Parent of young adult suicide attempt

Can anyone on here help?!
My 23-year old daughter attempted suicide on Tuesday night. We took her to hospital on Wednesday morning, when we found her and, thankfully she is physically okay and has been discharged from hospital after 36 hours. But she has merely been given a bunch of useless leaflets, a reassurance that her life is great (!) and a mental health appointment on Sunday. I am trying to support her, my husband is just angry with her and I cannot find any support, even online, for myself. Any suggestions? (NHS website is useless). I need to know if I should be trying to talk to my daughter about her feelings (I am, but it’s hard for her and I’m afraid I’m making it worse!) She still feels desperate and confused. She was on anti-depressants, which clearly didn’t help.

Hi, I am sorry to hear about your daughter. Mental health is tough and it affects people beyond the individual. I have dealt with my mums mental health my whole life and it is so tough.

I believe things have got progressively harder in recent years when it comes to mental health treatment. It’s often the case that an individual has to go through multiple episodes before they get high level treatment, however that doesn’t mean treatment isn’t available. You kind of have to work through the ranks, however it is great that you have an appointment.

However, my advice would be to ring the NHS mental health response service and the GP.

I don’t know what part of the country you live, so I can’t provide targeted info. However if you ring them, they may be able to provide some extra help too.

The GP will be able to refer for counselling as a basic level of treatment. Alternatively the response service are your port of call for the crisis team, and they can offer an assessment. If successful they can offer a care coordinator who can offer a whole range of treatments.

Thanks so much for responding. I will try our GP Surgery.

Hi Julia,

I’m sorry to hear about your daughter’s suicide attempt and the lack of support provided so far. This must have been so frightening.

In addition to Coolcar’s advice; you may find this website helpful, as might your daughter:

They have advice and support for both young people and their families.

They also have a Parents Helpline, Webchat and Email service.​

Dear Julia

As a parent of a daughter who is suicidal myself I feel for you and your daughter.
I feel trying to talk is important.
I said to my daughter
I could have lost you, I am so grateful you are still alive.
I was searching for words that could express my love at that time.
I am sure you will find your words and she hers.
Much warmth Ula

Thanks so much for responding. I will keep trying to talk to her.

Thanks for this. I will give them a try.

Finding your daughter must have been very frightening, yet a blessing to be fortunate enough to have found her in time.
It’s good news she is physically well after attempting to end her own life.
The real problem is your daughter’s psychological well-being and that’s something as a family you need to focus on.
It’s frightening to face the realisation that seeking help can be a challenge, after being given a few leaftets and little else at such a difficult, stressful and emotional time.
It’s certainly worth exploring what help is available, such as your own doctor - who could refer your daughter to a counsellor.
For your daughter, it’s going to be the start of a journey in which she’ll need to explore the origins of why she wanted to end her own life.
Anti-depressants don’t resolve the underlying cause of the depression, so the problem is always there.
Perhaps underneath, the true extent of your daughter’s depression may not have been revealed whilst she was able to conceal at least some of the problem - perhaps even from herself.
Yet after so long, the fight can become too much.
Your husband’s anger may be his way of trying to understand and deal with what’s happened, combined with confusion, fear and desperation of not knowing what to do or who to ask for help.
It’s always difficult because this affects everyone in the family and yet, nobody can see or understand what is really happening inside someone’s mind.
Due to the hidden depth of the mind, even someone who suffers from depression cannot explain why they feel the way they do.
A progressive and ever growing element in our modern society is that more children are dealing with mental health problems than ever before due to the complexities and demands of modern childhood.
Their problems continue as they try to negotiate the journey into adulthood.
Sadly. Much is still not understood about the reality of what is happening with regard to mental health issues today and it is getting worse.
Hurried health assessments, medication and a few leaflets in a society where people are so easily dismissive of others are not enough for what is an ever growing problem.
Appreciating that you’ve not written about your daughter’s situation prior to wanting to end her life, there can be many problems surrounding someone so young that have been ongoing for a long time.
At present, you feel that you’ve not received much help from the hospital and it doesn’t give you much confidence in order to help your daughter.
To your daughter - who (in her situation) may be very sensitive - handing out leaflets will appear as a procedural dismissal, as if being told you need to move on.
Being reassured her life is great…Fair enough.
If only it was that simple.
Hopefully. The mental health appointment will give some help to your daughter and hopefully lead on to some counselling.
Try all you can to seek further help.
The help-lines will be of benefit, if only the comfort of a listening ear.
From your daughter’s perspective, she needs to work through the depression which may involve counselling/therapy to talk over some past, very personal issues.
The counselling may need to be provided by someone who works in ‘private practice’ due to the possibility of there being a waiting list and limited appointments when using the public health service.
It is understandable to feel frustrated at being handed a few leaflets and told life is wonderful. In fairness to the hospital professionals, their intensions were good, but there’s only so much they can do.
Taking the anti-depressants (and stopping the medication) should be done under the appropriate medical advice.
The counselling, re-building her confidence and trying to look positive towards the future will help your daughter in the long term.
It’s heartbreaking, but all you can do is give your daughter the gentle encouragement she needs.
Encourage your husband to talk to you whenever he feels angry or hurt.
This is very painful, yet hopefully your daughter will find the strength to overcome this.


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I am so sorry to hear about your daughter. I have a son who has attempted suicide , so I can empathise somewhat.As a family you will experiencing a whole range of emotions.

Counselling can really help, for all of you.

There are a lot of agencies who can also offer online counselling as well as face to face, such as Anxiety UK.

I see you haven’t posted for a while and hope things are improving?