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After an Attempt

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after an attemptLots of emotions swirl around after a suicide attempt. The young person who attempted to end his/her life may feel guilty or ashamed. Most feel relieved that they did not die. Family members and friends may be angry or judgmental, asking how could this have happened. Worry about if or when there might be another suicide attempt is common.

A youth who has attempted to end his/her life has a higher risk of later dying by suicide; research has shown that between 5 and 11 percent of people who survive a suicide attempt go on to die from suicide.


What you should know and do:

  • Reduce the risk of self-harm or suicide at the family home by removing any guns;
  • Only keep small quantities of medications on hand or lock them in a cabinet and remove unused or expired medications;
  • Keep only small quantities of alcohol in the home;
  • Build supports for the child/youth who attempted suicide through counseling, family, friends, and community resources;
  • Be aware of "triggers", such as school, relationships or sports;

Being "strong" and providing that important "safety net" and a vision of hope for the suicidal youth can be emotionally exhausting. It is important that friends and family members get help from others. Utilize friends, relatives, and community resources; no one should handle this on their own!

Resources for help might include:

National Alliance for the Mentally Ill 1-800-950 NAMI (6264)
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
LGBTQ Crisis Helpline - The Trevor Project 1-866-4-U-TREVOR (444-7386)
National Mental Health Association 1-800-969-NMHA (6642)
Suicide Prevention Action Network 1-202-449-3600

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