How to save a friend from the brink.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how we can prevent our friends and loved ones from taking their own lives (due to the number of celebrity suicides lately), and CNN publishes this:

For five days, Alexis Moore carefully planned how she would take her own life. She’s not a violent person, so she knew handguns were out. She settled on vodka instead, to be followed by a bottle of Xanax. She did it methodically. First, she says she drank the vodka for two hours. Then she lined up the 20 pills on the kitchen counter, taking a few at a time, going to her bedroom to cry and then coming back for more Xanax. After about six pills, just when she was beginning to feel woozy and lethargic, Moore heard a knock on the door and someone calling her name. She ignored him, even though she recognized the voice as someone she’d meet three days before at a business event. Then the man came around and banged on her bedroom window. She got up off the bed where she’d been sobbing and let him in. They sat down in her living room. She talked. He listened. By the end of the evening, she decided not to take her life. In the five years since, she’s never tried to commit suicide again.

What to say and do:

Tell her you don’t want her to die.

Send a card.

Say “I’m here.”

Bring a meal.

Don’t leave her alone.

Don’t say “I know how you feel.”

Don’t say “Just snap out of it.”

Don’t say “There was an earthquake in Haiti. Your situation isn’t that bad.”

Don’t ignore it. Don’t keep secrets.

How to save a friend from the brink.