What can you do when you are concerned about someone?
Thanks to stopasuicide.org for the information summarized below, download entire document here.
Have you heard someone say:
- Life isn’t worth living
- My family would be better off without me
- Next time I’ll take enough pills to do the job right
- Take my (prized collection, valuables)–I don’t need this stuff anymore
- I won’t be around to deal with that
- You’ll be sorry when I’m gone
- I won’t be in your way much longer
- I just can’t deal with everything–life’s too hard
- Nobody understands me–nobody feels the way I do
- There’s nothing I can do to make it better
- I’d be better off dead
- I feel like there is no way out
Have you observed:
- Getting affairs in order (paying off debts, changing a will)
- Giving away articles of either personal or monetary value
- Signs of planning a suicide such as obtaining a weapon or
- writing a suicide note
Have you noticed the following signs of depression:
- Depressed mood
- Change in sleeping patterns (too much/little, disturbances)
- Change in weight or appetite
- Speaking and/or moving with unusual speed or slowness
- Loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities
- Withdrawal from family and friends
- Fatigue or loss of energy
- Feelings of worthlessness, self-reproach, or guilt
- Thoughts of death, suicide, or wishes to be dead
If depression seems possible, have you also noticed:
- Extreme anxiety, agitation, or enraged behavior
- Excessive drug and/or alcohol use or abuse
- Neglect of physical health
- Feelings of hopelessness or desperation
What to look for — and what to do — if you are concerned about someone
- Do take it seriously. 70% of all people who commit suicide give some warning of their intentions to a friend or family member.
- Do be willing to listen. Even if professional help is needed, your friend or loved one will be more willingto seek help if you have listened to him or her.
- Do voice your concern. Take the initiative to ask what is troubling your friend, co-worker or loved one, and attempt to overcome any reluctance on their part to talk about it.
- Do get professional help immediately. If the person seems willing to accept treatment, do one of the following…Call 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) to find resources in your area. Bring him or her to a local emergency room or community mental health center. Your friend will be more likely to seek help if you accompany him or her. Contact his or her primary care physician or mental health provider. If the person seems unwilling to accept treatment…Call 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or a local emergency room for advice. and if all else fails… call 9-1-1.
What NOT To Do
- Don’t try to cheer the person up, or tell them to snap out of it.
- Don’t assume the situation will take care of itself.
- Don’t be sworn to secrecy.
- Don’t argue or debate moral issues.
- Don’t risk your personal safety. Just leave, and then call the police.