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Suicide Warning Signs on Social Media: What You Can Do When It’s Someone You Know

suicide warning signs on social media

It appears that people are spending more time on social media than they have ever done before. The majority of posts are innocent depictions of everyday life; they include status updates, images of friends or food, and even the occasional joke. People, on the other hand, occasionally discuss personal matters and display indicators that things are not going well. Posts may contain words or images that express feelings of loneliness, isolation, hopelessness, irritation, or aggression, among other things.

The person’s portrayal of behaviors that are out of character, the posting of information concerning food or sleeping difficulties, and the withdrawal from normal activities might all be signals that they are experiencing emotional difficulties. They may even be contemplating suicide or doing acts of self-harm at this point. So, what should you do if a friend posts on social media that he or she is contemplating suicide or self-harm?

First and foremost, if your friend is in immediate danger, contact their family as soon as possible. If they are not in immediate danger, reaching out directly to that person or to a common friend can make a significant difference in their response. Also speak to someone at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) or the Crisis Text Line (text “HELLO” to 741-741), both of which can give you information and support.

Distinct social media networks have different methods for requesting assistance for someone. Once they get a report, they will make contact with the individual in question and inquire about his or her well-being.

Reporting the post on Facebook and filling out the form with the name of the person, the link to their Facebook profile, the link to the content in question, and a screenshot, if you have one, are the best ways to proceed. A fully-trained member of Facebook’s Community Operations Team will analyze it to determine if the individual is in danger and will provide them with information about available resources. If there is a suspicion of impending danger, local authorities may be alerted.

Similarly, a post on Instagram can be reported by clicking on the three dots that appear above it. Afterward, select “It’s Inappropriate > Self Injury” from the drop-down menu. The following message will be sent to the user via the app: “Someone observed one of your postings and believes you might be going through a difficult time.” We’d be happy to assist you if you require it.” It will be discussed how to talk to a friend, how to get a direct connection to a local hotline, and how to get support in various ways. Individuals who search for hashtags that promote self-harm will also receive the notification, according to Instagram.

When reporting suicide ideation on Twitter, you can use a form to submit your information. Besides the username, you’ll need to offer a description of the problem, a link to the tweet (if applicable), your full name and email, as well as your phone number and Twitter username, if applicable.

Snapchat advises direct communication with the friend in order to seek assistance through local services listed on their website. However, if you don’t feel comfortable approaching them personally, you can report their snap on your mobile device (by selecting “Mean or inappropriate snaps”) or submit a general request for assistance through Snapchat’s Support Center.

YouTube does not allow the posting of anything that encourages self-harm or glorifies suicidal activity. If you observe something that concerns you, you can flag the video by selecting “Report” from the three dots directly below the bottom right corner, followed by “Harmful dangerous conduct” from the drop-down menu. The videos are reviewed by YouTube personnel at all hours of the day and night, and they will reach out to individuals who have resources and collaborate with suicide prevention organizations to provide support.

When you come across articles that deal with suicidal thoughts or actions, it’s crucial to take them seriously and act accordingly. When it is feasible, lend your friend your support because they are most likely in a great deal of discomfort. Pay attention, express concern, and validate their emotions. Don’t give solutions unless specifically requested to do so. Follow up with them on a frequent basis to demonstrate your concern for them and to reassure them that they are not alone. As a final reminder, inform them that there are effective treatments as well as crisis assistance resources available.

Suicide is the second greatest cause of death among adolescents between the ages of 10 and 19 years old, and it is mostly avoidable. For more information about The Suicide Watch and Wellness Foundation Organization for Suicide Prevention and Research, please visit their website by clicking here.

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