I’m sure that there have been dozens of blogs in the past few weeks on the topic of suicide. It’s an extremely painful thing for so many. I have been in very dark places and I have my heart broken by the loss of others. This is written more for the person that has a friend or loved one that may be in that dark place. Here are some things that personally helped me in the past.
Well, let me just say this to those that are struggling. You may want to end your story, but DON”T!!! You are someone’s world and someone’s reason to smile. That is an amazing thing to be. Don’t be blind to that fact. But I know that you are, because I was. You’re not at your most rational self. That’s ok, and it will pass if you allow it. Please let it pass. Please.
Now to those that are with that person suffering, I have a link to the Western Michigan University website that has some excellent tips for dealing with someone that is suicidal.
And now here are some things that have helped me.
- Stop with the tired platitudes. When I was at my lowest, I hated hearing people say, “things will get better”. The phrase, “you have so much to live for” would piss me off beyond belief. Don’t tell me about other people that have it worse and keep on going. That is not what someone needs to hear.
- Listen. If you have someone that is at that point, and you can get them to talk, do so. That’s actually a good sign. If they are willing to talk to a professional, even better.
- Don’t give that loved one space!!! Not the best idea in this situation. Stay with them. I can’t stress that enough.
- Know when they are saying good-bye. I have a friend that I worked with many years ago. The place we worked at together closed and we went our separate ways. Right before she took her life, she came my new office just to say hi. She looked great. She had lost weight, changed her hair, and just looked great. If I had known what she had planned, I might of handcuffed myself to her. I remember when she left, we both turned around at the same time. She smiled at me and was gone. It still breaks my heart.
- Service. Get them out in the world doing for others. Drag them to a soup kitchen, get them to volunteer their time with a local organization. Get them doing something for others. No, it’s not to get them to see people that are worse situations. Being of service to others can do a lot to get that person out of their own head.
- Get them laughing. No, a knock knock joke would not have saved my friend or anyone else for that matter. I recall a time when I was in a bad place, and saw that the movie Spaceballs was on. I can’t count the number of times that I watched this as a kids. It is a ridiculous movie, but no matter how old I am, I laugh all the way through it. I remember, being in that dark place, and laughing when the satellites got jammed and when Dark Helmet had his ship go into ludicrous speed. Stupid, I know. After the movie I found myself smiling. I remember sitting there and feeling good, and wanting to continue to feel that. Again, I am NOT saying that a rom-com will cure depression and thoughts of suicide. But it’s nice feeling that smile on your face.
Always seek professional help for those individuals and just be there. THIS BLOG IS NOT MEANT TO BE A SOURCE OF PROFESSIONAL HELP. The subject of suicide has been everywhere and I just felt compelled to share.
Please understand, as I said before, a person contemplating suicide is not the most rational. Don’t beat them up for how they feel. Just be there for them.
If there is something that has helped you or a loved one, please feel free to share it in the comment section. If you need to seek help the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.
Until next time …