When someone you know exhibits suicidal behavior, it can be difficult to know what to say – talking about it openly or intervening can feel as if you’re making matters worse. However, there are steps you can take to help those you love overcome difficult times. As we recognize Suicide Prevention Month, we’ve outlined a few ways you can help and support those experiencing suicidal thoughts below.
Understand where their pain is coming from.
Sometimes, those who think about suicide don’t want to end their life – they want to find a way to escape the repeating cycle of their pain and distress. Tunnel vision on hopelessness and lack of alternatives can drive people to feel the only way to escape it is by ending their life. Also, guilt can make them feel as if they’re a burden to those around them. Let it be known that you want to understand where these feelings are stemming from, and you will stand by them as they find alternative ways to overcome those emotions.
Recognize that social perfectionism and societal expectations have a hand in suicidal thoughts.
We feel the pressures of societal standards every day. These can weigh heavily on us, as …