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How to talk about thoughts of self-harm and maybe death

Community Member

Hey, first I am safe right now. I am not thinking of things right now, and whenever I have thought about it I haven't gotten close to doing things, I'm able to take a step back and stuff. I could be in a better spot but that's the idea.

So, I have a GP appointment coming up and I know what things I need to say. Namely that I am thinking the things I am, and it's affecting my ability to look after myself, paticularly taking far too much effort to eat food. But the conversation scares me, I had to talk myself out of cancelling yesterday. Doesn't help that I'm so low energy and my GP isn't exactly local. She's a great GP though, I couldn't have imagined telling any of my prior GPs I was feeling this way, and I have seen more than a few gps in these 20ish years. So I shouldn't go to a new one just to not have to deal with a long commute. But yes, I have no idea how to talk to such a supportive GP about this. How do I say things, how am I framing them?

Most google results are how to talk to someone you think is suicidal, not what to do as the suicidal person so I guess I was just hoping for some perspective. Ultimately, if I don't know what I'm doing I can go to my GP and say "hey I don't know how to say this but I'm struggling to eat or see a future". I'm framing this as a question but ig im just hoping someone's able to share their perspective and that might help with nerves.

Also I tried to talk to a friend about this and, well I did everything I could without saying it to check they could have that conversation. But once they knew what it was about they weren't able to be there for me. And, I can accept that I'm just worried about them. I can imagine they don't feel great about having to say "sorry I can't do this" and.. yeah. If anyone has any thoughts on that too. If I can do anything for them.

31 Replies 31

Community Member

I've spent most of the day crying. Some of it sleeping. I'm safe, but I'm scared and I really just want to reach out to the people I could always talk to except I don't know what to say anymore. I dont think theyre there in that way anymore, but Feeling like I could talk to people really made a lot of difference getting through a lot of horrible shit.

I think about how recently they said they were worried about me, and asked me to look after myself. And I wasn't really doing this bad at the time. But oh it hurts to think about that now. Even wonder if maybe they just saw it before I did.

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello Dear CaramelCrisp,

I really am so sorry that you’ve been crying today...I wish that I could be sitting with you...

I know it’s not the same as speaking to people in real life, but please don’t hesitate to ring our lovely trained councillors on 1300 22 4636...They really do listen and will help talk you through what’s happening to you....I have rung them and they helped me...

How long lovely CaramelCrisp until you have your GP appointment?....remember as well that we are here to chat with you and support you the very best we can....

Sometimes, when we are hurting our minds really do make things more difficult then they really are...Your friends sounds like they do care about you..as they said to you they are worried about you and for you to look after yourself....Im sure they do care for you....have you tried ringing/contacting them at all....

Have you tried at night, when you go to bed to listen to “Dan Jones..sleep stories”..you can search them on you tube...Listening to them while you fall asleep to help settle your unhealthy thoughts before sleep....They work for me most times...just a gentle suggestion lovely CaramelCrisp...I do hope that you might try..no pressure at all though..

My kindest thoughts with my care CaramelCrisp..


Hello CaramelCrisp, there is a good chance these people knew what you have been struggling with as they themselves could have and even if it's in another way, the end result can be the same.

Write down your thoughts so you can just hand this document over to the doctor, this helps you when they ask you 'how can I help you', it's possible you could freeze, but if it's written in point form, rather than a letter, they will be able to see the points you're making, quicker and in a concise way.

They will be able to ask you a few questions and depending on your reaction will indicate how you are feeling.

Good luck.


Community Member

Hello to you both again

Appreciate the kind words Grandy,

Sometime last night I did webchat with a Beyond Blue councillor and that did help, one of the things I talked to them about was friendships, I didn't realise I had fallen back into thinking of myself as a burden to them, and thats a big reason I was so sad. So with that, afterwards I got in contact with a few friends. Might be doing something with one of them Thursday, and at least hearing from another friend made me feel better even if we dont have any plans. We will eventually Im sure and, just hearing from them makes this a better day than yesterday. Its been a lonely month or so. Our minds do make things harder sometimes and I think thats really what yesterday was. Some of that loneliness is not from a lack of people there for me. Just struggling with some of the changes, seeing people less. Worry about losing people again. But there are still people there for me. And yeah the people who have expressed concerns about me have definitely been through their own hardships. I've been there for some of them, and they've talked to me about others. They mean so much to me.

I've never heard of Sleep Stories, I'll look into that. The Beyond Blue Counsellor also sent me a mindfullness resource that I have only started to look at but I hope will help. I appreciate the recommendation Grandy and am glad it works for you.

Just under a week to my GP appointment Grandy, and I already started making bullet points for myself Geoff so its good to hear of another way that might come in handy.

Hope I didn't miss anything in my reply, thank you both again 🙂 kind thoughts to you both

Ended up leaving university halfway yesterday. The lecturer was very understanding at least and hopefully will not affect things too much, but it makes me sad that it is such a struggle to engage with any of the things I can still enjoy. Makes me worry I need to withdraw from classes this semester.

My emotions always get funny going out right now, maybe it is the memories of leaving the house for something more (friends and such). But usually these past few weeks I can give myself time to cry, accept feelings and continue on my day. I do not know if my mental health is affecting my physical health or if it is unrelated, but I brought up a bit of my breakfast that morning and had to leave a few hours early. Lecturer is kind and understanding at least, and I have an access plan. At least I already have a doctors appointment only days away now, if things get more serious I know to get more immediate help. I felt very faint this morning but have been able to stay in bed and rest. Did have to reschedule some plans because of it though

I don't think I have been thinking of harming myself as much the past few days at least. Even if its temporary I am glad for that.

Dear CaramelCrisp

Thank you for finding the energy to share this with us all! We are all proud of you for the bravery and commitment you are showing here. It is really hard, but you are sticking with your care plans and that is wonderful!

We are very releaved to here, also, that you have a very supportive lecturer. Sometimes, that just makes so much difference! As to the physical - just a quick reminder that, yes, sometimes anxiety especially (but also depression) can have very real physical impacts, especially with fatigue and the stomach, but we are grateful that you are reaching out with your GP!

And, as you said so beautifully, more immediate help is here, if you need us, or at lifeline on 13 11 14.

Be proud of yourself!


Sophie M. 

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello Dear CaramelCrisp,

Awe, you were so brave contacting your friends the way you felt...goes to show that you really are stronger and braver then your anxiety mind tells you..I am so proud of you for doing that..,

It’s okay cry, I believe that crying in the only way our soul heals itself...I mean a broken bone needs plaster to heal... mental illness I think doesn’t just effect our mind but also hurts our soul...tears help to release our hurt to start making us feel better...just my thoughts..

I too am also pleased that your lecturer is very supportive...

Im sorry you felt faint this morning and had to stay in bed..I do hope you’re feeling better tonight....not long now until you have your Drs appointment..you are holding out very well...You warmed my heart so much when I read that you haven’t been thinking about harming yourself ...You are a very valued member of our community and I for one do like you a lot...and would be so sad if you harmed yourself...

The sleep stories really are very calming...Dan Jones (the reader) has a very gentle and calm voice...(he is a hypnotist) when he reads his stories, his stories as well are written to give us a relaxed and calming feeling before we drift off to sleep....

Keep talking her when you feel up to it...to keep us updated on how your feeling....we are here for you dearest CaramelCrisp...

My kindest thoughts with my care...(a gentle hug 🤗 if that’s okay)..


Hello again

Thank you both again for your responses, the last few days have been rough but better. Still feeling naueseous and occassionaly feint which is why its taken a few days to respond, although i read your messages at the time and they made my days a bit nicer 🙂 Thinking more emotions might be the cause because last night I noticed something (i cant remember what) upset me and then I felt everything go funny. I do also feel this way when my emotions are calmer however.

Although unless my memory fails me I've not really had thoughts of harm since Tuesday. Sometimes my memory fails me with difficult stuff, thats a whole other thing I have already been trying to talk to doctors about because its caused me to make some poor judgments in the past year. Still going to mention I had those feelings to my gp, and well I still feel depressed, but its something.

I appreciate you both seeing strength in me, thats nice to hear. And yeah, absolutely means a lot to have my lecturer's support too.

I agree Grandy, I find crying to be an emotionally healing experience generally. Feel much better after it. Usually anyway, crying all day is a bit different.

I havent had the energy yet to check stuff out, but those sleep stories do sound nice. Might want some nicer headphones to lie in too.

Thank you again, I really appreciate you and this friendly community

Not quite sure what the feeling is, but I went from posting quite frequently here to not checking the site for about a fortnight. I finally had the gp appointment just after my last post. I think thats represented a shift in things, for... probably better overall but lots of new challenges and pain too.

She agreed my feinting and nausea and pain were probably all mental health, as my blood pressure was fine, blood test just before I saw her was normal, and I spent 30 minutes in her office crying about how hard things are at home and now going through a breakup too. Could barely speak for half of it. I think I needed that though. I felt much safer being vulnerable in that office than I ever could at home, and with family talking behind my back last night theyve been quick to reiterate why thats the case. But despite that, and wishing I did have more opportunity to fully feel what im feeling, i think ive held back less feelings since the gp appointment.

Continuing from my last post, I haven't been dealing with thoughts of self-harm in this time. Still eating mostly. Spend most of my time in bed either sleeping, crying or feeling too sick to get up though. Missed a few weeks of uni because of it which im sad about but, I need this time to get better

Hung out with friends online whenever i have been up to that too. For numerous reasons I don't have as much opportunity to see people in person at present, and i dont think im ready to make new connections, I have tried to. But yeah, I appreciate the friends I can still see a lot.

Yeah, just have to keep on keeping on, and look after myself

see my psychologist in a couple of days. First time since so many things there's no way to cover it all in 30min and I'm a bit overwhelmed at what to even mention now.

I try to have the conversation now to practice but I get stuck. I know I say I'm not doing well. But I've never talked to her about my abuser before. Family have come up a bit in the past but... well last time that conversation was cut short with a "you have plans to move out with friends" which was a good thing to focus on, it helped back in February when this started bringing me down again, and well those friends have left me behind, not just from that but friendship so... I get to tell her that this time.

Did at least talk about friendship issues this time, get to tell her it wasn't just my insecurities

Actually I do suppose writing this out has given me more of a framework for the conversation, or at least the start of tidying up everything in my head.

But still, very daunting conversation. Probably get a longer session next time, I didn't think to change it