According to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline for every person who commits suicide, 280 others who actually think about it don’t end up following through.
It’s unclear what pushes a person to follow through and go from merely just thinking about it to actually planning an attempt, but having people to talk and connect with can help keep someone alive. We can all play in important role in saving a life, and paying attention is extremely important.
Suicide Warning Signs
- Social Isolation Loneliness and withdrawal.
- Chronic Disease
- Drug and Alcohol Abuse
- Access to lethal weapons
- No Access to health care
- Traumatic life event (death in the family, divorce, etc..)
- Prior Attempts
- Existing mental health issues
- Financial problems
- Talking about suicide
- Feeling hopeless
- Change in sleeping patterns. Too much or too little.
- Mood swings
- Reckless Behavior
If you notice a change and any of these signs you should take action; or if unable to, notify someone who’s close enough that can. The most important thing to know here is, if you’re worried, then you should trust your gut.
Things You Can Do To Deter A Suicide
Ask them out to coffee and just ask. It shows the person you care and are open to speaking about it without judgement. Listen to them actively without minimizing their feelings. Less is more. Focus on their value instead of debating moral implications of suicide
2) Be There
Genuinely call them, text them, email them, ask them out frequently. Stop by randomly with a meal. Go to a movie. Minimize their loneliness and social isolation. Keep listening and asking questions. If you notice the situation is getting worse and they’ve revealed a plan of some sort try to remove any lethal means and seek professional help locally or call the National Suicide Lifeline at 800-273-8255
3) Follow Up
It’s easy to let life get in the middle of a crucial process like helping a friend or family member through this rough patch. But don’t stop, keep following up with them. And don’t take anything they say personally. Just keep listening and asking questions.
Resources To Get Help
Local – PsychologyToday.com – Search for a therapist who you think they’ll click with and one who specializes in depression issues. Finding a therapist who can run a battery of psychological tests can also help in diagnosing any underlying disorders.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – 800-273-8255
Feel free to reach out to us or any of these sources yourself and ask how you can help. We are conveniently located in Clarkston, a suburban city in Northern Oakland County, Michigan.