A blogger I follow, a fellow sufferer of mental illness, made a post today asking of those who had wanted to commit suicide, "why didn't they?" There were so many things I wanted to say to her, so many answers, too many answers, and yet every one of them true. And then, as if from … Continue reading Hoarding Reasons To Live
I can't shake this malaise, and I can't stop staring at the date on my laptop and phone. One week. One week until the 4 year anniversary of my Dad dying. I hate this countdown, and yet I do it every year. Perhaps I'll never stop; I don't know. I have what one psychiatrist called … Continue reading What a Shame
A great guide to handling a life or death conversation. Thanks for sharing.
You don’t need fancy words to start a potentially life-saving conversation. A simple “Are things so bad you are thinking of ending your life?” is enough.
If the answer is “Yes”, don’t respond by reciting a litany of reasons there are to go on living or try to guilt or shame the person into not killing themselves because it would hurt you or be inconvenient for others. If the answer is “No”, don’t assume you are hearing the truth.
Such actions are dangerous, insensitive, and counter-productive. Worse, they will end the conversation when it most needs to be heard.
Instead, listen, express concern (in a non-judgemental way), and reassure the person you would like to help them in whatever way needed in that moment. This could mean not talking at all, but just being there, unafraid of the darkness spoken between you and residing in them. It could also mean…
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