“I have opened a door that can never be shut. How will I ever get her to trust me again?”
19 out of 20 people who attempt to end their lives will fail.
These survivors will be at a 37% higher risk of suicide.
Anger, shame, guilt, fear, minimization and avoidance are few of the reactions they evoke.
The taboo associated with the act might make them feel even more isolated. Their families may not know how and where to access support for themselves and their loved one. The ones closest to them may feel drained, stressed, exhausted and let down. The trust between the two might be deeply damaged.
Their relationship might reach an all time low, just when it needs to be solid.
Both need to take responsibility for their own well-being and that of each other.
Here are a few useful resources.
Supporting someone after a suicide attempt:
Advice for those who survived:
Health and social care, care of the elderly, care homes, care in the community, child care, nursing care, residential care, respite care … The word ‘care’ is used everywhere but what does it mean?
The Cambridge Dictionary defines it as ‘the process of protecting someone or something and providing what that person or thing needs’ and ‘serious attention, especially to the details of a situation or thing’.
Synonyms: caution, attentiveness, alertness, vigilance, observance, responsibility, forethought, mindfulness, regard.
Medicine and nursing are caring vocations. Yet, they are jobs like any other. They pay a salary for a service rendered. The care element can potentially become optional as long as all the boxes are ticked.
‘Continuity of care’ is particularly tricky in mental health as relationships are based on trust and every time a new person takes over a caring role, all the facts need to be repeated and trust re-established, starting from scratch.
Now that I belong to a network of mothers and fathers who have lost their children to suicide, one common theme emerges: “It seems that our sons and daughters didn’t need more resources, more GP’s or more psychiatrists or more nurses. They just needed more care…”
Let’s not use the word carelessly.