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Myths About Suicide

False
True
1. People who talk about suicide rarely actually commit suicide. 1. People who commit suicide often give a clue or warning of their intentions. Anyone who thinks or talks about suicide should seek professional help.
2. The suicidal person wants to die and feels there is no turning back. 2. Suicidal persons often feel ambivalent about dying.
3. There is little correlation between alcohol and suicide. 3. Alcohol and suicide often go hand in hand; that is, a person who commits suicide is often under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
4. A suicide attempt means that the attempter will always have thoughts of suicide. 4. Often a suicide attempt is made during a particularly stressful period. If the remainder of that period can be well managed, then the attempter can go on with life.
5. If you ask a person directly, "Do you feel like killing yourself?" this will lead to a suicide attempt. 5. Asking a person directly about suicidal intent will often relieve the anxiety surrounding the feeling and act as a deterrent to the suicidal behavior.
6. Suicide is more common among the rich. 6. Suicide affects the rich, the poor and the middle class equally.
7. Self destructive behavior is just a bid for attention. 7. All self-destructive behavior is serious and can be lethal. Anyone who behaves self-destructively would benefit from professional help.
8. Improvement following a suicidal crisis means that the suicidal risk is over. 8. When a suicidal person begins to feel better, he or she will still be confronted with problems and responsibilities. This can be very difficult and can lead to a return of suicidal thoughts. It may take months to feel consistently better and in control.

from:   The New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, Department of Psychiatric Nursing
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