Dr. B's Blog

Talk is cheap (and effective)

MSNBC reports on suicide in the Native American Community:

"Let's say that all your emotions are in a glass of water. When somebody bullies you, dump out a little bit. When somebody offers you drugs and you take those drugs, and then somebody tears you down because you used drugs, pour out a little bit. Eventually that glass of water is going to be empty and that's kind of like your self-esteem. You're going to be empty, so you're going to try to commit suicide," said A.J. Hollom, a 14-year-old student.

The thing that's so sad about adolescents killing themselves is that it's so readily preventable. Teens experience the entire range of emotion but don't have the entire repertoire of coping skills needed to handle them. There are very effective treatments for suicidal adolescents and my method chosen method of treatment, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, is one of them.

For parents, therapists or concerned others, I recommend Dialectical Behavior Therapy for Suicidal Adolescents. I have spoken to the authors and listened to them give lectures and it's a great resource. The book is targeted at clinicians, but it's important for caregivers to be informed, too. If you've got other suggestions for books or resources, please mention them in the comments!