Read the article here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28001610/
(I only pasted the end part)
Back From The Brink
Leading suicide expert Lisa Firestone, Ph.D., director of research and education at the Glendon Association, details suicide's progression, and how to halt it.
1. Losing interest in school, work, or hobbies
"A male friend won't tell you he's sad, but he will tell you if he's lost interest in his hobbies," says John Draper, Ph.D., director of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. "Disruptions in those areas are real signs."
What he's thinking: What's the use? My work doesn't matter anymore. Why bother even trying? Nothing matters anyway.
Warning signs: Decreased work or academic performance, giving up hobbies or other previously enjoyed activities.
Don't: Cajole or demean. Nor should you assume that this is just a slump, and wait for things to pass.
Do: Gently but persistently point out that he may have a problem, and that treatments are readily available.
2. Directing hatred toward himself
"Tearing oneself apart creates the psychological pain and desperation that drive the suicidal person," says Firestone. "Suicide becomes a way to escape the pain and aggravation." I'm incompetent, stupid.
What he's thinking: I'm ugly, disgusting. I'm a fool, a creep, a reject. I don't deserve anything; I'm worthless.
Warning signs: Statements of helplessness, extreme psychological pain, desperation, increased irritability and anger.
Don't: Judge, turn away, or otherwise feel that these are feelings "real men" shouldn't have or talk about.
Do: Listen. Allow him to express his feelings. Offer him a more com- passionate evaluation of himself.
3. Feeling like a burden to family and friends
"I've had patients insist in front of their wives, 'No, no, you'll be better off without me,'" says David A. Jobes, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at the Catholic University of America. "Family members don't feel that way."
What he's thinking: See how bad I make everyone around me feel? They'd be better off without me. I'll just stay away and stop bothering them.
Warning signs: Moodiness, lack of communication, lethargy, exhaustion, hopelessness.
Don't: Ask vague questions like, "You're not thinking about doing anything, are you?" This telegraphs disapproval.
Do: Talk openly. Ask, "Are you thinking about killing yourself?" If his answer doesn't sit right, ask him again.
4. Talking about suicidal thoughts
"As simple as it sounds, talking about wanting to die by suicide is a very clear and dangerous warning sign," say Joiner. Unfortunately, that sign is often missed or ignored.
What he's thinking: I'd better plan it. It's the only thing I can do. I have to buy a gun and then find a deserted back road, maybe. Reading or writing about death, reminiscing about a dead person, saying things like, "I might as well be dead."
Don't: Assert that suicide is immoral and leave it there. He desperately needs help. Don't let him reassure you he's fine.
Do: Empathize with the pain but not the solution. Find a counselor. Call the hotline numbers.
5. Initiating his own demise
"People can become so despondent, and yet they hide intentions," says Eric Caine, M.D., co-director of the Center for the Study of Prevention of Suicide at the University of Rochester. "They might tell a doctor they're fine."
What he's thinking: I can't even do this! I've thought about this long enough. Look, I'm miserable every minute. Just end it. It's the only way out!
Warning signs: Preparing a note, a will, or both; giving away prized possessions.
Don't: Be sworn to secrecy. What's more important: his confidence or his life?
Do: Remove means (guns, pills, poisons). Connect him with crisis counselors. Time is running out.
6. Sudden, dramatic mood change — for the better
"In his own mind, he may finally be at peace with his decision — not the decision to seek help, but the one to end it all," says Firestone.
What he's thinking: This is the solution to all my problems. I have made my decision. I am in control now. All this pain will soon be over.
Warning signs: An unexpected, even jarring brightening of his disposition, especially one that doesn't feel natural to you.
Don't: Think, Whew, everything's fine now! I can stop worrying about him for a while.
Do: Ask him to give help a chance — tell him he can always decide to kill himself later. Arrange for help immediately!