Re: Suicide (was PCA statement on end of life decisions)

From: Don Winterstein <>
Date: Tue Apr 05 2005 - 05:13:19 EDT

Concerning your third question: A large fraction of suicides is by the mentally ill (depressed or schizophrenic). The appropriate action is to protect them from themselves. In California anyone caught attempting suicide is required to be hospitalized for at least 72 hours; and similar confinement may be appropriate even for those who threaten.

Generally, anyone who threatens suicide should be evaluated for depression. Sometimes medication seems to take care of the problem.

There may be exceptions, but I suspect most of the time it does no good to try to talk someone out of suicide, and in fact practically anything you say may simply make the person more determined. He will look for and find compelling reasons to think your words of encouragement don't apply to him, and then he will sink deeper. The mentally ill especially will often not interpret what you say in the way you intend. (I've had to deal with people like this.)

Get a mental health professional involved asap.


  ----- Original Message -----
  From: Iain Strachan<>
  Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 12:00 PM
  Subject: Suicide (was PCA statement on end of life decisions)

  Just thought there should be some questions perhaps to focus the discussion rather than a general trawl for views ...

  (1) Is suicide the same as murder? (as indicated in the PCA statement in the link posted by jack)
  (2) Is suicide a "mortal sin" (instant ticket to Hell, as my Buddhist friend suggested).
  (3) If you were confronted with someone who was very suicidal, would you try to talk them out of it, or accept that was the way they feel? Or both? What if such a person was also a Christian? ( yes, this situation is currently true in my life).

Received on Tue Apr 5 05:14:12 2005

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