By: Madi Nitzky
There have been so many celebrity deaths by suicide in the past year. It is devastating. Reading articles about any celebrity that died by suicde, it really makes me think about how each person could have been helped.
Working at an emotional support hotline, and teaching others how to be empathetic, there are a few things I want say about people who are suicidal, attempt suicide, and/or die by suicide.
Suicide is not selfish. People who are suicidal feel like a burden. They feel they don't contribute to society in a productive way. They feel like is better without them in it and they are doing others a FAVOR by no longer being here.
If someone has attempted suicide before they are at a MUCH higher risk the second time. It is never to be taken lightly.
Death by suicide is commonly a surprise. A lot of people don't see it coming. It isn't always easy to tell the difference between Suicide and depression. And it isn't always easy to tell if someone is suicidal. But if someone was depressed and now seems happy, it should be a red flag. If someone struggles with depression, and then seems to have a sudden onset of happiness, it is most likely because they have PLANNED THEIR ATTEMPT. They now feel a sense of hope and happiness, because they know there is an end to their pain.
If you are confused or unsure whether your friend, loved one, co-worker,etc. is suicidal, ASK THEM. Asking questions related to suicide does not put the idea in the person's head. First ask, "do you feel hopeless/helpless?" (Most suicidal people will say yes). Then say the words "are you feeling suicidal?" Do not say, "do you want to hurt yourself?" That is much different. Asking this question could be all the person needs to make them feel alive again. Letting them know you're there for them no matter what, connecting with them, that's what they need.
Reach out to anyone in your life you are concerned about, no matter how close you are with them, or how big or small these concerns might be. If they are having trouble expressing how they feel, encourage them to call Centre Helps. Our Centre Helps volunteer counselors are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to provide nonjudgemental emotional support to those in need.
Suicide is preventable if we work together.
Centre Helps Hotline Number: (814) 237-5855 (24/7)