photo of Dese'Rae Stage

Dese'Rae Stage

Live Through This

Dese’Rae L. Stage is a Philadelphia-based artist, suicide awareness activist, and public speaker. She struggled with self-injury for nine years and survived a suicide attempt catalyzed by an emotionally and physically abusive relationship. These experiences, coupled with the loss of friends to suicide and the lack of resources for attempt survivors, prompted her to create Live Through This.

Live Through This is a collection of portraits and true stories of 180 suicide attempt survivors in 33 cities across the United States. Live Through This re-imbues the topic of suicide with humanity by putting faces and names to the statistics that have been the only representation of attempt survivors in the past.

Dese'Rae speaks at universities and conferences nationwide. She provided commentary for The Glenn Beck Program, Fox News, and BBC Radio. Her writing was published by Cosmopolitan, Huffington Post, and XoJane. In January 2017, she received a SXSW Community Service award, the American Association of Suicidology’s inaugural Transforming Lived Experience Award, and received Investigation Discovery’s Every Day Hero award. Live Through This has received extensive media coverage, including features in the New York Times, Associated Press, NPR, and more. Dese’Rae is featured in an upcoming documentary about suicide prevention advocates called “The S Word,” due out later this year.

You can see more of Dese’Rae’s work at

Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.

Events featuring Dese'Rae Stage
Events featuring Dese'Rae Stage