How to tell when intrusive thoughts or suicidal ideations become dangerous and how to find support now.
Are you having suicidal thoughts? Grief and depression can feel like a veil that shields you from seeing a way out of your pain. But you have options, and you will feel better again. Read this post to better understand your suicidal thoughts and how you can get help to feel better.
If you clicked on this post, we want to commend you. Firstly, because suicide can be a frightening topic to face. Secondly, because clicking on this post shows that you’re here and holding on, even though part of you might not want to anymore. That takes some serious strength.
If the throes of grief have you so low that you’re thinking about ending your own life, know that you’ve come to the right place, and you’re not alone. In this post we’ll talk a bit about types of suicidal thinking, why you’re having the thoughts you’re having, and action steps you can take to begin healing.
What does it mean to “be suicidal?”
Suicidal thoughts can come in a couple of forms: passive or active. Passive suicidal thoughts include things like wishing you could fall asleep and never wake up; or feeling like if you got in a car wreck today and didn’t make it out alive, well, that would be fine. A passive suicidal thought can also look like wishing you were dead so that you could be with a loved one who has passed away.
Active suicidal thoughts are an escalation of passive suicidal thoughts. If you’re having active suicidal thoughts, you may have come up with a plan for how you’d end your life. You may have considered the means, place, or time. You may even be putting in some research on how to do it. Our biggest hope with this blog post is that you’ll explore your other options first. And though it can be hard to see, you do have other options (we’ll share a couple of those below).
So why the hell can’t I see any other options?
The depression that accompanies grief recovery is often described as a veil. It separates you from the clarity of a fully energized human experience. Think about it: When you’re depressed, you are actively depressing something. That something is your mind. And what does it mean to depress?
depress (verb): reduce the level or strength of activity in (something, especially an economic or biological system)
We depress a button on the car door when we want to make the window stay down. When the doctor wants to look at your throat, they’ll depress your tongue with a wooden spatula to make sure your tongue stays down. When you are grieving or depressed, your mind depresses itself, and unfortunately, that keeps you feeling down.
As your psyche does its best to help you survive the trauma of loss, it’s “depressing” your full range of emotional experience. But depression and grief won’t take your joy away forever. This feeling is temporary, even if it’s been going on way longer than you feel you can handle.
If what you’re going through right now is so unbearable that death feels like the only way out, please know that there is light and opportunity for you on the other side of the depression veil. There is no shame in having suicidal thoughts, and there are people who are equipped and want to help you through this.
Since July 2022, getting help for your suicidal thoughts has become more accessible than ever. You can dial 9-8-8 to reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Call or text to chat with trained counselors who will listen, understand, and connect you with the resources you need to get better. It’s all confidential.
Remember: You are stronger than your suicidal thoughts. You have options. You will feel joy and light again—if you just hang on.
Support for Someone Struggling with Suicidal Thoughts
If you are suffering from suicidal thoughts or know someone who is suffering, you are not alone. We see you, we know you’re hurting, and want to offer you a safe place to share your story and feel supported in your healing journey. Contact us today to set up a free discovery call and spend some time with us – we’re here for you.
Sharon Brubaker is a certified Life Coach and credentialed Grief Specialist who, along with her team, teaches women who are grieving how to process their thoughts and emotions. To learn more about navigating grief within the family, listen to the full podcast episode here or download my free e-Book, The Griever’s Guide, which equips you with the tools to live life after grief; because no griever should have to navigate a broken heart on their own.