1. Are suicidal thoughts normal?
  2. For most people, feeling overwhelmed and not wanting to continue in life tends to happen at one time or another. Having suicidal thoughts does not mean that someone will act on them--these feelings can be attributed to stress or other issues in a person's life. At times, one may even have thoughts that things would be better if they were no longer living. Although these thoughts do not necessarily mean that someone is suicidal, they are clear indicators that a person should seek help and find ways to cope with their current stressors. Thoughts about suicide that include ruminating on the concept, development of a plan, obtaining items to help with completion of a suicide, participating in life ending activities (i.e. writing a letter, giving away items, etc.) are not normal and require immediate attention. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts that include a plan or are in immediate danger, seek help immediately.

  3. What do I do if I am having suicidal thoughts?
  4. If you are having suicidal thoughts, it is important to reach out for help immediately. Tell someone you trust that you are struggling and are having thoughts of ending your life. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Line at 1-800-273-8255, or you can text "GO" to 741741. These services are free, confidential, and available 24 hours/day. These trained professionals will be able to listen, talk with you, and help you develop a plan to stay safe and obtain the appropriate treatment needed in your particular situation.

  5. Are suicidal thoughts normal?
  6. For most people, feeling overwhelmed and not wanting to continue in life tends to happen at one time or another. Having suicidal thoughts does not mean that someone will act on them--these feelings can be attributed to stress or other issues in a person's life. At times, one may even have thoughts that things would be better if they were no longer living. Although these thoughts do not necessarily mean that someone is suicidal, they are clear indicators that a person should seek help and find ways to cope with their current stressors. Thoughts about suicide that include ruminating on the concept, development of a plan, obtaining items to help with completion of a suicide, participating in life ending activities (i.e. writing a letter, giving away items, etc.) are not normal and require immediate attention. If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts that include a plan or are in immediate danger, seek help immediately.

  7. What do I do if I'm thinking about self-harm or suicide?
  8. Do not keep these thoughts to yourself. Contact a trusted friend or mentor, call the suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255, or visit an emergency room.

  9. Where do I go for an urgent mental health problem requiring immediate help?
  10. If you are having an urgent mental health problem requiring immediate help, you should contact Network 180 in Kent County at 616-336-3909 or call a local psychiatric facility for an assessment to determine the most appropriate course of treatment for you. In Kent County, you can call Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services at 616-455-5000 or Forest View Psychiatric Hospital at 616-942-9610. If you are unable to do so, go to the nearest emergency room or call 911. If there is not a psychiatrist on call, you may be transferred by ambulance to the nearest psychiatric facility.