PTSD and suicide. For those who had enough.

The main cause of the suicide (including PTSD related suicide) is always a social-psychological maladjustment of the person in result of adverse life circumstances or subjective interpretation of these circumstances as irresoluble.

There are several types of suicide, the main of them are:

  • Demonstrativesuicide, – which aim is not to deprive oneself of life, but rather demonstrate this intent, though not always consciously.
  • Truesuicide, which is aimed at depriving oneself of life. Death appears as a final result, but the degree of desire for death may differ, which is reflected in conditions and degree of implementation of suicidal tendencies.

The second form is quite common in people with PTSD. These people are looking for relief from the severe suffering. A feeling that there is no one who could help never leaves these people.

In some cases, being on the edge of suicide, a person looks outwardly calm and tries to dedicate every minute to his/her family and friends. There was a case, where an officer, a veteran of several local wars, shot himself dead after he took his family to the flashy restaurant.

The leading group of PTSD symptoms, associated with the suicidal behavior include a number of clinical parameters: a painful content of nightmares, limitation or neglect of social contacts, pessimistic view of the future, increased aggression and mainly recurrent depression, a sense of loss and a feeling of hopelessness or anger .

Suicide intervention, demonstrating the “in-between” approach, is a process of preventing an act of self-destruction. Intervention resides in a face-to-face contact with a desperate person and providing the emotional support and empathy in the context of social, psychological and existential crisis.

Suicide intervention tips for the psychologists:

  1. Look for the signs of possible danger: suicidethreats, previous suicide attempts, depression.
  2. Accept the possibility that the patient is a real suicider. Do not assume that he is unable or will not dare to commit a
  3. Establish an empathic relationship. You will make a giant step forward if you accept the position of a desperate man.
  4. Empathic listening. Suicide attempters usually suffer a strong sense of alienation and are not determined to accept the advices. In most cases they are in a need of discussion of their pain.
  5. The absence of conflict. Do not interrupt and do not be aggressive, try not to look shocked of the information received and avoid arguing with the depressed person.
  6. Get to the core of the conflict. Stay calm asking the questions, try to develop a situation, which led to the suicide behavior together.
  7. Keep the adult attitude to what has happened. Do not try to reassure and keep the actual experience.
  8. Look for the vital sources. Each person has something important that helped him/her to cope with the previous difficulties, look for this source together.
  9. Emotional support. Bring hope, – the basis for a realistic hope should be presented honestly, clearly and softly. It is important to emphasize the powers and possibilities of the patient and show him/her that the crisis problems are transitory and suicide is irrevocable.
  10. Assessment of the suicide risk. Try to determine the severity of suicidal behavior of the patient. The more developed a method of suicide is, the higher the potential risk of the suicide.

If you “had enough” and can only think of suicide as a possible solution – there is still one more thing to try. This is not yet another religious bullshit about god, love and angels, but real, solid path to a complete personal transformation and freedom you can not even imagibe. It will require a lot of hard and painful work, but in my experience, people who have nothing to lose, who had enough, who lost all the hope, get the best results – because they don’t hold to their old self any longer. So before you pull the trigger, give yourself one last chance and read below (or click on the banners above), you will quite likely happy you did.

Image by polmuadi (CC BY 2.0)