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How Do You Help a Child Who Threatens To Commit Suicide If He Can't Have Drugs?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Child' started by Rainman, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    I want to help a neighbor I liked but don't know how. He has a son [16] who started using drugs when his brother, who he was very close to died. Since he's got no job he stole and sold household items. His mother to stop him from stealing started giving a little bit of money. When she realized that she was enabling him, she stopped giving him any money. That's when he started issuing the threats I mentioned. He'd ask for money and if you she didn't give it, he'd tell her he was going to kill himself and he actually did attempt to kill himself at one time.

    How can you help such a kid?
  2. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    I don't want to make light of suicidal threats, because they can be very serious. But from my own experience, I can say that threatening suicide was my son's "ace in the hole" when he was struggling with his addiction. Addicts are master manipulators, and I think saying that they're going to kill themselves is something they know will get a reaction from people...especially their parents. That said, if a young person threatens to harm themselves, the parents should consider taking them to the emergency room. We did that on more than one occasion with our son. It's always best to have a professional do an assessment in a situation like this.
  3. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    Agree that suicidal threats should not be taken lightly. Better to really seek help from professionals or from those who have skills and knowledge in handling these kind of kids and situations.
    deanokat likes this.
  4. L_B

    L_B Community Champion

    The child needs help. He needs to be taken to the ER where they can get him some help. It is best not to ignore the threats because if he has attempted it in the past, he will probably try it again too. It is a very difficult situation to be in. I hope he gets the help me needs soon!
    deanokat likes this.
  5. melody

    melody Active Contributor

    Here we have Good Samaritan to help with suicide threats. I don't what what kind of resources your area has, but many places have government funded programs (through grants) who can help. You could call your local hospital and ask them. We have the big brother program here, as well as other mentoring programs. They may be able to offer some assistance, as well. There is also the National Suicide Prevention Life Line, I don't know if I am allowed to put the number, but you can find that pretty easily. It is kind of you to want to help your neighbor during such difficult times.
    deanokat likes this.
  6. darkrebelchild

    darkrebelchild Community Champion

    That teenager should be watched closely, he may not be bluffing. But he must not be given money for anything since there is certainty that he would purchase drugs. He should be admitted into a facility immediately so that he will not harm his parents or himself.
  7. Lostinvoid

    Lostinvoid Member

    I totally agree with deanokat. I myself would use threats of suicide and did attempt it once. The thing to remember is a lot of the time these are empty threats. Consider it there last line of defense to get more drugs. when I would do this, most of the time it would end in me throwing a temper tantrum and not talking/being resentful towards everyone for awhile. They will eventually stop asking for money when you have made it absolutely CLEAR that you are in no way shape or form supporting there habit. It may take while but eventually they'll get the picture. The time I would be worried is when they ask you for money and you say no, and they just say "oh okay" and walk away nonchalantly. That Is EXACTLY what I did the time I actually did try to take my my life. Of course everyone is different. But if they normally throw a fit when you say no and all of a sudden they just calmly walk away you *might* need to be worried. What my parents eventually started doing was calling the cops when I threatened to kill myself. Where I live at in Ohio, if you make threats towards yourself they are required to forcefully take you into treatment for a minimum of 3 days to be mentally evaluated. They will not let you out until you get your head together. This is called being "pink slipped". After 3 times of this happening to me I decided it wasnt worth going to Mental hospitals trying to get drugs. So I stopped asking for money. Hope this helps, don't be afraid to use the help of professionals to fix this problem.
    deanokat and Dominica like this.
  8. cathy

    cathy Member

    I see that many are telling you about how at a.certain stage many addicts learn to become cunning, deceitful, manipulative. However, I can share with you as an addict with benzodiazepines that I have felt the same way as your son for decades. I don't imagine how I could endure the pain of panic attacks and I must have them to live.
    Believe him
    deanokat and Dominica like this.
  9. Dominica

    Dominica Recovery Advocate @ Moving Beyond Codependency Community Listener

    @cathy thanks for sharing with everyone... it is helpful.
  10. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    Thanks for your insight, @cathy.
  11. CholeBur

    CholeBur Member

    Hi! This is a very good aspiration. It is much easier to convince an addict to stop using drugs at the initial stage of addiction, when psychological and physical dependence has not yet fully formed.