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We get it, you care

“My friends and family felt helpless and didn’t know what to do, how to help me when they first learned about my suicide attempt”.- Akash Ramchandani, Founder, HOBS Foundation

Suicide can be prevented most of the time if we know the ‘signs’ and ‘how to help our loved ones.’ It can differ from person to person but we have covered the basics that you should know if your loved one is going through a tough time.

You can also always book a session to talk to an expert on how to help your loved one.

Skills that you need while helping a loved one overcome suicide

Being a caregiver, there are certain skills that can take us a long way ahead on the road to wellness and growth not only for the individual currently caring about but our own self. A few of these skills are:


It is very important to understand that many times they aren’t in control of their words or actions. Hence, it’s important to understand from their perspective how difficult survival is for them.

Non judgemental listening, care and support

It’s crucial to be non-judgemental as labeling them can only worsen their mental health. So, kindly believe what they are saying, instead of labeling them as cowards or attention seekers. Also, try to listen to them as much as possible instead of giving advice.


Suicide might take one minute but its intensity and condition have developed over a period of time. It’s necessary to give the person their own time to heal.


Ask them direct questions! Give them space to answer those questions. Make sure to communicate effectively and let them know that they are loved, understood, cared for and that you want them to heal and 

Problem solving and conflict resolution

The person going through the tough phase might not be in the position to make decisions or think of right or wrong. They must just act upon impulses at times. A caregiver needs to understand this and take it upon himself/herself as much as possible to resolve their conflict.

Guideline for Caregivers

A report published by the World Health Organisation in 2019 declared Suicide as the 19th leading cause of global deaths round the world. Two years later, the collective response remains the same: unpreparedness disguised under ignorance, denial and stigma. Thus, as a result, when the time, unfortunately, comes, either there is inability to recognise the red flags and risk factors or inability to navigate such an overwhelming situation. Understanding how to respond at times of need not only prepares us but potentially can save a valued human life. Let us look at potential scenarios you might come across:

I.When someone brings up or hints about having suicidal thoughts –

II.When you have close relationship with the individual –

III. When you get in touch in the midst or just after a suicide attempt-

When someone is going through a period of active suicidal ideation or is unable to manage with the impulse alone

Try to stay as calm as possible.
● Make sure the environment is physically safe and free of any intended object/s of
potential harm
● Make sure the environment is emotionally safe and free of any trigger associated with
the same.
● Inquire them what they require at the moment and what can help.
● Try to talk to them about what they are feeling and provide a non-judgemental listening
ear, allowing a space to vent out if necessary.
● Do not leave them alone till physical safety is assured. If they are on the other end of the
telephone or email, discuss if they could be with someone trusted.
● Encourage them to contact crisis helpline or emergency services
● Encourage them to use the coping and distraction strategies if discussed previously. If
not a few of the strategies could be:
– Holding a conversation
– Reminding them of positive moments
– Indulging in any activity together

Care Giver's Stress

  1. Being a caregiver for a loved one with suicidal ideation can be one of the greatest protective factors in their life. With this responsibility for them though, comes responsibility for self as well.
  2. Working on yourself and with your own self can considerably improve your own state of mind.
  3. Prepare and work on a personal self-care routine regularly involving all domains: physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, occupational, social.
  4. Be honest with your own emotions and remember you are a human too. We all are prone to certain overwhelming emotions during distress or when things do not go well. Working with suicidal ideation can take time and thus require patience for all those involved in the dynamic.
  5. Refrain from holding yourself guilty for the way you feel. It is only normal to feel that way. Develop your own social support and draw strength from them. Remember if you are grounded, you can work and provide quality assistance and create the space they actually need.
Please let us know if it helped you. We would love to hear from you as it would help us improvise the kit and provide people better help
All the information you have shared with us will be confidential
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