Are you feeling suicidal?
No matter what problems you are dealing with, we want to help you find a reason to keep living. By calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) you’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor at a crisis center in your area, anytime 24/7.
When You Should Call
If you feel like you are in crisis, no matter how big or small, we want you to call. You should call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) immediately if you have any of the following warning signs:
- Feeling like you want to die or to kill yourself.
- Looking for a way to kill yourself, such as searching for methods online or buying a gun.
- Feeling hopeless or like you have no reason to live.
- Feeling trapped or feeling like you cannot bear the pain.
- Feeling like you are a burden to others.
- Drinking more alcohol and using drugs.
- Feeling anxious or agitated.
- Sleeping too little or too much.
- Feeling like you can’t talk to anyone and would rather be alone.
- Wanting to seek revenge.
- Having extreme mood swings
Source: The Jed Foundation
Suicide Warning Signs
The following signs may mean someone is at risk for suicide. The risk of suicide is greater if a behavior is new or has increased and if it seems related to a painful event, loss, or change. If you or someone you know exhibits any of these signs, seek help as soon as possible by calling the Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
- Talking about wanting to die or to kill themselves.
- Looking for a way to kill themselves, such as searching online or buying a gun
- Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.
- Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain.
- Talking about being a burden to others.
- Increasing the use of alcohol or drugs.
- Acting anxious or agitated; behaving recklessly.
- Sleeping too little or too much.
- Withdrawing or isolating themselves.
- Showing rage or talking about seeking revenge.
- Displaying extreme mood swings.
How can a safety plan help?
Suicidal thoughts can seem like they will last forever – but for many, these thoughts and feelings pass. Having a plan in place that can help guide you through difficult moments can make a difference and keep you safe. Ideally, such a plan is developed jointly with your counselor or therapist. It can also be developed with a Lifeline counselor who can help you write down actions to take and people to contact in order to feel safe from suicide. In general, a safety plan is designed so that you can start at step one and continue through the steps until you feel safe. You should keep your plan in a place where you can easily access it (your wallet or cell phone) when you have thoughts of hurting yourself.
The following are essential elements to explore and include in the development of your safety plan*:
1. Recognize warning signs: What sorts of thoughts, images, moods, situations, and behaviors indicate to you that a crisis may be developing? Write these down in your own words.
2. Use your own coping strategies – without contacting another person: What are some things that you can do on your own to help you not act on thoughts/urges to harm yourself?
3. Socialize with others who may offer support as well as distraction from the crisis: Make a list of people (with phone numbers) and social settings that may help take your mind off things.
4. Contact family members or friends who may help to resolve a crisis: Make a list of family members (with phone numbers) who are supportive and who you feel you can talk to when under stress.
5. Contact mental health professionals or agencies: List names, numbers and/or locations of clinicians, local emergency rooms, crisis hotlines – carry the Lifeline number 1-800-273-8255
6. Ensure your environment is safe: Have you thought of ways in which you might harm yourself? Work with your counselor to develop a plan to limit your access to these means.
*Adapted from the Safety Plan Template developed by Barbara Stanley and Gregory K. Brown – see Safety Plan Template
Resources & Websites
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please immediately call 911 or call campus safety at (610) 409-3333 or go directly to the nearest hospital emergency room.