b. General Observations About Suicide.
(1) The overwhelming majority of suicidal people do not want to die. They
are generally seeking relief from an "intolerable" situation involving more stress or pain
than they can bear.
(2) The "typically" suicidal person wants to be rescued. These persons have
difficulty asking for help, are not certain to whom to turn for help, and do not know what
they specifically want done.
(3) Most persons experience a suicidal episode only once in their lives, and
are acutely suicidal for an extremely brief period. If one can stop them from committing
suicide during this "crisis period," the chances for future attempts are greatly reduced.
Suicidal feelings tend to be episodic.
Three "H" words associated with suicidal thoughts and actions:
Hopelessness: people only kill themselves when their lives are
devoid of hope.
(b) Helplessness: suicidal persons often see themselves as unable to
meaningfully alter their situation.
(c) Haplessness (unhappy): may involve presence of personality
disorders, poor stress tolerance/coping skills, or no resources to help in times of crisis.
Suicidal persons are generally experiencing multiple problems, which are
impacting simultaneously, and thus cannot concentrate on dealing with any
one of them.
c. Danger Signals.
(1) Suicidogenic situation. A suicidogenic situation is when the situation itself
is conducive to suicidal thoughts and feelings.
Cadet Smith ranks at the top of his class at West Point and is the star of
the football team. One weekend, he is in a serious car accident and both
of his legs are amputated.
After being with his company for 20 years, top man in the firm and totally
dedicated to his work, Mr. Executive is suddenly fired without an