Thinking about Suicide?
Taking serious someone's statement about wanting to kill themselves can be a matter of life and death...always get involved.
Talking about suicide can be difficult. But doing so can save lives.
Sometimes suffering from depression feels absolutely unbearable. Some people get to the point where life doesn’t seem worth living anymore. Suicidal thoughts aren’t really unusual, and they’re nothing to be ashamed of for certain. They’re a sign that it’s come time to talk to someone you trust and/or love.
Do you know of someone who needs help?
Many people don’t realize that depression is very treatable, and thus, never reach out for support from anyone. Many people who die by suicide also have a psychological or emotional disorder — depression being the most common. Other issues related to suicide are difficulties with relationships, substance abuse, physical health issues, and other life traumas and/or significant life-changing events.
If you know someone who might be thinking aboiut suicide, don’t wait until it’s too late — talk to them about their feelings now. All you can do is ask the tough questions, help them find professional support, and do your best to keep them out of harm's way. If you’re not sure how to stop them from hurting themselves, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline or dial 911.
Know the warning signs for suicide
The best way to help prevent suicide is to know what to look for — and be prepared to intervene if you think someone may be in danger. Warning signs include:
- Talking about a desire to be dead
- Looking for a way to hurt themselves, like searching online about suicide or buying poison
- Talking about feeling hopeless and that their life is not worth living anymore
- Talking about feeling trapped or in horrific pain
- Talking about being a heavy burden to others
- Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs
- Acting anxious or agitated, or acting out recklessly
- Sleeping too little or too excessively
- Withdrawing or isolating themselves
- Showing extreme rage or talking about seeking revenge on someone
- Having extreme mood swings throughout the day
5 steps to help someone in crisis
- Ask the uncomfortable and difficult question. When somebody you know is in emotional pain, ask them directly: “Are you thinking about killing yourself?”
- Keep them out of harm's way. Ask if they have a plan on how they would do it, and insulate them from anything they could use to hurt themselves. If you think they might be in immediate danger, call the local Suicide hotline or 911.
- Be there with them and listen to their reasons for feeling like their life is not worth living anymore. Listen with compassion and empathy and without dismissing or judging them.
- Help them connect to a support system — whether it’s family, friends, clergy, coaches, co-workers, a doctor, or a therapist — any professional that they can reach out to for help.
- You must follow up with them. Reaching out to them in the days and weeks after a crisis can make a meaningful difference — and even help save their life.
Get informed. Get involved. Even if you think you might be intruding upon someone's personal space, don't regret not taking any action before it's too late.
Reuben Geniesse, a certified Life Coach, and Psychotherapist. Trained as a Master's degreed clinical psychotherapist and certified as a Master Life Coach, Reuben brings over 35 years of experience working with children, adolescents, and adults. Reuben specializes in depression, anxiety, poor self-worth, low self-esteem, lack of passion or motivational drive, and negative consequences from trauma or significant life changes (i.e., divorce, business failure, effects from a pandemic - COVID-19, etc..). https://reubengeniesse-com6.webnode.com/