LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The holidays are usually the happiest time of the year, but for some, it can also be the hardest.
The "Holiday Blues" are often blamed for an increase in suicides this time of year, but as it turns out, that may not be true at all.
The Centers for Disease Control calls it a long-lasting myth that suicides tend to increase this time of year. In reality, there is no season and no reason science can explain why people choose to take their lives, and for those left behind, the holiday season can be even harder to handle.
"My dad was amazing. I can remember saying what I wanted to be when I grew up was a doctor and he would say Liz, I'll support you no matter what. You can do anything you set your mind to," said Elizabeth Morgan.
Morgan grew up in Fayetteville. Her father was Sean, a psychiatric nurse and one of her biggest role models.
'He actually dealt with depression and mental illness daily with his job," said Morgan.
As he helped his patients overcome their struggle's, Morgan's father faced one of his own.
"A year ago September. It's hard to be able to admit that happened to you because you hear about suicide, but you never really realize how regular it is, how often it affects people," said Morgan.
"Typically it happens all across the year and interestingly after the first of the year, suicide rates for men go up slightly," said Dr Howard Turney.
Turney said while some increases are seen in certain parts of the year, the question of why people choose to take their own lives still goes unanswered.
"I think it's been one of the mysteries of science for years and years. What is the final issue that would bring someone to that point that they would take their own life," said Turney.
Now Morgan is attending medical school at UAMS, her father's alma mater, hoping to one day help as many people as he did.
"This was his dream for me, and it was my dream, and he was so supportive of that and so I just-it's been very difficult to keep going, but he's the reason I keep going," said Morgan.
Morgan also attends a support group called Survivors of Suicide. Those that have lost loved ones come together once a month to help themselves and each other overcome their grief.
If you yourself are struggling with thoughts of suicide, there is help and it's just a phone call away. You can call Arkansas' Suicide Hotline number 1-888-CRISIS2 for help.