide awareness all across the country through the stories of survivors.

“It’s a project about suicide, but I’m focusing on life,” said Klein in the trailer for ‘The S Word.’

If you or anyone you know is suicidal, contact the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or at

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