Why Ignoring A Suicide Attempt Isn’t the Answer

79073434If you have a friend or loved one who has attempted suicide, you may be unsure how to best offer support going forward. While it may seem like the best course of action is to ignore the suicide attempt, friends and family often better help a loved one when they open up dialogue about the event and what led to it.

When someone attempts to commit suicide, he or she is usually suffering from extreme pain—either physical or emotional. Instead of looking for attention, most suicidal individuals are only seeking to remove themselves from a situation over which they feel no control. This situation could be a number of things, including chronic depression, schizophrenia, chronic illness, drug and alcohol dependency or a sudden life event.

When a suicide attempt is not fully carried out, your friend or family member may feel embarrassed and will most likely expect some sort of retribution from those he or she cares about. Instead of punishing your loved one with words of judgment, start a conversation asking what circumstances led to the event, always emphasizing empathy.

During your conversations, avoid minimizing what your friend or loved one is experiencing. Even statements that may seem positive could cause alienation. These statements include, “Everything happens for a reason,” and “Everything will be better soon.” Statements like these tell the individual that his or her experiences and feelings aren’t valid. While the statements come from a good place, they end up being placations that don’t address the complexity of everyday life. Instead, you can offer encouragement by letting your loved one know that you’re there to offer support.

If someone who has once attempted suicide exhibits certain signs that lead you to believe he or she will attempt it again, it’s always a good idea to talk about it directly instead of avoiding the situation. Signs include withdrawing from friends and family, making a will, saying goodbye in a way that seems final and exhibiting erratic behavior. While it may seem scary to discuss your concerns with the person in question, being open is generally more helpful than staying quiet. Ask your friend or family member if there is anything upsetting him or her and what you can do to help. Often, knowing that someone genuinely cares will help someone who is considering suicide rethink his or her decision.

It’s not always possible to protect someone from suicide. If you’ve lost a loved one, you will probably experience a level of survivor’s guilt. While ultimately suicide is a personal decision and no one can be held responsible, the best way to help those you love is to be aware of how to best support them during trying times.

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The Link Between Alcohol, Insomnia, And Suicide

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Insomnia, Depression, Suicide and Alcohol: The links

Recent studies in alcohol consumption and ensuing behavioral disorders reveal that excessive alcohol consumption or alcohol addiction may result in insomnia and other sleeping disorders and these, in turn, can cause acute depression in the affected individuals. The alarming fact is that studies and surveys show that these depression bouts often lead to suicide and suicide attempts.

Alcohol and Insomnia: What is the Relationship?

Alcohol and insomnia share a sort of two-way relationship. People who suffer from insomnia are often known to revert to alcohol as a sort of curative. Since alcohol slows down the functions of our central nervous system, it acts as a kind of sedative. However, this does not mean that this leads to peaceful sleep. The tranquilizing effects of alcohol are known to last only during the first cycles of sleep but gradually wear away when we plunge into deeper sleep. As a result, alcohol-induced sleep may cause repeated waking in the last hours of sleep and this often results in fatigue, anxiety and depression.

On the other hand, people who are already alcohol addicts have high chances of suffering from insomnia and other sleep disturbances when they go off alcohol. This is one of the common withdrawal symptoms noted in alcohol addicts and it is common for many to start drinking again in an effort to escape these afflictions.

A figure shows that 1/5th of all Americans who die when drunk are suicides. Moreover, a large number of suicide attempt survivors are diagnosed with alcohol abuse-related disorders. According to researchers, young adults and teenagers form the greatest number of these suicide victims.

Researchers have found a causal link between alcohol consumption to suicidal action. Since sleeping patterns are impacted negatively by alcohol consumption and since this often leads to disturbing nightmares and hallucinatory or paranoiac vision and images, the affected individual often falls victim to acute forms of depression. And this in turn increases the suicide risk related to alcohol.

For more articles on drugs, alcohol, behavioral topics and more, follow our blog A Calming Tide: Drug, Alcohol and Behavioral Resource…