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SUICIDE

If you have been thinking about suicide, it is important to

GET HELP RIGHT AWAY.

 

Safe2Tell Wyoming is available 24 hours a day to help you with

whatever you are facing. It is completely confidential and free to use.

Here are some additional resources that are available 24/7

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:

1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text CONNECT to 741741

Trevor Lifeline for LGBTQ community

1-866-488-7386 or text START to 678678

If you feel more comfortable talking to a peer. Teen Line is available via phone, text, or the app between 6pm to 10pm PST.

Phone: 1-800-TLC-TEEN or Text “TEEN” to 839863

Friends Having Coffee

Tips for 

helping a friend

Everyone feels sad, depressed, stressed, or angry sometimes — especially when dealing with the pressures of school, friends, and family. But some people may feel sadness or hopelessness that won't go away, along with thoughts of suicide.

You may have heard that people who talk about suicide won't actually go through with it. That's not true. People who talk about suicide may be likely to try it.

Immediate warning signs that someone may be thinking of suicide include:

  • talking about suicide or death in general

  • looking online for ways to kill oneself or buying items to use in a suicide attempt

  • talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live

  • engaging in self-destructive behavior (drinking a lot of alcohol, taking drugs, driving too fast, or cutting for example)

  • visiting or calling people to say goodbye

  • giving away possessions

Tips to Help a Friend:

ASK: If you have a friend who's talking about suicide or showing other warning signs, don't wait to see if they start to feel better. Talk about it. Ask them directly if they're having thoughts of suicide. Having someone care enough to ask these questions can help save your friend's life.

Some people are reluctant to ask someone if they have been thinking about suicide or hurting themselves. They might worry that, by asking, they're planting the idea of suicide. Research has proven this to be 100% untrue. If you're worried — ask.

Asking someone if they're having thoughts about suicide can be hard. It can help to let your friend know why you're asking. For instance, you might say, "I've noticed that you've been talking a lot about wanting to be dead. Have you been having thoughts about trying to kill yourself?" Be prepared for their answer and be ready to talk to a trusted adult at home or school to get them the help needed.

KEEP THEM SAFE:  After the “Ask” step, and you’ve determined suicide is indeed being talked about, it’s important to find out a few things to establish immediate safety. Have they already done anything to try to kill themselves before talking with you? Does the person experiencing thoughts of suicide know how they would kill themselves? Do they have a specific, detailed plan? What’s the timing for their plan? What sort of access do they have to their planned method?

Reducing a suicidal person’s access to highly lethal items or places is an important part of suicide prevention. While this is not always easy, asking if the at-risk person has a plan and removing or disabling the lethal means can make a difference.

BE THERE: Listen carefully and learn what the individual is thinking and feeling. Research suggests acknowledging and talking about suicide may in fact reduce rather than increase suicidal thoughts.

An important aspect of this step is to make sure you follow through with the ways in which you say you’ll be able to support the person – do not commit to anything you are not willing or able to accomplish. If you are unable to be physically present with someone with thoughts of suicide, talk with them to develop some ideas for others who might be able to help as well (again, only others who are willing, able, and appropriate to be there). Listening is again very important during this step – find out what and who they believe will be the most effective sources of help.

HELP THEM CONNECT:  One way to start helping them find ways to connect is to work with them to develop a safety plan. This can include ways for them to identify if they start to experience significant, severe thoughts of suicide along with what to do in those crisis moments. A safety plan can also include a list of individuals to contact when a crisis occurs.

You can also help make a connection with a trusted adult like a family member, friend, spiritual advisor, or mental health professional. If it is not possible, reach out to Safe2Tell Wyoming through the mobile app, phone 1-844-996-7233, or our website at www.safe2tellwy.org.

FOLLOW UP: Staying in touch after a crisis or after being discharged from care can make a difference. Studies have shown the number of suicide deaths goes down when someone follows up with the at-risk person.

You can leave a message, send a text, or give them a call. The follow-up step is a great time to check in with them to see if there is more you are capable of helping with or if there are things you’ve said you would do and haven’t yet had the chance to get done for the person.

This type of contact can continue to increase their feelings of connectedness and share your ongoing support. There is evidence that even a simple form of reaching out, like sending a postcard, can potentially reduce their risk for suicide.