Common Teenage Suicide Warning Signs

teenage suicide warning signs

Awhile back I talked about the symptoms our son Bud had that led to us finally realizing that he needed emotional help (that story can be found here).

Suffice it to say that one day Bud texted me from school saying, “I might as well kill myself.”  Art and I read that as a suicide threat, so we immediately called the school and took action to make sure Bud was protected.  Later, Bud asked me why we made such a big deal.  “I wasn’t going to kill myself,” he told me.  “I just said I might as well since nothing was going right.”  Huh?  Is that teenage logic?  How am I, as a parent, supposed to know the difference?  Is there a difference?

According to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry:

When a child makes a serious threat it should not be dismissed as just idle talk. Parents, teachers, or other adults should immediately talk with the child. If it is determined that the child is at risk and the child refuses to talk, is argumentative, responds defensively, or continues to express violent or dangerous thoughts or plans, arrangements should be made for an immediate evaluation by a mental health professional with experience evaluating children and adolescents. – AACAP

teenage suicide warning signsIn retrospect, now more than 3 1/2 years later, I believe we did the right thing.  After we called the school, the vice-principal and Bud’s counselor immediately pulled Bud out of class and kept him in a quiet room until we got there.  Bud felt that the treatment was harsh, but I know that the school was looking out for his safety, even if “bedside manners” were not the best.  In addition, if this incident had not occurred, we might never have realized the extent of Bud’s insomnia or depression and he would not have received the help he so badly needed.  I would encourage you, even if your child is a “drama king” to take any threat of harm seriously.

Since I originally wrote this post three years ago, we have had a few more cries for help from Bud, which called for medication adjustments, and therapy or lifestyle changes.  Below is a list of some common warning signs for teenage (and young adult) suicide from

  • Prior Suicide Attempts
  • Talking About or Threatening Suicide
  • Making a Plan
  • Giving Away Prized Possessions
  • Preoccupation with Death
  • Signs of Depression, Hopelessness, Anxiety
  • Increased Drug and/or Alcohol Use

If you notice any of these signs in someone you care about, please, at the very least start a dialogue with that person, or if possible, seek professional help.

For more information, you can visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.


Sweet Corn Fritters

sweet corn frittersI’ve decided I may have to name my Wednesday blog “Food Porn” since lately I have been posting recipes for food we all enjoy but know we shouldn’t have.  So if you’re trying to eat healthy like I am, then you can either make a half batch, do like I did and make a full batch but only eat a few, or just enjoy the pictures and the recipe (too bad there’s no Smell-a-Vison app!)

Sweet Corn Fritters


oil for frying

1 cup flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp sugar

(salt and sugar are more to taste depending on if you like your fritters sweeter or saltier.  This particular recipe is more even, so you can either dip them in ranch dressing or maple syrup when you’re done, whichever you prefer.)

1 egg, lightly beaten

1/2 cup milk

1 Tbsp. melted butter

1 can (14 oz.) sweet kernel corn, drained


Heat oil in a heavy pot, at least 3 inches deep, until a tiny amount of batter will sizzle when dropped in.

In a medium bowl, combine all the other ingredients.

Drop fritter batter by heaping teaspoonfuls into the hot oil and fry until golden.

Drain on paper towels.

Serve warm with your favorite sweet or savory condiment.

sweet corn frittersEnjoy!!