1. People who commit suicide want to die
No. They are struggling with issues so overwhelming they see dying as the only way to make the pain stop. If they can get help to resolve the issues people generally would rather live.
2. People who talk about suicide don’t commit suicide
Not true. Verbalizing suicidal thoughts or intents can and often is a cry for help. If the person does not get the help they are asking for they may very well follow through.
3. More common in women than men
Women attempt more suicide but they use softer (pills) methods which allow more time for them to be helped after an attempt. Men complete more suicide because their methods lead to more instant death (gun) which allows less time to help after an attempt.
4. Can it be inherited or is it contagious?
No. Having people in your life commit suicide starts to normalize the behavior thus making it more acceptable
5. People to attempt may try again
Yes. A person who has attempted suicide is susceptible to repeated efforts to try to finish the job. This is especially true in the days following an attempt.
6. Suicide is for the weak
No. It takes a lot of courage to do something like that.
7. People who are depressed will kill themselves
No. Many people who attempt suicide suffer from depression but most people who suffer from depression do not attempt or even consider suicide.
8. Suicide only happens in certain racial groups.
No. Suicide exists in society at large. If your racial group or community exists, suicide is possible in that group or community. Denying the existence of suicide only makes it less likely that people in that group or community will get help when they need it.
9. Suicide is for teens
No. In the past adolescents/young adults and the elderly had the highest rates of suicide. Recent findings show that suicide rates among middle aged adults (35-64) are climbing.
10. Rich people or people who have “everything”
There’s no such thing as people who have everything. And suicide has no socioeconomic limitations.
What you can do
- Keep your eyes open
- Don’t be afraid to speak up- It’s ok to ask someone if they’re suicidal
- Enlist the help of those who can have an impact
- Don’t promise to keep it a secret
- Make sure the person feels supported
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide please call 1-800-273-TALK(8255) to get immediate help 24/7