What to do after an attempt by a family member.
People who attempt suicide are trying to escape a difficult life situation and experiencing unbearable pain. Most people feel extremely ashamed or guilt after they have attempted suicide. The reaction by family members can make all the difference.
After a suicide attempt, your loved one is probably feeling tremendous emotional pain and there is no reason to make them feel worse. Without supporting their actions, you can support the person by cariing about them.
Talking to someone after an attempt can be difficult.
Help reassure them that you care. Make statements such as, “I’m sorry you felt that way and I wish I could have helped you,” “I’m sorry I didn’t realize you were in such pain,” “I can’t imagine how bad you felt,” or “I want to help you, tell me what I can do to help you now.”
Ask them what would be helpful. Have an open dialogue asking the person how they want loved ones to assist in the recovery process. Consider having your loved one make a survival kit, of items that will help comfort them and represent safety for times when they may think about suicide again.
What about your feelings after a loved one attempts suicide?
When a loved one attempts suicide, it is traumatic and it affects everybody. You may feel all or some of the feelings listed below, or perhaps there are images you cannot get out of your head.