Government of Western Australia

Helping friends or family

If you want to help someone you know there are five key steps:

Do something now – Take warning signs seriously and don’t delay.

Be there for them – Spend time with the person, encourage them to talk about how they are feeling, and help them get help.

Ask if they are thinking of suicide. Talking about suicide will not put the idea into their head but will encourage them to talk about their feelings.

Keep them safe. If someone is considering suicide, remove any means of self-harm available, including weapons, medications, alcohol and other drugs, even access to a car. Ask them to promise they will ask for help if suicidal thoughts return.

If necessary, organise with others to take shifts around the clock to be with the person.

Take action. Help the person get support through local health professionals such as:

  • GPs
  • counsellors, psychologists, social workers
  • Aboriginal Health Workers
  • school counsellors, youth workers or school chaplains
  • mental health services
  • community health centres
  • telephone and web-based counselling services



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