Myths and Facts
Many popular myths exist about suicide exist today. These myths interfere with treatment and the rescuing of those who need help. Below are some of these myths.
“People who talk about suicide don’t complete suicide.”
Many people who talk about suicide are signaling to the outside world that regardless of how they appear on the surface, they are in great pain on the inside. They often see no way out except ending their lives. If someone is talking about killing himself or herself, one of the best things you can do is find them professional help immediately.
“People who attempt or complete suicide are weak or immoral.”
Those who attempt suicide are simply without hope and need the help and encouragement of others in order to gain that hope again.
“Suicidal people simply need to know that their problems aren’t that bad.”
The suicidal person views his/her problems, issues, and life through his or her own perspective and is unlikely to be convinced that his or her problems are “not that severe.” In fact, this suggestion is liable to alienate the person.
“Some people just commit suicide for little or no reason.”
Some personal reasons are very intense.The person’s reason means something to him or her. He/she needs your support and professional help as well.
“Someone who unsuccessfully attempted suicide won’t try again.”
A failed suicide will not in and of itself necessarily prevent a repeat of the attempt.
“Talking to a depressed person about suicide will put the idea into his/her head.”
Talking about the issues involved in a person’s depression or asking whether the person is suicidal will not lead to the suicidal act. It may help him / her to step back.
“Suicidal tendencies are inherited.”
While a tendency toward depression may be condition suicidal tendencies are not.
“Suicide statements or actions are bids for attention or manipulation.”
As no one else can see the world from inside the person’s eyes, the chance that this is true can’t be taken. Even “staged” suicidal attempts have been known to be completed by accident.