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Coping with Suicidal Thoughts: The First Steps

Step #1: Promise not to do anything right now

Even though you’re in a lot of pain right now, give yourself some distance between thoughts and action. Make a promise to yourself: I will wait 24 hours and won’t do anything drastic during that time. Or, wait a week.

Thoughts and actions are two different things—your suicidal thoughts do not have to become a reality. There is no deadline, no one pushing you to act on these thoughts immediately. Wait. Wait and put some distance between your suicidal thoughts and suicidal action.

 

Step #2: Avoid drugs and alcohol

Suicidal thoughts can become even stronger if you have taken drugs or alcohol. It is important to not use nonprescription drugs or alcohol when you feel hopeless or are thinking about suicide.

 

Step #3: Make your home safe

Remove things you could use to hurt yourself, such as pills, knives, razors, or firearms. If you are unable to do so, go to a place where you can feel safe. If you are thinking of taking an overdose, give your medicines to someone who can return them to you one day at a time as you need them.

 

Step #4: Take hope—people DO get through this

Even people who feel as badly as you are feeling now manage to survive these feelings. Take hope in this. There is a very good chance that you are going to live through these feelings, no matter how much self-loathing, hopelessness, or isolation you are currently experiencing. Just give yourself the time needed and don’t try to go it alone.

 

Step #5: Don’t keep these suicidal feelings to yourself

Many of us have found that the first step to coping with suicidal thoughts and feelings is to share them with someone we trust. It may be a friend, a therapist, a member of the clergy, a teacher, a family doctor, a coach, or an experienced counselor at the end of a helpline. Find someone you trust and let them know how bad things are. Don’t let fear, shame, or embarrassment prevent you from seeking help. Just talking about how you got to this point in your life can release a lot of the pressure that’s building up and help you find a way to cope.

Join our weekly Group Support for Suicidal Thoughts & Feelings. Click here to find out more.

Find Immediate Support under Emergency Contacts in our Info centre

Source: http://www.helpguide.org/articles/suicide-prevention/suicide- help-dealing- with-your- suicidal-thoughts-and- feelings.htm


Article Comments

  • "I have advice for anyone with suicidal thoughts is speak to someone you trust and don't self harm cause it makes things worse for you and people around you."
  • - Louise-kessack25 (9th of April 2016, 08:01:05 PM)
  • "I have advice for anyone with suicidal thoughts is speak to someone you trust and don't self harm cause it makes things worse for you and people around you."
  • - Louise-kessack25 (9th of April 2016, 08:01:07 PM)
  • "Easier said than done"
  • - Tritton1 (20th of September 2016, 12:02:21 AM)
  • "Put out your thoughts and feelings in writing until you get tired... or cry and cry until you get tired... then sleep with soft music."
  • - Mylene (3rd of February 2017, 04:53:49 AM)

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