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A suicidal person may not ask for help, but that doesn’t mean that help isn’t wanted.
Most people who commit suicide don’t want to die—they just want to stop hurting.
Suicide prevention starts with recognizing the warning signs and taking them seriously. If you think a friend or family member is considering suicide, you might be afraid to bring up the subject.
But talking openly about suicidal thoughts and feelings can save a life.
The World Health Organization estimates that approximately 1 million people die each year from suicide.
What drives so many individuals to take their own lives?
To those not in the grips of suicidal depression and despair, it’s difficult to understand what drives so many individuals to take their own lives.
But a suicidal person is in so much pain that he or she can see no other option.
Suicide is a desperate attempt to escape suffering that has become unbearable.
Blinded by feelings of self-loathing, hopelessness, and isolation, a suicidal person can’t see any way of finding relief except through death. But despite their desire for the pain to stop, most suicidal people are deeply conflicted about ending their own lives.
They wish there was an alternative to committing suicide, but they just can’t see one.
Most suicidal individuals give warning signs or signals of their intentions.
The best way to prevent suicide is to recognize these warning signs below and know how to respond if you spot them.
Major warning signs for suicide include talking about killing or harming oneself, talking or writing a lot about death or dying, and seeking out things that could be used in a suicide attempt, such as weapons and drugs. These signals are even more dangerous if the person has a mood disorder such as depression or bipolar disorder, suffers from alcohol dependence, has previously attempted suicide, or has a family history of suicide.
A more subtle but equally dangerous warning sign of suicide is hopelessness.
Studies have found that hopelessness is a strong predictor of suicide.
People who feel hopeless may talk about “unbearable” feelings, predict a bleak future, and state that they have nothing to look forward to.
Other warning signs that point to a suicidal mind frame include dramatic mood swings or sudden personality changes, such as going from outgoing to withdrawn or well-behaved to rebellious.
A suicidal person may also lose interest in day-to-day activities, neglect his or her appearance, and show big changes in eating or sleeping habits.
If you experience any of these feelings, get help!
If you know someone who exhibits these feelings, offer help!
Here in Bullitt County, we are starting a Suicide Prevention Group, if you are interested in joining us or would like to know more about it, please contact Liz McGuire at 502-955-5355 for more information.