Talking to your teen about suicide

Talking to your teen about suicide or other mental health issues:

Actively listen to your child and validate what they feel.

Try not to freak out.

Ask your child clarifying questions to get a better idea of what the situation is.

Let your teen have plenty of input on what their treatment plan looks like.

Figure out a communication system that works for you

Know the risk factors

Know the warning signs:

  • Acting out of character
  • Loss of interest in things they care about
  • Saying they feel hopeless, helpless or worthless
  • Giving away prized possessions
  • Hinting at not being around in the future or saying good-bye
  • Talking about suicide

Know what to ask.

Be a safe place for your teenager.

Find support for yourself.

Ask open-ended questions.

Note any behavioral changes (positive or negative).

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