This week is Men’s Health Week and Geelong group Right Mate are posting information and strategies each day of the week. “Suicide safety plans – Time to get deep. It’s an uncomfortable topic yes but here at Right Mate, we’re strong advocates for making you comfortable to speak about the uncomfortable.
The reality is that 6 out of the 8 suicides on average EVERY DAY here in Australia…are men or boys, so we need to talk about safety plans as a way of potentially reducing those numbers and below are some tips to consider from the awesome people at Mensline –
- When the plan should be used – Familiarise yourself with what types of situations, thoughts and feelings that might lead to suicidal urges for you. List the warning signs so that you can refer to them when you are deciding on whether to activate your plan
- What you can do to calm/comfort yourself when you are feeling suicidal – List the activities that you know both soothe and comfort you when you are upset
- Create a list for yourself of all your reasons for living – When you are feeling suicidal, it is easy to get caught up in the pain you are feeling and forget the positives in your life. Your list may help you to refocus your attention until the suicidal feelings pass
- Who you can talk to – List names and contact details and include back-ups in case your first choice is unavailable
- Who you can talk to if you need professional assistance – Create a list of professional resources available to you, along with their contact details and availability
- How you can you make your environment safe – This may involve removing or securing any items that you are likely to use to hurt yourself and not doing things that you know make your feelings stronger or make them last longer
- What you can do if you are still not feeling safe – Keep the name and address of your nearest hospital emergency department or telephone crisis line
- Make a safety plan commitment – The last step is to make a commitment to your safety plan. This means committing to yourself that you will follow this plan when the need arises, and then committing aloud to someone else (e.g. your counsellor, a trusted friend) that you will follow this plan. This is also called ‘a safety contract’.
So….tell us….do you have one or are you open to now go away and put one together knowing that it could literally save your life?
From @Chris Lytas, Luke & the Right Mate Committee” Right Mate are a men’s mental health community who share resources. They encourage men and boys to consider your mental health, know you are not alone, to talk to others and that bad times will pass.