We’ve all been there. We have a friend or a family member we’re really worried about. Maybe it’s beyond worry for their happiness… maybe you’re starting to be worried about their safety. Maybe you’re not sure if they are safe to be alone because they’re so down.
It can be terrifying to ask someone if they’re thinking about suicide. You might have thoughts like, “if I bring it up, then they’ll definitely think about doing it” or “I don’t know what the right thing to say is.” It is okay to bring it up and ask. If they are thinking about it and you bring it up first, it might feel like a relief for the person who is struggling. It’s also okay not to know EXACTLY what to say. Keep reading for some tips.
If you’ve noticed that someone in your life is showing warning signs of suicide, it may be time to ask them what’s going on. Here are some warning signs:
There’s no perfect way to go about this and it will likely feel uncomfortable. But having a few guideposts can be helpful when navigating such a tricky conversation with someone you love or care about.
All thoughts of suicide should be treated seriously. What is most important is that you support the person in staying safe. An actively suicidal person should not be left alone. If you are unable to stay with the person, find someone who can. If you decide that the person is having thoughts of suicide but they are in no immediate danger, encourage them to seek treatment.
Remember, when in doubt, it’s always okay to take the person to the emergency room or Pine Rest Urgent Care in Grand Rapids. Counselors at Lifeologie are here to help you too. Give us a call if you or someone you care about is having thoughts of suicide.
Marissa Wilson is a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) and a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT-200) at Lifeologie. She teaches psychotherapeutic yoga and works with adolescents to help them be themselves. Marissa believes that every person (including tweens/teens) already has what they need to heal, but sometimes our “okay-ness” gets stuck under layers of self-protection and hurt. To find out more about Marissa, check out her biography.