If you face thoughts of taking your life, you may be tempted to act on them. You might start to believe the thoughts in your head and begin to plan something that perhaps you don’t want to do. Sure, on the one hand, you may want to commit suicide because life feels hard. But on the other hand, taking your life is a big deal. And it’s a problem that can be solved!
You may have heard the phrase that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Often, suicidal thoughts are symptoms of depression, which is an illness that can be treated. With the right tools, you can change an experience of depression into hope, happiness, and health.
If you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts, look for the following warming signs to see if you’re getting close to making a suicide attempt:
- You’re talking about dying.
- You’ve just experienced a recent loss.
- You notice changes in your personality and mood.
- You notice changes in your sleeping and eating patterns.
- You have a fear of losing control.
- You experience low self esteem.
- You don’t feel any hope for the future.
- You’ve made threats of suicide to friends and family.
- You’ve made subtle hints to friends and family like, “I won’t be around much longer” or “It’s hopeless.
- You have an obsession with death.
- You have an overwhelming sense of guilt, shame or rejection.
- You’re starting to put your affairs in order (for example, giving or throwing away favorite possessions).
- Suddenly you feel cheerful because you’ve decided to take your life, which will solve the problem of depression.
- There’s been a dramatic change in your personality or appearance.
- You have high amounts of irritability.
- You experience hallucinations or bizarre thoughts.
- You’ve noticed changes in your school performance.
You Can Get Help.
If you’ve seen any of the above warning signs in your life, here are steps to take in order to protect your life and get help.
- Promise yourself and your family that you don’t do anything right now to hurt yourself. If you’re willing get mental health support for your depression or other condition and see if the suicidal thoughts change.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol. Using substances might only contribute to feelings of impulsivity and the desire to take your life.
- Create a safe environment at home. Be sure to remove anything in your home that could be dangerous or used as a tool for suicide. And if this cannot be done for some reason, then go to a place where you feel safe and stay there.
- Find a glimmer of hope. Many teens get through suicidal thoughts without ever making an attempt. Often the belief that the suicidal thoughts will pass provides a person with a sense of hope. And supportive family and friends can also fuel that light of hope.
- Be sure to have professional support in your life. In the event of an emergency, calling a therapist or psychologist can be very comforting.
- Talk about your suicidal thoughts with someone you trust. Once you’re past a crisis point and you have the help you need, be sure to keep talking about the suicidal thoughts you have with a loved one. Talking about them can ease the pain of having to bear with them.
These are suggestions for teens on how to manage their suicidal thoughts. If possible, get professional support the moment you begin to have any thoughts of suicide or self harm.