Part 2 of Giggle On’s Suicide Awareness and Survivor Support series outlines what to do if someone is threatening suicide.
Giggle On! does not provide direct suicide hotline support; rather, we are a bridge to bring information to you.
IF YOU ARE THINKING ABOUT SUICIDE…READ THIS FIRST!
For survivors like you and me, hindsight is 20/20. We can’t go back and change the past. We can learn from our experiences and help prevent future loss of life.
How do I Help a Suicidal Person?
If someone you know is threatening to end it all, the American Association of Suicidology suggest:
- Be direct. Talk openly and matter-of-factly about suicide.
- Be willing to listen. Allow expressions of feelings. Accept the feelings.
- Be non-judgmental. Don’t debate whether suicide is right or wrong, or whether feelings are good or bad. Don’t lecture on the value of life.
- Get involved. Become available. Show interest and support.
- Don’t dare him or her to do it.
- Don’t act shocked. This will put distance between you.
- Offer hope that alternatives are available but do not offer glib reassurance.
- Take action. Remove means, such as guns or stockpiled pills.
- Get help from persons or agencies specializing in crisis intervention and suicide prevention.
You can’t change the past but you can learn from it…
The suggestions made by the American Association of Suicidology are sound but I must add, don’t go beating yourself up about what happened yesterday. You can’t change the past. You can choose to enjoy the present.
In retrospect, I made two major mistakes with Jim and should have taken the gun and asked for help from a suicide prevention agency. I may have lost his trust as a friend, but perhaps he would still be alive today. No one will ever know. I have moved on and I forgive myself (mostly – it takes time).
As hard as it is for me to write this, our loved ones made a choice. They made a forever decision to end their pain. All the begging, bartering and praying won’t change that fact. I know. I tried. Jim hasn’t come back to life.
Live well and laugh everyday
I am a very spiritual person. I believe Jim’s spirit is alive and well. It is my belief that your friend or loved one is alive and well too, in spirit. They are probably looking over your shoulder right now as you read this. They are whispering in your ear and speaking to your heart and saying, “I love you. Please forgive me for causing you pain. I am ok. Please live well and laugh everyday.”
Souls who passed by way of suicide do not want us to suffer for one more nanosecond about their death. Mark my words on that! In my opinion, they want us live life to the fullest, laugh heartily and spread messages of hope to others.
Take what you’ve learned from your loss and find the strength inside you (I know it’s there, I can see it) to move forward and Giggle On!
Don’t Give Up!…Giggle On! – pass the word.