I like the words SAD PERSONS to describe those more at risk for serious self-harm:
S: Sex, males more likely
A: Age, 25-54, increased risk for suicide and males above 75
P: Previous attempts
E: Ethanol, alcohol and drug abuse increase the risk
R: Rational thought loss –(“A voice told me to kill myself), people with schizophrenia are more likely to kill themselves
S: Social support loss; we are designed to be in relationship with others; loss of a spouse, or a parent (for a child) or even a boyfriend can lead to increasd risk. The solution to this is to increase one’s social support either by joining a support or therapy group or other type of healthy socializing and connection.
O: Organized Plan of suicide increases risk
N: No significant other–we are at our best when in healthy relationship with others.
S: Sickness, having a terminal illness
So, if someone you love is at risk, then what should you do?
Take it seriously
Remember: suicidal behavior is a cry for help.
Be willing to give and get help sooner rather than later.
Listen without judgment
Ask directly: Are you having thoughts of suicide? (asking does NOT make it more likely they will
If the person is acutely suicidal, don’t leave them alone, call 911 or take them to any hospital emergency room
No secrets about this: tell someone who can help
Urge professional help from a clinical psychologist or other licensed mental health professional
After the suicidal person receives help, consider finding your own place to talk about your feelings from the experience either with a trusted friend, counseling or a support or therapy group.
We belong in relationship..