Suicide

Suicide Risk Factors graphic from psychalive.org

Suicide Risk Factors graphic from http://www.psychalive.org/2011/09/suicide-prevention-advice-2/

No matter what problems you are struggling with, hurting yourself isn’t the answer. Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) to talk to a counselor at a Lifeline crisis center near you. (http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/)

The season from Thanksgiving to New Years has the highest rate of suicide in the entire year. People who have lost a loved one feel that loss with special severity during these holidays even of it has been a few years since the loss. Returning Warriors, people suffering financial resource starvation, the homeless, and those with special medical needs and addictions are especially affected: they cannot afford food, or shelter, or participate when all those around them are buying and giving presents. “I don’t matter. Nothing matters. My family, the world, everyone, would be better off without me. I wish I was dead.”

The following quote is from an article on psychalive.org:

“In April, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a release stating the overall suicide rate rises and falls in connection with the economy.”

And the article goes on:

“A common misconception about suicide is the belief that a suicidal person wants to die, and that they cannot be helped. This is far from being the case. The suicidal state is almost always short-lived and treatable. When someone decides to end their life, they are acting out the will of an internal enemy or “anti-self.” A suicidal individual is divided between their true self that is on their side and wants to live and an anti-self which attempts to destroy them. By understanding this division, suicidal individuals can begin to challenge the distorted filter through which they view the world when in a suicidal state. … for every 1 percent increase in a state’s unemployment rate, the number of suicides increases by 1.3 percent.”

Warning Signs for Suicide

  1. Extreme self-hatred — “You don’t deserve to live.”
  2. Personalized hopelessness — “Nothing matters anymore. You should just kill yourself.”
  3. Pushing away friends and family — “What’s wrong with you? Look at all this trouble you’re causing the people who love you.”
  4. Isolation — “Just be by yourself. You are better off alone.”
  5. Thoughts of not belonging — “You don’t fit in anywhere.”
  6. Thoughts of being a burden to others — “You’re just dragging everyone down. You are such a burden; they would be better off without you.”

The following are common behaviors that indicate suicide risk:

  1. Past attempts
  2. Disrupted sleep patterns
  3. Increased anxiety and agitation
  4. Outbursts of rage or low frustration tolerance
  5. Risk-taking behavior
  6. Increased alcohol or drug use
  7. Sudden mood change for the better
  8. Any talk or indication of suicidal ideation or intent, planning or actual actions taken to procure a means

If you are concerned about someone who is suicidal you can understand the misconceptions about suicide. You can become aware of the do’s and don’ts of suicide prevention. You can identify the risk factors for suicide and learn the actions to take to help a loved one “step back from the edge.” http://www.psychalive.org/2011/09/suicide-prevention-advice-2/ and this same web site has an abundance of resources to help, including coping suggestions http://www.psychalive.org/2010/03/coping-suggestions-for-the-suicidal-person/.

If you are feeling suicidal right now, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/) for help. On their web site they  write “No matter what problems you are dealing with, we want to help you find a reason to keep living. By calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) you’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor at a crisis center in your area, anytime 24/7.”