Information to Help Prevent Suicide
(From The Connect Program)
Sometimes it can be difficult to tell warning signs from “normal” behavior especially in adolescents. Ask yourself, Is the behavior I am seeing very different for this particular person? Also, recognize that sometimes those who are depressed can appear angry, irritable, and/or hostile in addition to withdrawn and quiet.
Recognize the Warning Signs for Suicide:
Talking about or threatening to hurt or kill oneself.
Seeking firearms, drugs, or other lethal means for killing onseself.
Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide.
Direct statements or less direct statements of suicidal intent. (Ex. I’m just going to end it all or Everything would be easier if I wasn’t around.)
Feeling rage or uncontrollable anger or seeking revenge.
Feeling trapped and like there’s no way out.
Dramatic mood changes.
Seeing no reason for living or having no sense of purpose in life.
Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities.
Increasing alcohol or drug use.
Withdrawing from friends, family, and society.
Feeling anxious or agitated.
Being unable to sleep, or sleeping all the time.
Things you can do to help:
Ask directly about their suicidal feelings. Talking about suicide is the first step to preventing suicide.
Let them know you care.
Stay with them until a parent or professional is involved.
Offer a message of hope. Let them know you will assist them in getting help.
Connect them with help. National Suicide Lifeline 800-273-TALK (8255) (press “1” for veterans)
For a more complete list of warning signs as well as comprehensive lists of risk factors and protective factors, you can consult with the Connect website at http://www.theconnectprogram.org and click on Understanding Suicide.