When someone is suicidal

When someone you know is suicidal it’s scary, but you can help them.  They need your love.  They need your compassion.  They need you there to hold on to the hope for their future when they can’t see it anymore.

You can do this.

Someone needs help right now

On behalf of your friend or family member, thank you.  It’s great to have someone who cares enough to look for help. If this is an emergency, find out their location in as much detail as possible and call 9-1-1 (in the U.S.; here’s a list for other countries). Know what to expect to make the call go as smoothly as possible. It’s okay to be scared – it’s normal.  Even after almost two decades in suicide prevention, it…


Are they thinking about suicide?

Thank you for picking up on the clues that something may be wrong.  Many times people just dismiss that feeling.  Your attention may help prevent a crisis from escalating. If you sense that something may be wrong.  Ask.  Are you thinking about suicide? or Are you thinking about killing yourself?  Research shows that asking such questions does not make people more suicidal.  It does put talking about suicide right out on the table, so always be prepared…


Are they at higher risk for suicide?

Maybe you’re a little concerned about someone, but you don’t think it is a crisis yet.  What should you be looking for? There has been a lot of research on what may be tied to suicide.  In research they are called “risk factors.” In general, the more risk factors someone has, the greater the chance that they may become suicidal.  The risk factors can be divided into short term and long term risk.  Long term risk can be…