Death by suicide among young people is one of the leading causes of death among young people in Canada, but it may be preventable.
Strong feelings of stress, confusion, fear and anxiety can result when young people are faced with problems or obstacles they have trouble managing. This can be anything from family problems, troubles with friends or peers, pressure from school and homework to mental or physical health issues.
We know that talking about it can spread awareness about resources, reduce stigma and encourage people to seek help, and is the first step to take if you are concerned about someone who may be thinking about suicide. Starting a conversation with someone could be difficult, but could encourage them to seek help.
- Acknowledge you’re worried and let them know why you are concerned. Try using a noticing technique, like, “I’ve noticed you are feeling sad quite a bit. Can we talk about what’s going on?”
- Ask about suicide directly, showing care and concern. Let them know what has you concerned. “You seem really down and are talking a lot about feeling worthless. I heard you say you wish you were dead. Sometimes when people feel this way, they are thinking of suicide. Are you thinking about suicide?”
If you are thinking about suicide or if you are worried about someone else who you think is considering suicide, there is help:
- Greater Vancouver: 604-872-3311
- Toll free – Lower Mainland and Sunshine Coast: 1-866-661-3311
- TTY: 1-866-872-0113
- BC-wide: 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433)
- Online Distress Services: www.youthinbc.com, www.crisiscentrechat.ca
For more resources and information, follow @BCChildrensHosp on Twitter.