Discovering that one of your close friends has suicidal tendencies is likely to make you feel anxious and hopeless as you try to stay calm and contemplate how to help him/her.
Being presented with the responsibility of helping your friend is likely to overwhelm you, but drawing on your inner strength and employing some practical strategies could help save the precious life of your friend.
1. Listen to them
A suicidal person usually carries emotional baggage, which they feel that they canâ€™t handle any more. If this is the case, offer to listen to their problems, as they vent their feelings of despair, anger and loneliness. Even if you donâ€™t have any advice this is often enough to lighten their load.
2. Keep them talking
Half the reason for suicidal tendencies is that they donâ€™t know how to talk or have anyone to open up to share their emotional burden. The more you engage them, the more chance you have of taking the edge off their worry.
3. Donâ€™t hesitate to ask
Donâ€™t hesitate or be afraid to ask your friend what is producing their suicidal thoughts. This will give you some valuable information about how to help your friend. However, be very careful that you donâ€™t put ideas into their mind.
4. Suggest lifestyle changes
If you notice obvious factors in your friendâ€™s life which invoke misery and depression, try to suggest some changes without sounding overbearing. Let your friend know that you care and that you are trying to help him/her out of the miserable situations which cause panic and anxiety.
5. Help them think positive
If you have succeeded in sowing optimism in your friendâ€™s mind, eliminating the negative beliefs from your friendâ€™s mind could stem anxiety and worry.
6. Seek professionalsâ€™ help
If you do not succeed in banishing your friendâ€™s suicidal intentions, seek professional help to help. Donâ€™t blame yourself or others, if your attempt fails. If you are very close to your suicidal friend, it would be wise to seek out grief counseling or enlist the help of suicide survivors.