Male Survivors

Male Survivors

What to do if you feel like killing yourself

  • Don’t do it! OK, this is easy to say. But the tragedy is that a small number of survivors do kill themselves. This is not only tragic in itself, but also because our experience at Survivors is that, over time, and with support, the pain gets less. You deserve to live.
  • Get help and support. Talk to the people you trust about how you’re feeling. Suicide, like abuse, occurs in isolation. Try to reach out to those you trust.
  • Consider talking to your G.P. Suicidal feelings can be related to depression. Men who’ve been abused often experience bouts of depression. Nowadays doctors regard depression as a treatable illness with anti-depressant medication. Some survivors have found anti-depressants useful in lifting their mood. They’re not the answer to dealing with abuse issues, but they may get you over a rough patch.
  • Decide what structure you need to stay safe. Do you need to be around someone all the time? Do you need to be able to contact someone by phone 24 hours per day? Are there trusted people around you who can do these things for you, and are they willing to do it?
  • Remember that the Samaritans are available 24 hours a day by phone, and sometimes can even offer face to face support. They are usually accepting, don’t judge and are experienced at listening to people who feel despairing.
  • If you feel you need a short spell in hospital to stay safe you’ll probably have to consult your G.P. or another health professional. Consulting such people can be useful but you should be fully informed about the power they possess. People feeling suicidal are usually offered beds on psychiatric wards if there is no additional help to offer them in their own home. But be aware that some professionals also have the power to detain you against your will if you decide you don’t want to go into hospital. If two doctors say you are a danger to yourself and suffering from a mental disorder and a social worker agrees, you can be detained against your will on a psychiatric ward. As a boy you may already have had the experience of something bad being done to you against your will, so the thought that you may again be forced into doing something you don’t want to do may be scary. If you feel you do want to get involved with G.P.s or other mental health professionals, try to take a friend or ally along with you to support you and help you argue for what you want.
  • Try to avoid using alcohol or non-prescribed drugs. If you’re already feeling low, these will only make you feel worse.
  • Try to make an agreement with someone about what you’ll do if you start to feel suicidal. This person could be a trusted friend or a therapist/counsellor. Your agreement with them might include:
  • Who you will ring
  • Where you will go, for instance a safe place to spend the night
  • What measures you will take to reduce your distress e.g. relaxation, medication etc.

CHANGE THEIR WORLD. CHANGE YOURS. THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING.