How to deal with someone who is suicidal
Offer non-judgmental, non-accusatory support and listen with an open mind that invites closeness. They may be able to report behavioral changes, especially if the patient is uncertain when it started or how it looks to others. Set up a comfortable environment in a non-threatening place to have a conversation about your concerns.
Helping A Friend Or Family Member Who Is Suicidal
I have been feeling concerned about you lately. Recently, I have noticed some differences in you and wondered how you are doing. I wanted to check in with you because you haven't seemed yourself lately. Questions you can ask: When did you begin feeling like this?
Did something happen that made you start feeling this way? How can I best support you right now? Have you thought about getting help? What you can say that helps: You are not alone in this.
I'm here for you. You may not believe it now, but the way you're feeling will change. I may not be able to understand exactly how you feel, but I care about you and want to help. When you want to give up, tell yourself you will hold off for just one more day, hour, minute — whatever you can manage. When talking to a suicidal person Do: The following questions can help you assess the immediate risk for suicide: Do you have a suicide plan?
PLAN Do you have what you need to carry out your plan pills, gun, etc. Helping a suicidal person: Do everything in your power to get a suicidal person the help he or she needs. Call a crisis line for advice and referrals. Encourage the person to see a mental health professional, help locate a treatment facility, or take them to a doctor's appointment.
If the doctor prescribes medication, make sure your friend or loved one takes it as directed. Be aware of possible side effects and be sure to notify the physician if the person seems to be getting worse. It often takes time and persistence to find the medication or therapy that's right for a particular person.
Those contemplating suicide often don't believe they can be helped, so you may have to be more proactive at offering assistance.
Saying, "Call me if you need anything" is too vague. Don't wait for the person to call you or even to return your calls. Drop by, call again, with the person out. Encourage positive lifestyle changes, such as a healthy diet, deal of sleep, and getting out in the sun or into nature for at least 30 minutes each day.
Exercise is also extremely important as it releases endorphins, relieves stress, and promotes suicidal well-being. Make a safety plan. Help the person develop a set of steps he or she promises to follow during a suicidal crisis.
It should identify any triggers that may lead to a suicidal crisis, such as an anniversary of a loss, alcohol, or stress from relationships. Studies of suicide victims have shown that how than half had sought medical help in the six months prior to someone deaths.
You don't give a suicidal person morbid ideas by talking about suicide. The opposite is true—bringing up the subject of suicide and discussing it openly is one of the most helpful things you can do. Take any suicidal talk or behavior seriously. It's not just a warning sign that the person is thinking about suicide— it's a cry for help. Most suicidal individuals give warning signs or signals of their intentions. The best way to prevent suicide is to recognize these warning signs and know how to respond if you spot them. If you believe that a friend or family who is suicidal, you can play a role in suicide prevention by pointing out the alternatives, showing that you care, and getting a doctor or psychologist involved.
Major warning signs for suicide include talking about killing or harming oneself, talking or writing a lot about death or dying, and seeking out things that could be used in a suicide attempt, such as weapons and drugs. These signals are even more dangerous if the person has a mood disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder, suffers from alcohol dependence, has previously attempted suicide, or has a family history of suicide.
A more subtle but equally dangerous warning sign of suicide is hopelessness. Studies have found that hopelessness is a strong predictor of suicide. People who feel hopeless may talk about "unbearable" feelings, predict a bleak future, and state that they have nothing to look forward to. Other warning signs that point to a suicidal mind frame include suicidal mood swings or sudden personality changes, such as going from outgoing to withdrawn or well-behaved to rebellious. A suicidal person may also lose interest in day-to-day activities, neglect his or her appearance, and show big changes in eating or sleeping habits.
Talking about suicide — Any talk about suicide, dying, or self-harm, such as "I wish I hadn't been born," "If I see you again Seeking out lethal means — Seeking access to guns, pills, knives, or other objects that could be used in a suicide attempt. Preoccupation with death — Unusual focus on death, dying, or violence. Writing poems or stories about death. No hope for the future — Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and being trapped "There's no way out".
Belief that things will never get better or change. Self-loathing, self-hatred — Feelings of worthlessness, guilt, shame, and self-hatred. Feeling like a burden "Everyone would be better off without me". Getting affairs in order — Making out a will. Giving away prized possessions. Making arrangements for family members. Saying goodbye — Unusual or unexpected visits or calls to family and friends.
Saying goodbye to people as if they won't be seen again. Withdrawing from others — Withdrawing from friends and family.
Desire to be left alone. Self-destructive behavior — Increased alcohol or drug use, reckless driving, unsafe sex. Taking unnecessary risks as if they have a "death with. Sudden sense of calm — A sudden sense of calm and happiness after being extremely depressed can mean that the person has made a decision to attempt suicide.
What if the person gets angry? In such situations, it's natural to feel uncomfortable or afraid. But anyone who talks about suicide or shows other warning signs needs immediate help—the sooner the how. Talking to a friend or family member about their suicidal thoughts and feelings can be extremely difficult for anyone. But if you're unsure whether someone is suicidal, the best way to find out is to ask.
You can't make a person suicidal by showing that you care. In fact, giving a suicidal person the opportunity to express his or her feelings can provide relief from loneliness and pent-up negative feelings, and may prevent a suicide attempt. The right words are often unimportant.
If you are concerned, your voice and manner will show it. Persistence and patience may be needed to seek, engage and continue with as many options as deal. In any referral situation, let the person know who care and want to maintain contact.
It is the part of the person that is afraid of more pain that says Don't tell anyone. It is the part that wants to stay alive that tells you about it.
Respond to that part of the person and persistently seek out a mature and compassionate person with whom you can review the situation. You can get outside help and still protect the person from pain causing breaches of privacy. Do not try to go it alone.
Get help for the person and for yourself. Distributing the anxieties and responsibilities of suicide prevention makes it easier and much more effective.
Nearly all suicidal people suffer from conditions that will pass with time or with the assistance of a recovery program. There are hundreds of modest steps we can take to improve our response to the suicidal and to make it easier for them to seek help. Taking these modest steps can save many lives and reduce a great deal of human suffering.
Click here for more common signs of someone who may be suicidal. The majority of the population at any one time does not have many of the warning signs and has a lower suicide risk rate. But a lower rate in a larger population is still a lot of people - and many completed suicides had only a few of the conditions listed above.
In a one person to another person situation, all indications of suicidality need to be taken seriously. Crisis intervention hotlines that accept calls from the suicidal, or anyone who wishes to discuss a problem, are in New York City The Samaritans at and Helpline at Read This First How serious is our condition? Why is it so hard for us to recover from being suicidal? Recovery from grief and loss for suicidal persons The stigma of suicide that keeps us from getting help Online depression resources for suicidal persons Handling a call from a suicidal person Nine ways to help a suicidal person; and Suicide Warning Signs.
This resource is hosted by mental health information at Psych Central. Don't rush them to make decisions or tell you things. Always be delicate in situations as serious as death. Try to understand what has driven them to this decision. Suicide is often accompanied by depression, which is an unimaginable emotional state for people who have never experienced it. Listen carefully and work to understand why they feel the way they do. Especially if you are a teen worrying about a friend or family member who appears to be contemplating suicide, please tell a trusted adult or call the hotline to get help for both of you right away.
This is a tremendous burden for you to carry alone, and it will only get worse if your friend ends up committing suicide despite any promises he or she might have made in response to your intervention. Listen to them and their problems. They need a listening ear. If the person is not in immediate danger, talking is the best option to help for the time-being. Don't try to tell them how to feel better, or give advice. Just be quiet and really listen.
Keep your friend talking. Cultivate an environment of understanding. Tell them how much you love them and that you would miss her if she were gone.
You are NOT alone!
Illnesses that can precipitate suicidal thoughts include depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, body dysmorphic disorder, psychosis, alcohol or drug abuse, etc. If you know the person suffers from one of these illnesses and he or she mentions suicide, get them help immediately. Warnings If you feel as though the person is in an emergency state of crisis, seek immediate help for them, even if they ask you not to.
Supporting someone who feels suicidal
LJ Leowsy Jerm Jul 22, A Anonymous May 5. This has really helped me and made me aware of the symptoms. I am concerned about my friend who's threatened to take their own life. AM Amber Milton Nov 11, I've know them for over a year, and this helped me talk to them. She's calming down as I type this. This may have saved a life.
How to Help a Suicidal Person
Thank you so much. A Anonymous Jul These steps helped a lot. A Anonymous Apr NQ Natalie Quiroz Aug 11, A Anonymous Feb