Depression encompasses a vast emotional spectrum, ranging in severity from fleeting and treatable mood swings, to deep seated, suicidal thoughts. Suicidal depression is characterized by perpetual morbid thoughts, and the persistent desire to end one’s life.
Many people fail to detect the warning signs associated with this agonizing state of mind. While some sufferers of suicidal depression conceal the condition, others reveal telling signs that signal alarm.
Pay attention to warning signs. If an individual alludes to suicide, even casually or comedically, address this both seriously and wholeheartedly.
Most individuals who commit suicide make references to committing a suicidal act. It is crucial to engage in an open and honest discourse with an individual you suspect to be suicidally depressed.
Many are misguided under the assumption that a suicidal person will reject help and pursue their self-destructive mission regardless of outside help.
However, this is a baseless claim that has lead many astray. Suicides are prevented every day with a delicate balance of empathy, love and professional help.
What To Say To Someone Who Is Suicidally Depressed
#1: If a friend or loved one is suffering from suicidal thoughts, emphasize that you love and care for them. A suicidal mode of thinking normally reflects self-loathing, not a resolute sense of self love.
For this reason, you must prolifically express the level to which you value and care for that individual. During an open dialogue with the individual in question. Take note of their most admirable features, describing everything that you adore and appreciate them.
#2: Emphasize the impact of loss. The human brain responds markedly to the concept of loss, in comparison to gain. Inform them that suicide would devastate their entire familial and friendship network with unremitting sorrow.
Chronicle the years and opportunities that they would miss out on: marriage, children, job opportunities, travelling, new activities, all of the great experiences that typify life.
#3: Take note of the permanence of death. The general public would deter the average person from discussing death with a suicidally depressed individual. However, candor and honesty can only enrich the effectiveness of your dialogue with a depressed person.
Vividly describe that while life situations are transient, death is a permanent state of being that cannot be reversed after a particular point in time.
#4: Many individuals who are suicidally depressed insist that they have made haphazard choices in a purposeless life. When addressing a suicidal person, make sure that you accentuate the importance of purpose, and every human being’s unique role on the planet.
#5: Inform them that they have to power to confront their personal issues, and systematically transform their lives. Every day affords a novel opportunity for empowerment and positivity.
Suicide can be likened to the ultimate sense of victimization, the act of surrendering one’s power to the woes of life. Try to offer them as many empowering words as you possibly can.
#6: Tell the individual that many people have overcome suicidal thoughts, and achieved great success. You may benefit from citing specific, famous figures who beat suicidal depression and later achieved status and wealth.
#7: Inform the individual that their issue is not rooted in life, but rather, their internal state of mind. Once they realize this, they will feel a greater sense of personal agency and make concerted efforts to seize control of their thoughts and their emotions.
#8: If you have personally overcome depression and suicidal thoughts, share your story with them.
Humans respond remarkably to the simple ability to relate to others. As empathetic human beings, we are wired to experience an emotional response akin to the person with whom we are interacting.
#9: Remind them that they are just as valuable and worthy as any other individual on this planet. People who ruminate on suicidal thoughts have disowned their sense of value, instead surrendering to feelings of worthlessness.
#10: Inform them that you believe in them, and hold their strength and wisdom in high regard. This positive reinforcement will impart them with a temporary, motivational fuel that propels them through their recovery.
#11: Inspire a sense of gratefulness in them, by reinforcing the positive facets of their life. Note their positive characteristics, friends, valuable possessions, family members, etc.
#12: Ask them how you can best support them in that moment. Doing so will help attune them with their own psychological and emotional needs, rendering you a more useful source of emotional support.
#13: Try to uncover the basis of their issue, by inquiring about the first time they experienced these feelings.