A depressed or suicidal person may not ask for help, but that doesn't mean that help isn't wanted. People who take their lives don't want to die—they just want to stop hurting. Suicide prevention starts with recognizing the warning signs and taking them seriously.
If you think a friend or family member is considering suicide, you might be afraid to bring up the subject. But talking openly about suicidal thoughts and feelings can save a life.
Here are some steps that can help you be that initial line of support for someone in need.
Listen. Suicidal people frequently feel no one understands them, that they are not taken seriously, or that no one listens to them.
Accept the person’s feelings as they are. Be non-judgmental. Do not debate or tell them they should feel differently, or try to cheer the person up by making positive, unrealistic statements.
Ask them if they have developed a plan for suicide. The presence of a well-developed plan indicates more serious intent. Therefore, you should make sure immediate steps are taken to ensure their safety.
Remove the means of self-harm and anything dangerous from the person’s home that might be used in a suicide attempt (e.g., gun, knife, razor blades, sleeping pills).
Express your concern for the person and your hope that the person will not choose suicide but instead will stick it out a little longer.
Remind the person that depressed feelings do change over time. Make sure you are available if they would like to talk.
Point out that death is final—it cannot be changed. As long as there is life, there are possibilities.
Develop a plan for help with the person. If you cannot develop a plan and a suicide attempt is imminent, seek outside emergency help from a suicide hotline, hospital or mental health clinic. Some of the numbers you can call for initial support are;
If you would like more information, please visit us on our “LIVE – Because it’s worth it” suicide prevention campaign:
Every life is important so let us work together to make a change!
This blog showcase stories, experiences and poems of brave individuals who were willing to share their creative personal thoughts in the hopes of helping another one in need...