If you’ve ever had someone tell you they are thinking of suicide you understand the influx of emotions and confusion that follows. If you’re a parent and your child is talking suicide, it may hit you like a ton of bricks, or… maybe not
For anyone who has experienced suicide in their family, I am truly sorry for your loss. This article is in no way meant to make you feel any guilt. I want to stress to everyone that often in my life I’ve found that looking back with the “I should have thoughts” will only cause more emotional pain in situations like this. We can’t possibly know if we would have done things differently whether it would have made any difference in our lives. We all can move ahead and be free of should haves and could of’s and make the most of our life, especially when it comes to living life after a suicide. It’s never the same, I know, but as a parent looking back on raising my kids, I know I did what I was capable of at the time. If I could I would change some things, but it doesn’t serve any purpose to dwell on those thoughts, right?
Maybe you assume the child is going through a phase. Some people don’t want to believe the person who talks about suicide as being capable of actually doing it. Are they trying to get attention? As a parent maybe you find it hard to believe that your happy go lucky child who now is a preteen would ever even think of suicide. They talk to you about all their problems, and there is nothing they keep from you. Wait….that’s a red flag right there!
It is unrealistic that any child shares everything with their parent! Even if you have an awesome relationship with your child and/or friend and can talk about everything, there is many things we all think about and experience that we may not share with others. Sometimes we hold on to hurtful things a little too long, or we don’t talk about it because of embarrassment or because we tell ourselves it was our fault. We can never assume when a person talks about suicide that they aren’t serious.
Have you ever known a parent whose teen or adult child committed suicide? Maybe a friend from school or a relative died from suicide. I’ve known personally 4 people who committed suicide. I know a few more who were suicidal and did or didn’t get help. Sometimes suicidal thoughts result in the suicidal person hurting someone else instead. It seems to happen more than I want to believe. And when it’s someone close to me I seem to be in denial at first. Sometimes it’s been the last person I imagined!
We need to take any talk of suicide as completely true and a call for immediate help.
It takes a lot of fear and/or boldness for a suicidal person to admit their feelings, so please take them seriously. Something is truly wrong within this person’s mind and even possibly their physical health for them to feel this way. If they mention suicide, they have thought of it, and are not seeing a good reason to keep living.
Suicidal thoughts can be a result of Thyroid disorders, Traumatic events, Medication side effects, or other Physical conditions.
Psychiatrists and Psychologists recommend that anyone who is talking about hurting or killing themselves or others to get immediate help. This means a visit to the Emergency Room at the hospital or a visit to a mental health hospital.
What if you just try to encourage the person? Maybe you can agree to talk every day and keep in contact with the person. Maybe you tell them you will pray for them. NO, NO, NO.
A person’s life is not worth the risk. The heartbreak that a suicide will cause a family is not worth the risk. If they aren’t being completely truthful about how bad they feel, it’s still a good idea to get help. If they go to the hospital and they are released in a few days with a wealth of information to use to rise above their depression or mental illness, it could be the best thing that’s ever happened to them and will give them a chance for a better life!
It’s worth any amount of money.
Hospitals aren’t going to come and empty our fridge of food because we can’t pay them! Hospitals take payments that people can afford, even if it takes a long time to pay that bill. They don’t charge interest on the bill. Hospitals can tell people about many resources to use for help in paying a bill. If all else fails, many hospitals will renegotiate the amount a patient owes. Really…if someone can’t afford health insurance or the deductible, they probably qualify for many programs that the hospital or social worker can suggest who will help with the bill.
Suicidal Thoughts Are A Problem That Is More Complicated Than Most People Are Able To Manage
Every situation is different. I would rather have a person I care about be in a safe place getting the knowledge, support, and possibly medication they need to feel better. Everyone deserves relief from feeling that low and to have the ability to enjoy their life. I can’t see a difference in the suffering of a person who is suicidal to anyone who may be suffering from cancer, diabetes, or any other illness. I’ve seen it personally and it’s heart-wrenching.