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World Suicide Day – Spotting the signs and supporting those who may be having thoughts

One of our amazing authors, Lynn Crilly, who has published a series of books on mental health, has recently appeared in a number of press articles outlining how to spot the early signs that someone may be contemplating suicide. These articles were released ahead of World Suicide Day on September 10th – a very important day in focusing attention on the issue, reducing stigma and raising awareness among organisations, governments and the public.

Within the article Lynn provides four key pieces of advice on both spotting the signs of suicide and supporting someone who may be having suicidal thoughts:

>“Most people who attempt suicide will give some clue or warning, so it is vital to take those clues seriously, even if they are said casually. They may talk or write about death or harming themselves, or they may seek out things that could be used to take their own life, such as weapons or drugs.

> “There may be more subtle signs: hopelessness, self-loathing and self-destructive behaviour should all be taken seriously. Be alert also to those who seem to be getting their affairs in order or saying goodbye to people as if they will not be seen again. It sounds obvious, but all too often the clues are missed.”

> “If you spot any of these signs and are worried about someone you care about, it is natural to question whether you should say something. But the best way to find out is to ask them. Showing you care will not push someone towards suicide, rather it will give them an opportunity to voice their fears and feelings which could in turn help them to see that there is another way forward.

> “While talking is crucial, so is listening. Allow your friend or loved one to unload their despair and listen without judgement, remaining calm and accepting of how they feel. Reassure them that help is available and tell them how important they are to you.  Avoid arguing with them or appearing shocked.

The article concludes with a poem by her daughter to mark World Suicide Day. To read the article in full and the poem mentioned, please click here.

Lynn’s latest book ‘Hope with Depression’ is a supportive and insightful journey into the complexity and severity of depression. You can read the first chapter for free, right here on our website.. it might just help you, or someone you know.

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