Terry Burgess, America’s Mid-life Coach for Men with Upward MC
The World Health Organization reports on average there are 800,000 suicides in the World per year which is 1 suicide every 40 seconds.
The MentalHealthAmerica.net website reports suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States with an average of 44,000 completed suicides per year.
However, more surprising is that 19.6% of suicides in the United States are of individuals ages 45 to 64. The next highest percentage are those 85 years and older at 19.4%.
Suicide has recently been brought to the forefront of World news with the deaths of well-known celebrities Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade. Both individuals were a part of the age 45 – 64 group.
This article is not to try to guess why individuals in these age groups have the highest percentages of suicides in America. I will leave that for another day.
I want to shed light on how you can identify individuals who may be showing suicide tendencies and how you can help them.
First off, realize that you probably are not a mental health professional therefore you should leave the real counseling to a counselor.
Here are 6 behaviors which can help you identify if a person is suicidal:
1) They express hopelessness or helplessness in their view of their environment and situation.
2) They use verbal suicide threats (“You would not miss me if I were dead”).
3) They exhibit personality changes or depression tendencies.
4) They have a lack of interest in their future.
5) They give away sentimental/prized possessions.
6) They express risk taking behavior.
If you suspect a person is suicidal you should not ever leave the individual alone. Here are some additional tips to help you deal with the situation:
- First, if you suspect a person is suicidal never leave them alone. If they are on the phone do everything you can to keep them talking.
- Discuss your concerns with the individual.
- Attempt to get the individual to seek professional help.
- Do not agree to keep the information secret to the person.
- Remember, Do not counsel the individual, especially if you are not a counselor.
One of the main keys I have found in my experiences of dealing with suicidal individuals is to let them feel as they are important. Let them direct the interaction. If you are doing an intervention, ensure you let someone know ahead of time and have a plan to let them know if you need to have them help you.
I know these situations are very difficult and scary. However, if you use the guidelines above you may be the one to save a life.
Please feel free to contact him for a complimentary 45-minute coaching session. I can help you develop a simple starting point plan to help you get on the road from your “mid-life crisis or challenges” to your “mid-life rediscovery and renovation” for your life. You can visit http://bit.ly/SchedulewithTerry to schedule you complimentary coaching session!
Coach T is a Personal Leadership and Mid-life Coach with Upward MC in Benton, Kentucky. He can be contacted via e-mail at Terry@upwardmc.com or by phone at 270-493-0967. His website can be found at http://www.terrypburgess.com