The Dutch LGBTQ+ community has been struggling with extremely high suicide rates for many years. To raise awareness on this issue, filmmakers Tim Dekkers and Henk Burger filmed and produced the documentary ‘Their Own Live’, which had its premiere in March.
According to figures from 113 Suicide Prevention The Netherlands, almost half of Dutch lesbian, gay and bisexual adults have had suicidal thoughts during their lifetime. This is five times more than in the general adult population. The number of people that actually attempt suicide is four to five times higher. For transgender people, the figures are even more shocking: five to ten times higher. Yet, within the rainbow community itself, the subject of suicide seems to be taboo.
Documentary filmmaker Tim Dekkers and screenwriter Henk Burger want to break this taboo with the gripping documentary ‘Their Own Life’ (‘Uit ‘t Leven’ in Dutch). For over two years, they followed three LGBTQ+ people who went through an inky black period.
Have acrobat Jean, model Solange, and city councillor Kris gotten their lives back on track for good? How do they aim to be a support and an example to others in mental distress? Or, does a possible relapse always lurk within them as well?
The filmmakers hope that as many people as possible get to see the film to slightly reduce the taboo on suicide. “People from the LGBTQ+ community should not only keep up appearances by partying and going on expensive holidays, but they should also learn to talk more about their feelings. This will save lives”, according to the filmmakers.