For help in dealing with a suicidal crisis right now, please call or text 988 to reach the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.
If you love someone who has suicidal thoughts, you may struggle with profound fear of saying or doing the wrong thing. You desperately want to help, but you're unsure of where to start. This book can guide you as you support your loved one--without sacrificing your own needs and well-being. You'll find the answers to some of your most urgent questions, including:
- What are signs and clues of suicide risk?
- How do I talk with my loved one about their suicidal thoughts?
- When should I call the police?
- What do I say and do after a suicide attempt?
- What treatments for suicidality are available?
- How can I help the person I care about stay safe?
- What can I do to help them feel better, too?
- What can I do to cope better?
- What does recovery look like after a suicidal crisis?
Written by a psychotherapist with decades of clinical experience in suicidology, this compassionate guide offers essential communication techniques you can use to help your loved one, as well as strategies for navigating your own stress, worry, fear, and anxiety. Drawn from cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), and mindful self-compassion, the tools in this book will help you recognize warning signs, improve communication, create a safety plan, know when to seek professional help, and support a loved one in crisis.
About the Author
Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW, is a psychotherapist and consultant in private practice in Denver, CO, and an associate professor at the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work. Freedenthal focuses her work on helping people who experience suicidal thoughts or behavior. She authored Helping the Suicidal Person: Tips and Techniques for Professionals, and she created the website, Speaking of Suicide.Foreword writer David A. Jobes, PhD, is professor of psychology, associate director of clinical training, and director of the Suicide Prevention Laboratory at The Catholic University of America. He created Collaborative Assessment and Management of Suicidality (CAMS), which is a suicide-focused clinical treatment supported by extensive clinical trial research.