24 Aug “My friend tried to commit suicide” : How to Respond
The warning signs are not always there when someone is thinking about ending their life, and it can come as quite a shock to friends and family when someone does go to these extreme measures. If your friend attempts suicide, it is going to be a hard, emotional time for everyone. However, there are some things you can do to make it better and let your friend know you are there for them.
The best thing you can do for your friend is let them know you are always there for them, whether they need someone to just sit with them, a shoulder to cry on or someone to open up to. Be especially available to your friend during this time; always respond to calls and text messages and do not blow them off.
It is going to be hard to relate to your friend during this time, and while you won’t be able to put yourself in their emotional shoes, you can still be understanding of their situation and feelings. Your friend is probably scared and depressed, so be understanding of that and their extreme vulnerability. Let them know that no matter what, you’re there for them.
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You want to do what you can to keep your friend safe after their suicide attempt. This means keeping them away from any triggers such as alcohol, drugs and negativity. Watch out for any warning signs that may have been missed or were not prevalent before their first attempt. These include a lack of motivation, hopelessness, deep depression, and self-destructive behavior.
Feel and Grieve
This is a time for grieving. You didn’t lose your friend, but suicide is a traumatic event for everyone close to the person. Let yourself feel what you’re feeling and try not to bottle all your emotions up inside. Talk to someone, journal and do whatever it takes for you to start to feel like yourself again.
Your friend should be receiving medical help from mental health specialists after their attempt. Look up the hospital visiting hours and let your friend know when you’re coming by—make it a regular thing so you both are prepared and have something to look forward to. Continue your support even after they’re released from the hospital. It’s going to take some time for them to completely recover.
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