If you are concerned about someone you know that they are potentially suicidal, or they have expressed such things and asked you to promise to keep it a secret you should never agree to that. It is better for them to be angry for a time that you sought help and told others your concerns, but then they are still alive. Always be compassionate and respectful towards anyone who talks about such things and consider connecting with a suicide prevention charity that might be able to help. Having support is the best way to have success and prevent the worse from happening.

What to ask and say when someone talks to you about suicide

When someone is having suicidal thoughts it can be a great relief to have someone who just listens to them. Sometimes that is enough of an ‘intervention’ so that they do not follow through with it. Suicide prevention training is a good way to learn what you can do to stop it but for some questions you can ask them when they talk look below. Remember to stay non-judgemental, show you care, listen rather than interrupt and validate them.

  • Are you sleeping okay?
  • Have your tried to commit suicide before?
  • Are you thinking of committing suicide?
  • Is there someone I can contact that you feel safe with?
  • Do you feel like you are a burden to people?
  • Have you been drinking too much or taking drugs?
  • Do you need a safe space to hang out?
  • Are you feeling isolated or lonely?
  • Have you had someone close to you die recently?
  • Do you feel like you are being left out or ignored?
  • Do you feel like you are trapped?
  • Have you got the thing you intend to kill yourself with, rope, gun, pills?
  • Are you feeling very anxious?
  • Is there anyone else you like spending time with?

Tips for people who have someone that is suicidal

If you are living with or know someone who seems to be depressed, has expressed suicidal thoughts, has dramatic mood swimgs, is not as in touch with reality anymore or have their work or school attendance and performance dropping, then here are some tips on how to be the most helpful. Also consider talking to a suicide prevention charity for help.

  • Do not judge them and try to be empathic to their feelings
  • Take seriously all attempts and threats
  • Try not to use cliches when you talk with them
  • Do not try to debate with them about their issues
  • Be aware of the warning signs
  • Consider suicide prevention training
  • Be direct with your questions about method, timeline and plans
  • Do not minimize what they are feeling
  • Do not agree to keeping it a secret
  • Seek the support of professionals
  • Ask if you can help in anyway
  • Include people from their network in a plan on how to help
  • Do not leave them alone if the timeline is now and remove obvious methods such as ropes and pills
Author's Bio: 

This Article penned by Lora Davis.