Experts debunk December suicide myth

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• Threatening to hurt or kill oneself or talking about wanting to hurt or kill oneself.

• Looking for ways to kill oneself by seeking access to firearms, pills or other means.

• Talking or writing about death, dying or suicide when these actions are out of the ordinary for the person.

• Feeling hopeless.

• Feeling rage or uncontrolled anger or seeking revenge.

c Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities - seemingly without thinking.

• Feeling trapped - like there’s no way out.

• Increasing alcohol or drug use.

• Withdrawing from friends, family and society.

• Feeling anxious, agitated or unable to sleep - or sleeping all the time.

• Experiencing dramatic mood changes.

• Seeing no reason for living or having no sense of purpose.

At least one suicide prevention group also has taken to task the way the media reports suicides. The nonprofit Suicide Prevention Resource Center urges those in the media to not glamorize suicide attempts among celebrities or give details of suicides, such as what method a person uses in a suicide attempt. The group also urges the media to stop oversimplifying the reasons for suicides, such as “He was depressed because it was Christmas” or “because his girlfriend broke up with him.”

About the Author
Karen Goldberg Goff

Karen Goldberg Goff

Karen Goldberg Goff has been a reporter at The Washington Times since 1992. She currently writes feature-length stories on a variety of topics, including family issues, pop culture, health, food and technology. Follow Karen on Twitter.

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