- Recognize the warning signals.
- Express your concern and your interest
- Offer your support
- Ask directly about the suicidal thoughts. You will not be putting ideas into the person’s mind.
- Take every suicide threat, comment, or action seriously.
- Express that you care.
- Listen. Try to understand what the person is feeling. You do not have to solve the person’s problem or offer advice.
- Encourage the expression of feelings.
- Offer acceptance
- Share your feelings: that you, too, have felt alone, sad, hurt, or hopeless at some time.
- Offer hope that alternatives are available. Be careful not to offer oversimplified or false reassurances which show you do not understand.
- Seek support. Get help. Together identify options and seek someone else with whom you can talk.