My friend is clearly showing some signs of suicide. What do I do now?


As difficult as it can be for someone to talk about their thoughts of suicide, it can be equally difficult to figure out how to help and what to say to someone experiencing these things. If you notice or have a feeling that someone is thinking about suicide, there are many helpful ways you can address the problem. To begin with, be honest with your feelings. Let them know you’ve noticed they’re going though something difficult, and genuinely express your care and concern for them. Let them know you are there to listen, without judgment. Put your own thoughts and opinions about what they’re expressing aside. Remember, you are not there to give advice or “fix” the problem; you are there to create a safe space for them to open up to you. Ask if they are having thoughts of suicide. If someone tells you they are considering suicide, ask them if they have a trust worthy adult they can talk to, and suggest talking to this person together. If they do not know a trust worthy adult, ask if they’d be willing to talk to a trust worthy adult in your life, or a counselor or teacher at school. Let them know that they do not have to go through things alone, and offer support throughout the process of getting them to help and safety. Do not make the promise of keeping suicidal thoughts a secret. Below are some specific ways to approach these types of conversations, communicating support and non-judgmental listening.

“I’m concerned/worried about you. ”
“Are you thinking about suicide?”
“Who else can we talk to about this?”
“I am here, I can listen to you.”
“Tell me what’s bothering you.”
“How long have you been feeling this way?”
“Tell me more.”