What to do when a loved one is suicidal… Guest Article

The Mypersonalrecoveryfromschizophrenia blog walks through the journey of living and coping with Schizophrenia. Read more informative posts today!

What to do when a Loved One is Suicidal

A Prevention Toolkit

According to the World Health Organization, more than 700,000 people across the globe commit suicide every year. What can we do to curb this tragic statistic? One thing was can do is understand the link between Schizophrenia and suicide, and do some homework on what the mental illness is all about. Mypersonalrecoveryfromschizophrenia provides steps you can take if you’re concerned about someone you know hurting themselves.

Assess the Situation

If you’re worried a loved one may be considering suicide, step one is assessing how immediate the threat of self-harm is. Don’t beat around the bush — instead, ask these questions to find out if you need to call 911.

  • Are you thinking of killing yourself? Asking directly if someone is thinking of suicide may be uncomfortable, but it’s the best way to get to bottom of the situation. If the answer is anything but a strong “No,” it’s time to dig deeper.
  • What are you unhappy about? This may include work, among other things. Many things may factor into this malaise and discontent at the workplace, including boredom, stress and perfectionism.
  • Are you using drugs or alcohol? Psychology Today notes that alcohol and drug abuse is one of the top risk factors for suicide, second only to mental health disorders. If your loved one is abusing substances, it can be a big indicator that they’re in danger.
  • Do you have a plan? If someone not only has considered suicide but also has a plan for how they can do it, it’s time to be very concerned.
  • Do you know when you’ll do it? On the surface, this may sound like an insensitive question. However, someone who is planning suicide may freely admit their timeframe for taking their life. If they do, you’ll have a better idea of how urgently you need to act.
  • Do you have the means? If the person has a suicide plan, ask if they have the means to follow through on that plan. This could be access to prescription pills, a gun, or some other method. If someone has both a plan and the means, it’s time to call emergency services.

If the answer to all five of these questions is “Yes,” there’s no time to waste. Call 911 immediately. Emergency services will arrive to take the person to the nearest emergency room, where they’ll be evaluated by a mental health professional. Depending on the outcome, they may be referred to an inpatient facility for psychiatric treatment. If they’re deemed to be at imminent risk of suicide, they’ll be placed on a 72-hour psychiatric hold at the hospital.

If the person is thinking of suicide but has yet to formulate a plan or acquire the means, a call to a crisis hotline is the best approach.

Call a Crisis Line

It can be frightening to know someone you care about is thinking of ending their life. Instead of trying to handle the situation on your own, turn to a suicide hotline. Trained staff and volunteers on the other end can help you find out what to say, what to do, and what resources to turn to in your region.

Try to convince your loved one to contact a crisis line themselves, too. A helpline can keep a suicidal person off the ledge while you wait for emergency services to arrive and they can be a valuable source of support when harmful thoughts reemerge later on. A person in crisis may find it easier to open up to a stranger than to a friend or family member whose judgment they fear, and the hotline worker will be able to quickly research mental health resources in your area.

No matter where in the U.S. you live, you can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. The Lifeline also has a Spanish language helpline (1-888-628-9454) and a TTY helpline for people who are deaf or hard of hearing (1-800-799-4889). They also have an online chat option for people who are struggling with their mental health and need someone to talk to.

Plan the Next Move

A person considering suicide has likely been dealing with mental health issues for a long time, and the problem doesn’t go away as soon as the threat of suicide has dissipated. To prevent self-harm and improve overall mental health, direct your loved one toward resources that can help them learn coping mechanisms and improve their well-being. This could mean therapy, medication, and tools for staying calm in high-stress moments, like an emotional support service dog. Whatever path forward they choose, be sure to continue to offer nonjudgmental support and a sympathetic ear.

Image via Pixabay

Thank you June Duncan, author and caregiver for this excellent article and toolkit. Feel free to write for my blog more. I think this is my favorite blog of all the almost 10 years of blogging due to my own experience of being suicidal, while wanting to live, but this would have been helpful for my loved ones in any case.

peace love light and joy to all of you

Feel free to reblog this insightful article. Let’s together spread this message of hope and love to all!

Victoria

True story of the day and upcoming guest article on what to do when a loved one is suicidal…

Even though I am not at my best physically or mentally I have the energy and desire this morning here in California to blog and get you all excited about a guest blogger article I will be posting as soon as I work out some kinks with the format. I love it when kind people reach out to me to write for free about something to do with mental health and sometimes it takes a while to get it published but please follow me if you are interested in this topic, what to do when a loved one is suicidal.

I’ve been suicidal many times in my life and have also been on the helping end with a loved one who is suicidal and this guest article really talks about some important things to do and not to do when someone is struggling with suicidal ideation. So stay tuned!

On to the true story of the day! I couldn’t make this s#$t up! This is about a story of my interesting life that dates back to circa 1988 when I was living on the streets of New York City choosing homelessness over a nice warm bed at my parents’ house in California. I will start at the ending because it is the best part, honoring my late father’s memory, which I just found out about from my mom a lie he told me to get me off the streets of New York City and safely back home into recovery from drug addiction.

Winter time, freezing cold, chosen homelessness, illegal drugs constant (which I won’t get into to not glorify my drug addiction back when I was 18), punk rock scene, 14 year old runaway named Carrie dying in a fire at the squat we lived in where a rival gang set it on fire and she died in the fire, desperation, broken, suicidal but the only plan I had to kill myself was to go out in a bang with drugs and activities never to be mentioned even here where I am anonymously blogging.

It was a freezing day and I decided to call home from a payphone booth on a corner where I would frequently panhandle to get my drugs of the day and maybe a slice of pizza. My dad answered. I was out of money and desperation was in my voice. I asked him if I could come home. They loved me so much and I put them through hell with my choices from age 16 to party hard and lie and steal. I was not to be trusted. My dad arranged for a flight home, the next flight available and told me the flight was non-refundable. Finding out later that this was a lie and my only chance from them. If I didn’t get on this flight, they would not trust me again and as usual used tough love they learned in classes for how to deal with loved ones who suffered from drug addiction. This was the lie though that saved my life and I am eternally grateful to my dad for telling it.

Somehow, by some miracle I got to the airport in New Jersey, through a snowstorm, late, running through the airport, lying to security that my bus had crashed so they would push me through without a wait so I could make it on that flight. I barely made it on that flight. Flying home was terrible, I had a hole in my nose, frostbite on my hands and feet, a desperate will to live by the grace of God, who kept me safe this whole time. I was a proclaimed atheist spewing my nonsense to others who would listen. Yet protected by God through the insanity of actions even though I had no belief despite being raised to believe in God.

I was a wreck to say the least and the last thing I wanted was to admit defeat to my parents who were loving but very strict and controlling which led to my rebellion. The plane landed in California and I was one of the last to get off it. I found out just the other day from my mom that they were waiting in anticipation but with doubt if I had even gotten on the plane. How I feel for them now the hell I put them through back then. But I got off and all I remember was the silent drive home.

They had their terms or conditions I had to follow one of which was to go into a drug rehab program called Kaiser. I did reluctantly because I was still in denial over my drug use. It was there that I was introduced to the 12 step programs and it was in them that I finally found God and believed for the first time in my life that there was a power greater than myself that could restore me to sanity.

Stay tuned for part two of this true story. But bottom line is that even though I have only 6 months today off off weed, the good news is that I am finally addressing why I used drugs to cope with life through the steps with a trusted sponsor and the best part is that I am being honest about my life and love and thank my Higher Power for all my life, the good, bad and the ugly. For without hardship there is no glory.

Peace to you all!

If you are struggling today with drug addiction, know there is hope for you, even if you have relapsed. There is always hope until we draw our last breath and I’m not done breathing yet. Haha. Let’s see now how my God will help me through thee next 50 years. I can’t wait for more will be revealed.

Peace, love light and joy

Michelle aka Victoria

Out of my hands 🙌🏻

Aahhh! Life is so strange often…

But I’m doing the best with all that is on my plate as my dad would say quite often… I like quoting him. He had great wisdom. Thanks dad!

While I recover from my recent psychotic episode and deal with thyroid issues I have more time on my hands and feel inclined to blog.

Upcoming is a guest article on how to help someone who is suicidal, it’s wonderful and well written and will be posting it soon. Also I am going to be sharing more stories of my crazy teenage life and how a lie from my dad when I was living on the streets of New York City circa 1988 saved my life from drug addiction! I just found out about the lie he told from my mom! Thanks mom♥️

This blog is going in a different direction I feel inclined to write about addiction and recovery because that’s where I’m at. And that’s what I’ve always done since starting this blog in 2013!

I just celebrated 6 months off weed and 7 months off alcohol! A miracle from God or my Higher Power I prefer the term nowadays. Life is much better off the drugs for sure.

Peace love and light to all ♥️

Michelle aka Victoria

I die without it 1/19

Early morning musings on this post.
I did not have covid, I had a psychotic break:( it started when my daughter who is twenty-seven now who has been my main support since she was twelve years old up until November last year, left our home to travel to Mexico for 4 days. Literally, the minute she left I developed symptoms of a physical illness but upon her return to the Us last night, my symptoms disappeared like magic.
I of course wonder what this means in regards to many things in my life. Much to ponder.
My oldest son, dear daughter in law and my granddaughter needed help during this psychotic break and I couldn’t be there for them no matter how hard I tried and I love them all very much. Of course we wanted to rule out covid. But my test results got lost and had to retest today with the nonrapid test which came back negative.
My daughter in law injured her back and couldn’t even lift my granddaughter. And I couldn’t go help. My son was tired. Luckily my daughter in law’s mother was able to take off of work and help them greatly. God bless her!
My daughter in law asked me recently to baby sit my granddaughter when she is seven months old and I said yes but now and then I am doubting if this is a good idea with thee recent events of my very strange life.
My daughter is my first love and we share a special bond, always have. With her being gone I became psychotic. This blog by graceful addict confirms my worst fears, that without the tangible love of my recently passed dad and the never ending love of my daughter, I will cease to exist, for no explained reason except that these two people, my late father and my dear nana, have loved me so deeply that it is sure I would die without them. Not at my own hands, not suicidal thank God, but it is so.
Thank you graceful addict for listening to your gut and inspirations from above, around and within your heart and soul.
peace, love, light and joy to all:) Victoria aka Michelle a sober and clean grateful addict who loves God above all but who still needs the love of her nana as was displayed these past 4 strange days.
I am ok now that she is back in Ca but know I need to have a heart to heart soon with my daughter in law about watching my granddaughter… please say a prayer for this conversation to be well received and soon as she needs to let her work know when the baby will be expected at the daycare where she works.
pax V

The daily addict

I was listening to a lecture given by David Hawkins today. And although I like to think I “know” the power and importance of love in my life…this lecture just engrained it a bit more into my brain.

This is some information I quoted from his lecture that allowed me to understand a little more:

“In World War 2 the children, the infants were taken out of London at the time of the blitz. They were taken out into domiciles out into the safe country and they died by the thousands. They stopped eating, they became apathetic, they became depressed, they stopped responding and they died. So physicality then, is not enough. It baffles science because nutritionally they had everything – vitamins, balanced diets, germ free environments etcetera. And they died right and left. And then they brought in some nannies. ‘What’s the matter with these infants?’ And the nannies…

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finding the answer in the most unlikely places…

Dear readers old and new,

Tonight I am blogging about how we never know when or where our help will come from.
First allow me to backup to the start of my day and last night, I have been dealing with a very difficult situation in my family of nucleus. I won’t go into details but basically there is strife, hurt feelings, taking sides, 🖤 emotional outbursts, demands for apologizing where no apology was due, lack of response when apologizing wasn’t recognized and I hope you get it so far but lack of compassion and understanding with differing belief systems within my family.

There have also been son cutting off father and sisters on both sides of the situation. I’m in there somewhere but it doesn’t matter; all that matters is that I was perplexed today and last night and didn’t get much sleep. Searching my phone for who I could talk to. Tried many people of all walks of faith to no avail. My answer was yet to come from the most unlikely place in someone who is not spiritual.  But unlike the people of faith who I have leaned on before with good results today none of them measured up. But my secular friend did. I have prayed very hard about this situation and although it hasn’t been resolved to anybodys’ liking, I Am at peace with what to do. To let time be the healer the miracle I need. And to have compassion to all in the family. I still may not know what to do so I will do nothing.  There is no easy answer here. 
Shifting now away from the situation at hand to my belief system. After this kind friend said the words I needed to hear I kinda wish I could be secular too but alas as a bird can’t be but a bird I know today that God has touched down in my life in little and big ways. It is how I was raised and my schizophrenic mind delights in the many miracles of God. 
So I will stay my spiritual course and be happy to have secular friends to check in with when it is quiet from heaven. 
Wishing you all peace love light and joy 🥲 Victoria