Parent of Suicidal teen

Discussion in 'I Have a Question...' started by mdancey, Jun 7, 2008.

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  1. mdancey

    mdancey Member

    I need to find a place for me, as I try to swim through these very muddy waters of attempted teen suicide. My daughter tried to kill herself just 2 nights ago and I so disparately need to talk to moms and dads that have gone through this. Any help in this direction is greatly appreciated.


    Peace
    Mary
     
  2. kittyD

    kittyD Well-Known Member

    Hi Mary,
    I'm going thru the same with my 14 yr old daughter. You will get good advice and empathy here, even if it makes you face some unpleasant truths. Just keep posting.
    kD
     
  3. gentlelady

    gentlelady Staff Alumni

    You may also be able to talk to those who have feelings similar to those your teen have felt. To get a better understasnding of that as well as to be able to see how ithers deal with this situation may be helpful. I always am saddened when I hear of young people losing hope for life. There are so many things that contribute to it in today's society, but that doesn't make it any easier to accept or should we be placed in a position that we have to. I hope you find a bit of understanding here as well as some answers. I will think of your family.
     
  4. Christianv2

    Christianv2 Well-Known Member

    It can be a very confusing time for you to see your daughter in so much distraught. Try to be understanding and let her openly talk to you. Don't judge her, you have to there for her. I hope you find whatever information you may need here, good luck and god bless.
     
  5. ItThing

    ItThing Well-Known Member

    I know you asked for a fellow parent's advice, but I hoped that my perspective as a teen could help. If I were the parent of a suicidal teen I would keep a firm stance on their behaviour and decisions to prevent their depression taking over, but provide freedom and acceptance for anything that is not truly self destructive. Talking to your teen is important if you are to prevent self destructive behaviour, but too much questioning may be perceived by teens as a threat to privacy and independence, so good and careful judgment is especially important in this case. I reccomend these policies as a way to keep a depressed teen active in improving their lifestyle and outlook, other measures may be necessary depending on the issue in question.
     
  6. Clockwork Reality

    Clockwork Reality Well-Known Member

    I have to ask, what kind of social group is your daughter hanging out with? Find out what they're into, what kind of music they enjoy, etc. Unfortunately, I'm of the firm belief that suicide has become "romanticized" in recent years in the popular media, and it has the potential to be very alluring to young people. For example, some teenagers have turned towards cutting simply because it's the trendy thing to do.

    Granted, I have no idea of your daughter's situation, but I would urge you to try to get her interested in some different activities if the above holds true. My mother made me get involved with volunteer activities as a teenager (I volunteered at the local library and loved it) and it helped asguage those turbulent teen years to a large degree.

    I'm not a parent, but my younger brother is now about the same age and he struggles with anxiety and depression. I find taking him out, getting him away from the video games and the internet for a while and simply going fishing, gives his self-esteem a huge boost.

    EDIT: my car has a "no Linkin Park" rule. I admit, I listen to them occasionally and enjoy it, but my brother tends to listen to it exclusively and it's always very obvious when he does so. Ozzy or Weird Al perk him right up.
     
  7. mdancey

    mdancey Member

    Thank-you all for your encouragement. To answer some of your questions her music is extremely varied from stuff her dad and I would have listened to in the 70/80's to what is more current and popular with her age group. She often has the computer playing her music when she is on it and more often than not I'm enjoying what I hear. I find my husbands choice of music more offending and it's from my generation. :) In grade 8 she became somewhat emoish which has totally evolved over the past couple of years to something I refer to as Emo Light. :) She still dies her hair black, but has totally lightened up on the dark make-up, and has a couple of piercings but her clothes have taken on a much lighter look. Like her mother and father and siblings before her as teenagers she has days that she is up and happy and days that she is sullen and withdrawn from the rest of the household. If you lined up her very best friends end to end you'd see one carbon copy of K, with black hair and piercings, one long haired natural beauty with nothing the slightest bit emoish about her and 2 other pixied haired beauties. Their taste in music varies as much as their taste in clothes and the look that they most feel comfortable with. They see each other beyond what is most evident to those around them. I hope they stay to support her.

    She spends far too much time on the computer. I'm not sure how much of her time is spent writing but she does have a lot of stories she has written on-line. Some of which we have tracked down over the past couple of days. The girl is talented, no doubt about it. We have recently gone back to 'no computer,no TV Sundays' until after 4pm and since she isn't normally a late sleeper she does have several hours to do other things. Which she and her younger sister have once they got over the initial shock. She is a talented artist, so incredibly funny and has a laugh that never fails to make other people laugh along with her.

    She is very shy, and introverted when in an environment where she does not know anyone or knows very few people. She is stunningly beautiful, tall, smart, talented and funny and just as unsure of herself as I was at that gangly age. But unlike me, who didn't care (ok I probably secretly did but didn't at the same time) she seems to want to keep a count of the amount of friends she has and for some reason the 3-4 good/best friends that she has plus numerous friends just aren't enough. No boyfriend currently and never one that she's had for very long. In her suicide note she did mention one with a note to him. I've asked about getting in contact with him but she says no. That in the note she just wanted him to know that she did love him so much as a friend but couldn't, didn't love him as he wanted her too and so.........they have no contact. Too sad. I want to speak with him as I know that the rumour mill could be hot and heavy come Monday and in a crowded hallway at school is not a way for him to find out. I will speak to her about it today when I see her.

    I think that she likes to please us as much as possible and while it may take a while for her to do something we've asked of her she always gets it done......well.....usually. :)

    The one thing that has remained constant since I found her in her bathroom is our love and unwavering support. It was very difficult to get any facility to commit to seeing her as we kind of live in a no mans land between them all. I stood my ground with the medical personnel where she was taken on Thursday night until there was a mental health discharge plan in place. They were planning on keeping her for the weekend to monitor her organs due to the Ibuprofen overdose. I have, of course, numerous complaints of how this has been handled. From shift change nurses AND doctors NOT fully reading the charts from Thursday night to a doctor saying that her wounds were superficial (as the doctor Thursday chose not to stitch them but to glue them) and that he felt it wasn't a serious attempt. Well fuck me. I'm surprised I didn't lose it with him right there......I told him that I didn't consider a wound that shot blood three feet across the room with every heart beat superficial and did he read the chart to know exactly how fucking long she had been in the tub. Her hands and arms have at least 4 different entry attempts where the ambulance drivers tried to put an IV into her. They couldn't find a vein with enough blood left in it......and I'm pretty sure that K and I have compared gross backs of hands with large ugly veins in them with each other. AND.....I have a suicide note. Not a serious attempt, Fuck. What does a girl need to do to get a little attention around here!! What a cluster fuck this could have been. I stood my ground, would not take no for an answer and got results. The charge nurse actually teared up when she told me how wonderful she thought we all were and that while this may not be the brightest light in K's life she sure is one lucky girl. And this coming from a woman who spent most of the day on the phone trying to find someone somewhere to come see K on Friday. We fall into no mans land. B doesn't want their cast offs and neither does S. S tried to pull that shit on our family doctor (her word not mine) and she told them that K was HER patient and that she was a doctor with privileges at S and that K was going to be seen. Period. It'll take a while but she made her point very clear. We've decided to keep her Monday appointment and keep the other one as well in case it's needed.

    There is no anger though I do know that is to come. There are moments of panic and fear where we are overwhelmed with the prospect of bringing her home tomorrow after her assessment at a local teen crisis centre. But it is always, always, underlined with gargangous amount of love. I try not to let the guilt over whelm me, as my very best friend says, it's not my time to rest or feel guilty it's K's time. As it should be.


    Peace
    Mary

    Sorry for writing so much I started and all this puked up. If you've gotten this far....I thank you.
     
  8. Clockwork Reality

    Clockwork Reality Well-Known Member

    Based on what you've told us, I think you've done exactly what is right for your daughter. Make sure that she gets the therapy that she needs, both individual and group, and that she takes her mediicine as prescribed, if any is given. I'd also limit the amount of time spent on the phone/computer as she recovers, mostly so you can keep an eye on her and help prevent her from getting too overwhelmed.

    However, I would encourage you to allow her to write to her heart's content, regardless of the time. Writing is a wonderful outlet for emotions and it personally kept me afloat through a very rough spot in my life. Perhaps you have a computer without internet connectivity? Just a suggestion.
     
  9. derbygirl

    derbygirl Chat and Forum Buddy

    I agree with stupid hat, writing (and any other creative outlet) is the best way to allow feelings of anxiety, depression and uncertainties flow out, and helps as a coping strategy.

    I admire you as a parental figure, I wish my mother was as helpful as you are with your daughter (my mother cast me out on the streets when I was ill and suicidal). Keep up the support you are giving her. The one thing I wished my mother had showed me during my troublesome teens was the compassion, support and love you show for you daughter. Always let her know you care, even if you dont get a valid response. She needs to know at times like this.

    I hope this tough time will pass as gently as possible for you and your family.
    Take care

    Felix...
     
  10. underthestars

    underthestars Active Member

    You might want to try and talk to her friends to, just to see where they're at and how they feel. It often means a lot if teens know that they still have the support of they're friends and that they wont treat them any differently than before.

    Your doing a great job<3
     
  11. Twisted Sweet Lies

    Twisted Sweet Lies Well-Known Member

    I just wanted to suggest this. Find out what she usually does on the computer. Check the internet history to see what websites she goes to. I know there are a lot of pro suicide websites out there. I would also find out who all she’s been talking too online like in chat rooms and on instance messenger. I’ve heard of a person who went into chat rooms and actually encouraged suicide.
     
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