What should I do if I think someone is suicidal?
If you think someone is suicidal, do not leave him or her alone. Try to get the person to seek immediate help from his or her doctor or the nearest hospital emergency room, or call 911. Eliminate access to firearms or other potential tools for suicide, including unsupervised access to medications.
How To Be Helpful to Someone Who Is Threatening Suicide
•Be direct. Talk openly and matter-of-factly about suicide.
•Be willing to listen. Allow expressions of feelings. Accept the feelings.
•Be non-judgmental. Don’t debate whether suicide is right or wrong, or whether feelings are good or bad. Don’t lecture on the value of life.
•Get involved. Become available. Show interest and support.
•Don’t dare him or her to do it.
•Don’t act shocked. This will put distance between you.
•Don’t be sworn to secrecy. Seek support.
•Offer hope that alternatives are available but do not offer glib reassurance.
•Take action. Remove means, such as guns or stockpiled pills.
•Get help from persons or agencies specializing in crisis intervention and suicide prevention.