Module 2: Recognizing Suicide Risk

Does Talking about Suicide Increase or Decrease Risk?

talkingIt is widely believed that if someone is talking about attempting suicide that, in fact, he or she will not really do it.
This is false.

Talking about ending one’s life or a desire to die is the first suicide warning sign on the lifeline’s list for a reason: the person should be taken very seriously and you should take steps to make sure the person is safe.

It is important to note that talking to someone about suicide, on the other hand, does not increase his or her risk. When we work on how to interact with someone you suspect may be at risk, in module 3 of this course, we will go over this very important issue in greater detail. But it merits an initial mention here: raising the subject does not, in and of itself, increase risk.