Resources for Suicide Prevention

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal ideation or thoughts of harming yourself, help is out there. Below are resources for suicide prevention that you can use for yourself or pass along to someone you know.

National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline – 988

The first resource to become familiar with is the national suicide and crisis lifeline. As of July 16th, 2020, the number 988 turned live. Previously, the only number available was 1-800-273-TALK (8255). The longer number will continue to also function indefinitely alongside 988 as a number one can dial to reach the lifeline, however, 988 is now available as a faster option one can dial in order to reach a suicide prevention specialist.

Other Functions of 988

The national suicide and cisis lifeline can also be reached via text and chat.

Suicide Prevention Resources for Youth

The dangers of suicide among young people is sometimes underestimated, but it’s the second leading cause of death for people between the ages of 10 and 24. The experiences of young people are valid, and you deserve to get help. Below are some ideas for how to keep yourself or the young person in your life safe.

Suicide Prevention Resources for LGBTQ+

People in the LGBTQ+ community are at a high risk of suicide and other mental health struggles due to a number of complex factors. Resources are out there if you are experiencing some of those struggles, or if you are trying to provide support to an LGBTQ+ person in your life. Some of these resources include:

Guides for Allies

Suicide Prevention Resources for Veterans

Serving in and leaving the military can cause a difficult time in one’s life. If this is you, you’re not alone. Crisis can arise anytime, and it’s okay to look for resources. Some resources and tips that may be helpful include:

  • Veterans Crisis Line – Dial 988 and then press option 1.
  • National Resource Directory – This directory contains validated resources that support recovery, rehab, and reintegration for veterans, their family, and their caregivers.
  • VA Local Resources – This directory can help veterans find local counseling, benefits assistance, and other resources such as support groups.
  • Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator – This is a confidential and anonymous source of information for those looking for potential treatment of mental health struggles or substance abuse issues.
  • How to Create a Safety Plan – This resource is helpful for creating a safety plan to create coping skills ahead of a crisis.

Suicide Prevention Resources for Post Partum

Pregnancy and postpartum can be difficult for new moms. It’s important to have resources ready. If you need help, check out these resources below or call the national suicide and crisis lifeline.

Suicide Prevention for the Black Community

Studies show that suicide rates among the black community has been increasing faster than any other racial/ethnic group. Complex factors such as barriers to care and treatment due to structural racism lead to outcomes like only one in three black adults receiving needed care. See the resources below to utilize for yourself if you’re in crisis or to pass along if needed.

  • Therapy for Black Girls – This resource is a tool that can help find therapists specific to the common needs of black girls.
  • Therapy for Black Men – This resource is a tool that can help find therapists specific to the common needs of black men.
  • Center for Healing Racial Trauma – Healing Trauma can be vital to suicide prevention. This resource offers services and training to help marginalized communities heal.
  • BEAM – Black Emotional and Mental Health Collective – This institution builds grants, holds trainings, and builds movements to help heal the black community.
  • Black Mental Health Alliance – This resource provides resources and community education about healing practices and culturally relevant approaches to racial challenges as well as empowering the black community.

Suicide Prevention Resources for Neurodivergent Individuals

  • Neurodiversity Network – This resource contains comprehensive information on where you can find yourself or someone you know help with mental health struggles that you may be facing. This includes crisis numbers, blogs where you can connect with others, and more.
  • Autism & Warning Signs of Suicide – This resource helps yourself and others become aware of what it might look like if an autistic person is contemplating suicide and what to do to intervene to help yourself or them.
  • Autistic Self Advocacy Network – Because autism is sometimes misunderstood or ignored by healthcare professionals, it’s important to know how to self-advocate for your own mental wellness. The Autistic Self Advocacy Network has many resources to educate on your rights, how to stand up for yourself, and updates on various laws and other things going on in the world that could impact you.

People who are neurodivergent, such as those who are autistic, have ADHD, or other disorders, may experience the world differently than neurotypicals (people without those conditions). This can bring on unique challenges and mental health struggles. Below are some resources for neurotypical individuals.

Suicide Prevention Resources for Older Adults and Seniors

Suicide attempts are often more lethal in older adults than younger adults. Depression and suicidal thoughts do not discriminate, and you can struggle no matter your age. Suicide rates are particularly high among older men, with men over the age of 85 and older having the highest rate of any group in the country. If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, there is help available. Take a look at the resources below that may be helpful for yourself or someone you know.

  • Institute on Aging: Friendship Line – This resource is a 24/7 crisis line available
    specifically for people aged 60 years and older and adults living with disabilities. They also provide wellness checks and other outreach services for older adults.
  • Suicide Prevention Alliance – This resource holds information on older adult suicide and a compilation of resources and informative material.
  • United Way 211 – Note that this is not a crisis number, however, this resource is helpful in a number of ways. If you or a senior is struggling, the number 211 can be called to reach a phone representative in your area to find local mental health resources or even social services such as rental assistance or other assistance for issues that may be causing stress.

Working in Mental Health

While there are many ways to help individuals who are struggling with mental health challenges, becoming a marriage and family therapist will provide you with the skillset needed to more directly assist those in need. The following list includes MFT programs that have been accredited by COAMFTE, which is the major accrediting body for marriage and family therapy programs. The cost of MFT programs can also be high, so we have put together a guide on finding affordable mft programs in your area or online.

Other General Suicide Prevention Resources

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

Suicide Prevention – Center for Disease Control and Prevention

National Institute of Mental Health Suicide Prevention

MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health

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