Is someone you love Suicidal?
Our counsellors have all counselled many clients, over the years, through this process. When someone has suicidal thoughts, they feel like giving up. It’s as if from somewhere deep inside they have a little voice saying:
Suicide Prevention: Suicidal Thoughts are The White Flag the spirit waves in times of desperation.
Types of Suicidal Thoughts:
These are 3 x types of suicidal thoughts:
1. No Action Plan:
The person finds their life so hard that they just don’t know if they can go on. They have no plans to take their life, and they are not acting in a risky manner. They know they are just going through a tough time, or a tough experience, and they may feel like dying. This could progress to 2, or 3, so this needs to be addressed, and treated as urgent.
2. Risky Behaviour:
The person feels so overwhelmed by life that in that moment, and possibly for weeks or months, they have not felt like living. Even though they don’t have a plan to commit suicide, they are taking physical risks to their safety, in a slight attempt/hope that they may die. They may drive erratically, walk slowly through traffic, drink to excess, or over-use drugs, etc,. They are in serious risk of injury or death. This person needs professional help ASAP
3. Plan in place:
The person feels sick of living. The depression has been ongoing and they are making plans to end their suffering. They are likely to have repetitive thoughts about actions they want to take and are thinking about / planning ways to end their life. They may be giving possessions away, saying goodbye, tidying up loose ends. This is an URGENT situation. Please seek help immediately if this is you, or a loved one.
How does a counsellor help?
Our role is to assist clients to understand the areas they are struggling in, such as negative subconscious patterns, abusive relationships, etc,. then equip clients with the tools to feel empowered, and connected to life, again.
How can you tell if a loved one is thinking about suicide? They may begin to:
Get their affairs in order/speak to a solicitor
Say, ‘everyone would be better off with me’
Get quieter and withdraw from all usual activities and friends
Start to make amends, say sorry, and say their goodbyes
Sometimes a suicide attempt is not completed, and they attempt again later
Someone who is suicidal is often angry – usually at others, life, and most definitely at themselves.
Suicide Prevention, What can you do?
In all the above cases, make sure the person sees a psychologist or counsellor, a doctor, and possibly a psychiatrist, especially if they are having psychosis. Connect this person with professional help, and then give them lots of love and support. Someone who is suicidal is usually suffering from depression and can be suffering from anxiety. They normally would have a chemical imbalance, and therefore, life can feel like they are in hell. This feeling can change. I help clients constantly change. However, just having empathy for your loved one helps. People who want to suicide rarely do this for attention. They suicide as they feel (incorrectly) this is the only way to end the pain. Life is simply too hard.
A crisis counsellor or psychologist can help the suicidal person reconnect to life again.
Are you Listening? Life is Talking to YOU, and The Passionate Life Program (PLP) were created to help clients feel not only re-connected – but happy about life.
What do I do for the hundreds of suicidal client's I have helped? I investigate ...
When we work with a suicidal client, we do a thorough assessment (just like when we work with a client with depression), but we also work with ‘Links to Life’, connecting the client to the reasons they want to live. Our counsellors also open them up, allow them to feel their pain, and then find solutions (sometimes practical/behavior therapy) to help them make their lives easier.
This work is intense, and thorough, because we have usually one session to find the issues, and give the client the hope and the tools to change their life. We then recommend weekly counselling, until the client is out of crisis. We often find that 4 to 8 sessions is enough, for most straight forward situations. We have occasionally had clients who needed more time. The most important ones are the 1st 2 x sessions. Lots of work to do in those! We also give homework, which is integral to healing and change in behaviors, subconscious, thought patterns, and self-esteem.
There is only up from our lowest point in life.
If you are feeling suicidal… I encourage you to see a professional, however, never visit just any counsellor. Try to ensure they are qualified, trauma trained, and able to cope in this area. I hope, if you are reading this, that you seek help for yourself.
Trust me, the way you feel now will change when you know how to turn this around. We would love to help you.