Mental health, suicide and guns... - Page 2

Mental health, suicide and guns...

This is a discussion on Mental health, suicide and guns... within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; This story is a good reminder. My girlfriend's sister lives with us and she has mental health issues. I don't have a gun safe for ...

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  1. #16
    New Member Array Mattjm24's Avatar
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    This story is a good reminder. My girlfriend's sister lives with us and she has mental health issues. I don't have a gun safe for my two guns but every time I leave the house the one I am not carrying remains locked in the lock that came with the gun.
    maxwell97 likes this.

  2. #17
    Distinguished Member Array Novarider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXRocket View Post
    That is very sad.

    "the son broke into the small safe" YOU are responsible for your firearms! There are many ways to secure your guns. Please do so. Trigger locks are great.
    You seriously believe this is the parents fault?

    If he had hung himself with rope found in the garage would it still have been their fault? How about if he swallowed a bottle of tylenol they bought?

    Blaming the parents or the gun is just rediculous. They are already going to do that themselves even though it was not their fault.

  3. #18
    Senior Member Array RonM0710's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmf552 View Post
    My comments here are meant respectfully to the OP, to expand on his point by pointing out how difficult looking out for this is. I'm trying to make that point, not to diminish the seriousness and sadness of the OP in any way.

    The problem is: Unless someone is really acting out, or actually threatening to commit suicide, it's hard to do something. What are you going to say? "Are you thinking about killing yourself?" How would you respond if someone asked you that, even if you were depressed? Are you going to go to authorities based on your non-professional "diagnosis" that they might be a danger to themselves? How would you like it if someone did that to you, especially if they were wrong, which they may well be. Are you going "red flag" a fellow gun owner if your state has that? Would that not be going against everything you believe about the RTKABA?

    Sadly, there is no way to tell. I got the following list of signs that someone may be suicidal off a suicide hotline website:

    Physical changes
    • Major changes to sleeping patterns — too much or too little (At my age? Every night.)
    • Loss of energy (Again, at my age?)
    • Loss of interest in personal hygiene or appearance (I've been married for 40 years. Time to let myself go.)
    • Loss of interest in sex (Oh-oh. My wife!)
    • Sudden and extreme changes in eating habits — either loss of appetite or increase in appetite (That could be a lot of things.)
    • Weight gain or loss (Gain, constantly. Loss, I wish!)
    • Increase in minor illnesses (Again, at my age?)

    Conversational signs
    • No future — “What’s the point? Things are never going to get any better” (with the mid-term elections coming up?)
    • Guilt — “It’s all my fault, I’m to blame” (My wife has been saying this for 40 years of marriage. She has never been suicidal.)
    • Escape — “I can’t take this anymore” (I have been in about a dozen jobs where I said that every day.)
    • Alone — “I’m on my own … no-one cares about me” (You may be right, not suicidal!)
    • Damaged — “I’ve been irreparably damaged… I’ll never be the same again” (I had that reaction after I watched Real Housewives, the one time.)
    • Helpless — “Nothing I do makes a bit of difference, it’s beyond my control” (An honest reaction to the way this country is going.)
    • Talking about suicide or death (OK, I'll buy that one.)
    • Planning for suicide (OK, I'll buy that one too.)

    Behaviors
    • Alcohol or drug misuse (OV is at risk!)
    • Fighting and/or breaking the law (I really don't see that as a sign of suicide. Other problems, yes.)
    • Withdrawal from family and friends (You haven't met my family!)
    • Quitting activities that were previously important (OK, so they are not important anymore. Photography used to be really important to me. I got over it.)
    • Prior suicidal behaviour (OK, but does that mean the person has to under watch the rest of their lives? The prospect of that could make one suicidal.)
    • Self-harming (OK, I agree with that one.)
    • Putting affairs in order: giving away possessions, especially those that have special significance for the person. (My Dad did that when he got cancer. But he was not suicidal.)
    • Writing a suicide note or goodbye letters to people (OK, I agree with that one.)
    • Uncharacteristic risk-taking or recklessness, for example driving recklessly. (That takes in a lot of people who are not suicidal. I ride a motorcycle. Does that make me suicidal? Some might say yes. Others might say liking guns makes one suicidal.)
    • Unexplained crying (Again, with the midterm elections coming up?)
    • Emotional outbursts (Ditto)

    Feelings (For this whole category: How do you know what someone else is feeling? Even if they say one of these, who has not felt all these at one point in their lives, but not been suicidal?)
    • Sadness
    • Anger
    • Shame
    • Desperation
    • Disconnection
    • Hopelessness
    • Worthlessness
    • Powerlessness
    • Loneliness
    • Isolation
    Thank you for the information. If it helps just one person, that is one life saved.
    Frodebro, jmf552 and msgt/ret like this.
    "Lets Be Careful Out There!"

    Ron

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  5. #19
    Distinguished Member Array SOS24's Avatar
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    Suicide is a real problem that is ignored, which is why I hate that statistically it is counted under violent deaths. It is great for gun control advocates who want to inflate gun death statistics, but hides the real. Also like domestic violence,it is just one of those issues people want to ignore, because it is to hard to solve.

    Many of us know the suicide by gun death comparison because of gun control advocates often quoting the number, but are some general suicide datapoints using NVDRS and WISQARS data:

    Suicide accounts for almost 20% of all fatal injuries and 63% of all reported violent deaths.

    Suicide accounts for over 16% of all fatal injuries and over 43% of all reported violent deaths of those under 17yrs old. Suicide accounts for more deaths of school aged children (5-17) than guns.

    It is a problem that is not going to go away with gun control or ignoring it.
    msgt/ret, graydude and Havok like this.

  6. #20
    VIP Member Array Libertywheel's Avatar
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    Wow. Tragic. Super sad. Super real. Good reminder. Thank you. Peace to you and your clients.
    Harryball likes this.
    Doing my best to stay left of boom.

  7. #21
    Member Array Grizzly2's Avatar
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    Two in my immediate family, one brother's son, one neighbors ex wife, numerous attempts from those I've known. I'm no stranger to it, and it is too painful to open up details. If we truly want to slow this down, everyone of us must desire from the heart to want to change much of how we live, think and relate to others. This is a very cold society, a very lonely society, with most families spread out and separated across the continent. We seek satisfaction from what only temporarily fills us. After 71 years, most of which I'd consider wandering in the wilderness of life, I found true life after being convicted by Scripture of how I was living and then going through repentance. True humility, conviction and repentance, along with a heart felt desire to live better - to be free of our selfishness, anger, resentment, jealousy and covertness. When all this happens and we come to the end of ourselves and cry out for help in this way - not just seeking relief from our anxiety or loneliness, but a true desire to live a more righteous life, a life that Jesus lived, and with a desire to turn from our old ways, we will be changed. We will experience new life within and cherish this change the rest of our days.

    But then you will need others who have walked this way - in this new Spirit of Christ - to guide you in ways that we really do not see in most churches today. Many talk of this salvation, but few continue on to grow in grace, continually seeing old clinging ways from our old nature and ask and depend upon Christ to free us from them. This is a whole hearted endeavor which must put God and Jesus first. Then, relying upon His victory over the world, the flesh and the devil, we too will learn what it is to be overcomers, growing into the characteristics of Jesus.

    When you live this way, not just talk the talk, and learn the words, you will pass this victorious way of living with dependence upon Christ on to your children. They too will begin to know this is real as they begin to see answered prayer and God show up in their lives and as they see the older folks living and walking not in the ways of the old self, led by worldly ways, but in Christ, led by the Holy Spirit. This is the only answer I know of to remedy this plague of suicide and chaos that infects our lives and society.

  8. #22
    Member Array TXRocket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Novarider View Post
    You seriously believe this is the parents fault?

    If he had hung himself with rope found in the garage would it still have been their fault? How about if he swallowed a bottle of tylenol they bought?

    Blaming the parents or the gun is just rediculous. They are already going to do that themselves even though it was not their fault.
    Not blaming anybody or anything especially the GUN!

    It was meant to be a message to all of us, SECURE YOUR FIREARMS. Obviously not a priority to you.

    100 ways to kill yourself this one just gives more fuel to the anti-gun left
    duane_wade_1 likes this.

  9. #23
    VIP Member Array graydude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmf552 View Post
    My comments here are meant respectfully to the OP, to expand on his point by pointing out how difficult looking out for this is. I'm trying to make that point, not to diminish the seriousness and sadness of the OP in any way.

    The problem is: Unless someone is really acting out, or actually threatening to commit suicide, it's hard to do something. What are you going to say? "Are you thinking about killing yourself?" How would you respond if someone asked you that, even if you were depressed? Are you going to go to authorities based on your non-professional "diagnosis" that they might be a danger to themselves? How would you like it if someone did that to you, especially if they were wrong, which they may well be. Are you going "red flag" a fellow gun owner if your state has that? Would that not be going against everything you believe about the RTKABA?
    I'm not a professional in this area, but have an immediate family member who spent half a year in in-patient and partial-hospitalization treatment and is still in counseling, as well as too many fellow military members who have gone through with suicide, so I have asked many questions of the "experts."

    Regarding asking such things as "are you thinking about killing yourself?", yes, we should openly ask questions like that according to every professional I've spoken with. Asking things such as "have you hurt yourself?; are you thinking of hurting yourself?; is life worth living?; are you considering suicide?" etc., are questions to ask without hesitation. Someone who isn't suicidal isn't likely to consider it based on questions we ask, nor is it likely to expedite a suicide attempt for someone who is suicidal. But, someone who is suicidal is likely to answer the questions truthfully and admit they're considering it, which gives us a chance to intervene.

    I regularly check in with my family member who was suicidal and is taking medication along with counseling for severe depression. I regularly ask if she has had any recent thoughts about hurting herself or ending her life. And she says she doesn't mind me asking, because having it out in the open between us is a burden off her shoulders. She doesn't have to hide it when she's depressed, and we can freely talk. I'm also confident that our relationship and trust is so strong that she will let me know if such bad thoughts do creep back into her mind...we also have a code word so she can let me know even when out in public, so I don't need to pry at the moment, but need to stay 100% by her side (not even a bathroom break alone) until we can talk about it and get her the help she needs.

    Again, I'm not a psychiatric professional, so I recommend anyone wondering about these things speak with a professional on how to handle it.

    The list of indicators is a good one; I snipped it out simply to save space. What that list helps with is to give us a sense of how those around us a re changing over time. A single indicator may not mean much, and things such as aches and pains of aging can explain many of them. But a few together may trip our "gut check" and intuition to where we recognize something isn't quite right, maybe enough to intervene in time.
    Ride hard, shoot straight, always speak the truth

  10. #24
    VIP Member Array graydude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXRocket View Post
    Not blaming anybody or anything especially the GUN!

    It was meant to be a message to all of us, SECURE YOUR FIREARMS. Obviously not a priority to you.

    100 ways to kill yourself this one just gives more fuel to the anti-gun left
    The gun was locked in a safe, but apparently that wasn't good enough in your opinion. Saying that securing firearms isn't a priority for @Novarider is off base and seems out of character from what I've seen of Novarider's posts here on DC. Many of us store guns in safes, so by extension you must think those of us who do store guns in safes don't properly prioritize secure firearms storage, which seems counter intuitive.
    duane_wade_1 likes this.
    Ride hard, shoot straight, always speak the truth

  11. #25
    Member Array TXRocket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by graydude View Post
    The gun was locked in a safe, but apparently that wasn't good enough in your opinion. Saying that securing firearms isn't a priority for @Novarider is off base and seems out of character from what I've seen of Novarider's posts here on DC. Many of us store guns in safes, so by extension you must think those of us who do store guns in safes don't properly prioritize secure firearms storage, which seems counter intuitive.
    Not sure how anyone would think it was "good enough"

    I really do appreciate you reading between the lines and doing an accurate job of explaining my true feelings to the forum! Well done.

  12. #26
    VIP Member Array OldChap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by entertainment72 View Post
    As sad as suicide is, I believe everyone has the right to check out if and when they want to.
    I think I understand what you're saying, but in my 40 years plus of ministry I have spent a lot more time around death than I ever wanted.

    When people become emotionally and mentally disturbed, frequently they are the last ones to realize how serious it is, and sometimes it is too late. At that point, intervention is difficult.

    Others know they are fighting a battle, but give no outward signs whatsoever. I lost a good young police officer and a firefighter. Both had families. As much as I had seen it and been trained to look for it, I missed it. I will carry that to my grave. While they may have thought death was some escape from the torment, I assure you, what they put their families through was the most cruel and devastating thing you never want to see. When people decide to end their lives, the only ones who do not leave a terrible legacy are those who have no family that cares about them.

    In my three years working as a Hospice Chaplain, I averaged one death a week. These were people who did not embrace death, like those who commit suicide, but rather they knew the battle was lost and they wanted to go on their own terms, with as much dignity as they could. The goal of Hospice is to make people enjoy every moment they have left to the absolute best of our ability. We fought hard for each patient. I found most of my patients went extremely peacefully, and while their families still grieved, we had time to prepare them for the experience. I like to think that for the most part we were successful.

    Suicide is not just a personal experience. It leaves ripples behind that affect many for the rest of their lives. Frequently there is no helping the survivors.

    There is a huge gulf between suicide and death with dignity that must be witnessed to be understood. I support the latter. I will move heaven and earth to prevent the former.
    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has limits."

  13. #27
    Member Array retired badge 1's Avatar
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    Adolescents and young adults are frequently moody and uncommunicative. Any differences between normal behavior and aberrant behavior are minimal at best, and likely to result in 5 different opinions for every 3 mental health professionals consulted. Every insurance plan I have ever looked into has serious limitations on mental health treatment, so proceeding to treatment without serious indications of necessity is likely to be a huge financial burden on the family.

    It is easy, after the fact of a suicide, to be critical of those who "should have known", "should have acted", "should have locked up the medicine cabinet", "should have secured the guns better", or whatever perceived shortcomings come to mind.

    For whatever it is worth, I will offer my experience as a cop (24 years) and Vietnam combat veteran:

    1. Those who act out openly and threaten to kill themselves actually do so very seldom. This behavior is typically an attention-getting device used as a means of manipulating others. Even events that appear to be suicide attempts (wrist cutting, pill taking, etc) are far more frequently attempts to control others than actual attempts to commit suicide.

    2. Those who make a serious decision to take their own lives seldom discuss their plans, and usually do the deed in a very private manner. Identifying such a person or problem is impossible under most circumstances. Chances of interdicting such incidents are extremely low.

    Serious issues, for sure. Lots of pain and suffering for families, friends, and communities. But suicide, particularly among immature young people (of which we certainly have more than ever before), is an issue that has always been with us and will probably always be with us. Assigning blame, finger pointing, and endless "what if" discussions will not help anyone.

  14. #28
    Member Array Grizzly2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXRocket View Post
    That is very sad.

    "the son broke into the small safe" YOU are responsible for your firearms! There are many ways to secure your guns. Please do so. Trigger locks are great.
    What ARE you saying then?

    I would think that a combination lock safe would be the best way to secure them, other than building a bank vault. No keys to be found. No combonation written down and hidden away at home or on line where kids can and will find it. If you use keys, and use those MasterLock Trigger locks, if kids want in, they will find the keys; both the keys to the locks and the key to the safe. If they "really" want in, they will find your pry bars or resort to your kitchen knives.


    The scariest thing to my way of thinking, is some of the anti depressants being prescribed that bring on suicidal thoughts - even in those who weren't in a suicidal state. Or, the reactions many have when they stop taking these meds that can be even more dangerous to those around them and also to themselves.
    Havok and popo22 like this.

  15. #29
    VIP Member Array Havok's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXRocket View Post
    Not sure how anyone would think it was "good enough"

    I really do appreciate you reading between the lines and doing an accurate job of explaining my true feelings to the forum! Well done.
    What better way to secure firearms than in a gun safe?

    This seems like a classic case of knowing a better way to do something, only AFTER you know the outcome.
    We get the government we deserve.

  16. #30
    VIP Member Array OldChap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Novarider View Post
    You seriously believe this is the parents fault?

    If he had hung himself with rope found in the garage would it still have been their fault? How about if he swallowed a bottle of tylenol they bought?

    Blaming the parents or the gun is just rediculous. They are already going to do that themselves even though it was not their fault.
    I'm going to give out 1,000 Likes to TWO, count 'em TWO folks today.

    First to @Novarider You are exactly right. Blame is self-assigned by the survivors and we must never reinforce the notion. The correct approach is to help the survivors understand that suicide may ONLY be blamed on the actor - even if it might be obvious to us that there were contributing factors. It is one of those times when saying less is the wiser choice. Trust me, eventually the survivors will understand one day. In truth, no one forced them to take their own lives. There are always alternatives to the finality of that step.

    And trust me. There is NO BLAME here from me to the one who stated this - especially on this forum. It is a very normal and natural reaction. We want to know "who or what caused this terrible thing". I wish I had a dollar for every time I have heard it.

    The second 1,000 Likes Award goes to @Grizzly2 Brother, your post highlighted something I cannot speak about here lest I get spanked.

    Nevertheless you have highlighted a solution to what is perhaps the real root cause of suicide, which is a feeling that everyone and everything has abandoned you and there is nothing left worth living for. The truth is that particular lie causes many people to seek relief in death and ignore life more abundant that is free for the taking. Thanks for saying it.


    EDIT Now I have to give out a THIRD 1,000 Likes. Whew! THREE IN ONE DAY. A home run of a thread topic if there ever was one. So, here 'tis:

    @retired badge 1 Very well said sir. I'll walk your beat with you any day.
    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has limits."

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