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Pennsylvania Adult/Older Adult Suicide Prevention Coalition

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Myths & Misconceptions

A lot of myths surround suicide and depression. Often, people believe they are helpless to a person who is suicidal, or that talking about it may nudge the person in the wrong direction. These myths are not true. Educate yourself about these myths and share the truths with others. You may help save a life.


Myth: Those who talk about suicide don't do it.
Not True Most of the people who either attempted or completed suicide have made their intentions known ahead of time by either talking about it or by giving other clues. Talk of suicide should not be ignored or readily dismissed.
Myth: If a person is really intent on killing themselves, there is nothing anybody can do to stop them.
Not True Even the most severely depressed person has mixed feelings about dying and most likely just wants to end the pain they are in, not their lives. Often times if a person in crisis gets the help they need, they will never be suicidal again. Suicide can be prevented in most cases and any act of kindness has the potential to save a life.
Myth: If you talk about suicide, you give people the idea to kill themselves.
Not True Chances are if you're thinking about suicide, they've already thought it too. Asking somebody directly about suicidal thoughts often brings a sense of relief to the suicidal person and helps them to live, not give them ideas to die.
Myth: Only experts or professionals can prevent suicide.
Not True Suicide prevention is everybody's business, and anyone can help prevent the tragedy of suicide.
Click here to read facts and figures about suicide...

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