93% of people who attempt suicide do not end up dying by suicide. This proves that it is very realistic to believe that even people who get to that dark place, can survive and thrive, with the right skills and supports.
One of the keys is finding the right helper(s) to guide one along the path to safety from suicide and/or self harm. The right helper(s) is/are caring, respectful, patient, and knowledgeable. She/he/they is/are well-grounded in recent research and best practices for reducing suicide risk. That includes working collaboratively with the person at risk and those closest to her/him.
Individual Counseling with ME?
Because of my extensive professional experience, my on-going training specifically in reducing suicide risk, my personal experience, and “the kind of person” I am, I may be the right person to help you or the person you feel so concerned about. And if I’m not the right person, I will try to help you find that right person.
My way of working with people to help them reduce suicide risk is about helping them get to #LifeWorthLiving. That’s what really prevents suicide. So I ask my people to agree to stick around and work with me long enough to learn some new skills to replace old ones. Some of those skills are based in a model called “Safety Planning.” People who work with me get to talk and be heard and believed through the lenses like “No shame, no blame.” and “It’s never too late to learn and change.”
Stayin’ Alive: support group for survivors of suicide thoughts and attempt(s)
Stayin’ Alive is the support group in Lawrence, Kansas for people 18 and over who have ongoing suicide thoughts and/or have attempted suicide. (Starting in 2017, the group is also open to people living with suicide thoughts, but no attempts.) Membership is open to people who can participate in Lawrence, regardless of residency. The group is based on curriculum from the Didi Hirsch center in Los Angeles. The Lawrence group was co-founded in September 2015 by Lori Reasoner, a paraprofessional counselor with experience with suicide, and me. Since Summer 2016, my Peer Co-Facilitator is Cari Gottstein. Up to twelve people participate in each eight(or so)-session series of this group. Participants are asked to commit to a whole series. We offer three series annually, starting mid-September, late-January or early-February, and early-June. Helpful information is on Facebook at Stayin’ Alive. If you, or someone you know, are/is interested, please contact me to arrange a time to discuss joining this group. Thank you.
Suicide Prevention resources: a variety of specialized lists available
Please leave a message at 785.331.6440
or email M.Epstein.LMSW@gmail.com