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  1. #1
    Mem's Avatar
    Mem
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    Failing to stop a suicide

    I work on suicide boards. I am controversal poster on police sites. Tonight I felt the pain of a young person that gave up on life. I tried so hard along with other to prevent it but we could not. I know how I feel, and it hurts. How do officers feel when they lose a life in the line of duty? Is it your job? or do you have questions too?

  2. #2
    Garda's Avatar
    Garda is offline Policing with nothing but a smile
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    If you live and die with people you will die, its that simple. Try to be professional and not let it get inside. Of course it does but were the professionals, if you saw a cop crying on the side of the road it would not inspire confidence. Im sure it would get sympathy and compassion from some, others would laugh but ultimately it would dilute the confidence people have in the LEO robots they see.
    Thats why people complain sometimes that LEOs are so cold and robotic. So are doctors, firemen, EMTs' etc. Compassion and feelings can only be expressed under certain circumstances.

    As for your question, yes it effects us but we dont have the luxury of allowing letting it out there and then plus we will be effected by tragedy 100's of times during our careers.
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  3. #3
    MountainCop Guest
    Garda30055A is exactly right. We as LEOs and professionals can't let our emotions interfere with the performance of our duty.

    Does it affect us? Damn straight it does! I would start to be very concerned about someone when it DIDN'T affect them.

    We grieve in private, and try to understand that death is a part of life. Some people just cannot be saved.

  4. #4
    Virginian's Avatar
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    What's a suicide board? Are you or anyone involved professional counselors or something?

  5. #5
    Whitewolf's Avatar
    Whitewolf is offline Hard Of Hearing Non-LEO
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    Quote Originally Posted by Virginian
    What's a suicide board? Are you or anyone involved professional counselors or something?
    I believe a suicide board is a suicide prevention forum which is almost similar to the 800 suicide hotline. Some forums have negative words. I read some, some use capital letters as "yelling." 800 toll-free is more better and privacy (plus it will help officers trace to the person's home with the tracing device in order to save someone's life while the counselors keep on talking to the person) than the forums because forums are open-public and people would often attack the posters who are suicidal. And IPs are difficult to trace than the phone land-line. But again, I have no idea how the suicide prevention forum works.

    I have helped a few deaf ppl who were suicidal in the past. I talked to them IN person. I would use the correct words but sometimes I can be mean at heart after discussing what was happening in their lives (simple for deaf ppl to utd me): "You have life. You are here on this earth, so don't think about killing yourself. It's not worth it since killing yourself is NOT an answer. Living for many years is an answer. Is suicide worth it in your life? No. What would happen if you die and go to heaven? Would He let you in becuz of suicide? No. You would stand before Him just like others would stand before Him. So try to find something better to do than thinking about a suicide plan. Go see the pastors/priests. And get some help at the counselor's office and please don't ever think about this again. Again, it's not an answer. IT never will be." A couple of them I took with me to places for more fun and activity and to get their minds off of the suicidal thoughts. They took it and they're still here now. One I told his family about it because he kept on chattin' over and over NON-stop. I feared for his life. His family rushed him to the hospital for observation and treatment. Dunno why the hospital when they should send him to the counseling office.

    Some deaf ppl are difficult because when one is repeating over and over and one is still here after 10 years and gettin' grayish hairs, we may not know why. We still have to take their words and stop them in tracks b/4 they're about to do something tragedy. They may hate someone for saving life or to prevent a person from doing something so tragedy. It's not that easy.

    Mem: For me, I know it will hurt me but I don't show it if one of them kill himself/herself. I may put my head down and think about it what can be done to prevent more tragedies. Talk them out is what we suppose to do. It's difficult. You have to keep helping others as much as you can, Mem. Don't just stop there, just keep going and save them as much as possible. A few out of 100 may actually do it, while others succeed in living for many years.
    Last edited by Whitewolf; 01-25-06 at 11:05 AM.
    I SEE NEKKED PEOPLE! AIN'T SKEERED!!!!!

  6. #6
    Virginian's Avatar
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    I can see suicide forums as being a big place for prankster kids to hang out and mess with people's emotions. I see no use for them whatsoever. Plus you have a lot of amateur psychologists hanging out there thinking they are helping, and an equal number of punk kids telling the people "do it do it!". Just doesn't seem like a good idea to me. Stick with the phone help lines.

  7. #7
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    I've investigated or reviewed the investigations of more than a hundred suicides and I doubt any of them ever gave a thought to going to asking for any kind of help. Having had PTSD make me suicidal at one point in my own life, I can say that the last thing I would have done was confide anything to a stranger on the phone, much less a bunch of anonymous people on the Internet! What saved my ass was my wife coming home unexpectedly when I was trying to point the .357 at my brain stem so I wouldn't be an asparagus.

    I suspect it's the same for most suicidal people. When we built a new bridge across the river, it was popular for people to stand on it and wait for us to respond to talk them out of jumping. What I used to do was get out of my car, walk directly to them, not saying a word and grab them and pull them back across the concrete barrier. What was hilarious was everyone of them was pissed not because I stopped them, but because I didn't "follow the rules" and try to talk to them first. If any of them had really wanted to commit suicide, they wouldn't have patiently waited for us. Either that or jumped the moment we drove up if they wanted a witness.

    That being said, there are a lot of troubled people who can't afford therapy, but the Internet is hardly the place to find help.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

    "A burning desire for social justice is never a substitute for knowing what you're talking about". -Thomas Sowell-

  8. #8
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    You know I failed a Psych exam in college because I answered a scenerio question just like that. I answered that I would talk to the person and ease my way close enough to make the grab. The professor told me that I would have no right to touch the person. I told him to give me the F and promise to stay hidden in the college system and never become a cop and I would not bitch about him to the dept. head. He gave me the F and I was proud
    "And don't go home, and don't go to eat, and don't play with yourself. It wouldn't look nice on my highway", Buford T. Justice

    #1 Rule in Police: Sometimes its easier to ask Forgiveness than it is to ask Permission

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  9. #9
    Ken K is offline Banned
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    Maybe the internet was about the only way that person could communicate. Seems we have a whole generation learning to do that.

    Keep up the effort.

  10. #10
    Iron Man's Avatar
    Iron Man is offline Don't Tase me bro!
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    My thoughts on the subject: If you are going kill yourself, you would just go out and do it. Not contact anyone that can stop you...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThisGlock40
    My thoughts on the subject: If you are going kill yourself, you would just go out and do it. Not contact anyone that can stop you...
    Exactly right. Nearly all of the suicide jobs I go to are people who have no interest in committing suicide they want attention. I have no problem with that as long as they seize the large amount of help given to them. I have no sympathy when I'm back there the week after with the same person.
    Now this is the Law of the Jungle -- as old and as true as the sky;
    And the Wolf that shall keep it may prosper, but the Wolf that shall break it must die.
    As the creeper that girdles the tree-trunk the Law runneth forward and back --
    For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is thePack

  12. #12
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken K
    Maybe the internet was about the only way that person could communicate. Seems we have a whole generation learning to do that.
    I think they're referred to as people without lives anyway if the only communication they have with the outside world is a computer in their room.
    Last edited by Retdetsgt; 01-25-06 at 08:56 PM.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

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  13. #13
    Ducky's Avatar
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    Hey!


    I resemble that remark....


    Well, aside from all the wild sex and stuff...
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    "...but to forget your duck, of course, means you're really screwed." - Gary Larson
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  14. #14
    Garda's Avatar
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    Most suicides are spur of the moment immediate actions without any preconcieved intent.
    Thats why the vast majority of depressed people DO NOT commit suicide, they are gotten to and helped way before that stage. Almost all suicides could be prevented by talking to the people.

    In our assessments during probation we have to give an example of an incident not crime related that I went beyond my duty. I spoke about having a cup of coffee with a woman (taking off my hat, jacket etc to appear less authoritive as per training) who was really down and eventually coaxing her to samaratons where she got the help she needed. I got 6 out of 7

    That woman approached me on the street because she trusted the uniform and had this belief that we could solve all of lifes problems, I have been to about 6 jumpers none of which ever jumped, 2 OD's both of which rang the station telling us they had ODed and they got pumped. The only suicide death I have been to was a no warning hanging. The surprising thing about him was he planned it days in advance and had a childminder and everythig arranged so he would be alone and his X-wife would find him not 1 of the kids. I suppose theres always exceptions to the rules and I have to say it was a tragic case that I still think about sometimes.

    Bottom line, 99 of 100 people on that site dont really intend to nor want to do it but without help they will eventually get so low that it will become the only way out. If the site helps a few then great but as said before, so much abuse. Is it making more worse than better?
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  15. #15
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    My experience is that most people who kill themselves at the spur of the moment do it for very small things. One in particular I remember because it was the son of another detective. The kid killed himself because his car wouldn't start. Seems silly to us, but it was the last thing is a chain of events that finally made suicide a viable option.

    The other suicides are more or less planned, i.e. situations where the person has a terminal disease and has been thinking of it for a while.

    Interestingly enough, and there is no research I know of to back it up, but I noticed that people who shoot themselves because of a drug and/or alcohol addiction almost always shoot themselves in the head. Sorta to turn off the voices. People who shoot themselves because of sadness over loss in their lives or terminal disease, shoot themselves in the heart.

    During my career, six different officers that I knew committed suicide. Most, but not all were because of alcohol issues. One bastard killed his wife and baby and then ate his own gun. Took everyone by surprise. He was the son of an asst chief.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

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    Garda's Avatar
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    I dont know of any research that specific but in Sweden they researched and found hanging the most common for men and OD for women. Of all the methods used violent methods were most common in men and 'peaceful' for women. Of course Im not sure what their gun laws are like there so their stats may need to be adjusted for the US or Ireland. They do however have very high suicide rates, number 1 in the world I think.

    Oh and euthanasia I wasnt really including as they are knocking on the door anyway.
    Quote Originally Posted by TXCharlie
    Hey thanks Garda - I did think of you last night as I was lying in bed

  17. #17
    121Traffic's Avatar
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    I agree with the general opinion stated above, in that most who are serious don't tell anyone, or do it as soon as help arrives in the form of cops.

    I do believe though that some will go through with it evenually, even after calling for help. We had one call his gf on ehr cell, saying he was wandering a field nearby with a gun. She was able to call us on the house phone before going out looking. We tracked her down and gt updates whenever he gave us clues about his position..."I can see the cops with you now." etc. It was really eerie. Something out of a movie. We scoured every field fitting his description within a mile radius, with no luck. K9s (that went to the wrong fields). Everywhere. He eventually hung up, and we could only get vmail, meaning the phone was off. We cleared the call, and put out a BOLO for him.

    Next day they found him in a drainage ditch with one in the head, cellphone in one hand, his snubbie in the other. That's the one that really gets me, in that he was serious, and did try to get help in a roundabout way, but we didn't find him. Although, it can be argued that he didn't want to be found, otherwise he would have just come out and said where he was. Logical, but of little consolation.
    "If anything worthwhile comes of this tragedy, it should be the realization by every citizen that often the only thing that stands between them and losing everything they hold dear... is the man wearing a badge." -- Ronald Reagan, in the wake of the deaths of 4 CHP troopers in the Newhall Incident, 1970

    The opinions given in my posts DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "121Traffic" on O/R.

  18. #18
    Ken K is offline Banned
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retdetsgt
    One bastard killed his wife and baby and then ate his own gun. Took everyone by surprise. He was the son of an asst chief.
    If you're going to do it then do it alone. We had a young man always drunk and in trouble who was "going to kill a cop first, or maybe just take some car head on."

    When he quietly drowned about 0300 in a small lake in one of our city parks, I thought it was a good conclusion to a bad situation.

  19. #19
    Iron Man's Avatar
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    Not to get to personal and if you feel this in inappropriate for the Non-Verified section don't answer here, but have any of you been to an autoerotic accidental suicide? How common is it?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mem
    I work on suicide boards. I am controversal poster on police sites. Tonight I felt the pain of a young person that gave up on life. I tried so hard along with other to prevent it but we could not. I know how I feel, and it hurts. How do officers feel when they lose a life in the line of duty? Is it your job? or do you have questions too?
    I just hope medics will transport so I don't have to do the death report....

 

 
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