Updated: Apr 1
Break the chains of limiting beliefs and misconceptions about suicide by hearing the truth behind some of the most damaging myths.
Instead of perpetuating harmful stereotypes that only add to the isolation those at risk feel, let's work together to eliminate the stigma and provide support for those who need it most.
Check out each myth to dispel the falsehoods and gain a better understanding of the reality behind suicide.
Myth: Asking someone if they're suicidal might give them the idea and encourage it
Truth: Did you know that talking about suicide could actually save a life? The stigma of suicide can be reduced when we open up the conversation about it.
Also, asking someone if they're having suicidal thoughts can be crucial in helping them seek the help they need.
It may seem scary or uncomfortable to broach the topic, but it's much safer to ask than to ignore the signs.
Remember to approach the conversation with care, but don't hesitate to reach out and offer support.
Your words may give someone the permission and reassurance they need to get through a tough time.
Myth: If a person is serious about killing themselves, then there's nothing you can do
Truth: Suicidal thoughts can be overwhelming and all-consuming, but it is essential to remember that they are often fleeting.
People who experience suicidal feelings generally don't want their life to end; they just wish the current situation or emotions would disappear.
That's why talking through other options with someone experienced in mental health crises can make a world of difference.
We need as many people as possible willing to step into these situations for those affected by them to find relief long before professional help arrives.
Myth: People who threaten suicide are just seeking attention
Truth: When someone mentions suicide, we must listen and take action.
They could be hurting deeply and have lost all hope. It's important to acknowledge that most people who die by suicide have expressed their feelings beforehand.
We should never brush off comments about suicide as a mere cry for attention. In fact, giving them the attention they need is crucial, as it could ultimately save their life.
Myth: Most suicides happen with no warning
Truth: It's a sad fact that warning signs often precede suicides, but it's also a hopeful one.
We can help those struggling by paying attention to the verbal and behavioural cues they're giving us.
Sometimes the signs are subtle and only noticeable to those closest to the person, so it's important to stay vigilant and be prepared to ask if someone is considering suicide.
It may not be an easy conversation, but it could save a life. Don't let the warning signs go unnoticed – you have the power to make a difference.
Myth: People thinking about suicide are insane or mentally ill
Truth: It's a staggering statistic - one in five people have considered suicide at some point in their life.
But even more troubling is that not all who ultimately take their own lives have been diagnosed with a mental illness.
Of course, some need psychiatric support to manage their mental health challenges. But there's more to the story, and it's a multifaceted one at that.
From individual struggles to relationship stresses, community pressures, and societal issues, many factors can push a person towards that precipice.
Suicide is a complex topic, and we must all work to understand and support those around us who may be struggling.
Myth: People who die by suicide are selfish and take the easy way out
Truth: Men contemplating ending their lives are grappling with intense despair and hopelessness.
These feelings are so consuming that suicide may seem the only way out. They may carry a deep sense of worthlessness and of being a burden on those around them.
It's a heart-wrenching struggle that requires compassion and support to overcome.
Myth: Once an individual is suicidal, he or she will always remain suicidal
Truth: When the weight of unbearable emotions and thoughts becomes too much to bear, suicide may seem like the only way out.
But here's the good news: feelings of suicidal ideation are often short-lived. They can be interrupted with timely support and intervention. Sure, some folks may experience these feelings intermittently throughout their lives.
Still, with proper treatment, they can lead successful and fulfilling lives. The key is to remember that when it comes to suicide, things can change very quickly.
So hold tight and know that there's always support waiting for you.