Written by: Samantha Redd, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
I sit here this morning in stunned silence. My daughter has just informed me that another one of her favorite YouTubers has committed suicide. It happens so often their friends immediately do “Fly Highs,” whether it’s memorial videos with those words or just mentioning it on their channel; they all know what to do. This generation has been through so much, and many of our children are crumbling under the weight. Moms have told me that their child as young as nine has had thoughts and even attempted suicide.
So, on Suicide Prevention Month, I would like to talk about our children and suicide when there is a toxic parent in their life.
I have met many mothers of high conflict divorce who have lost children to suicide. In addition, children with one toxic parent are most likely mentally abused and possibly even weaponized against the healthy parent. This manipulation takes a significant toll on the child, and we as healthy parents have to start the conversation with our children; just like anything else in life, we must create an in-the-moment plan for their safety.
Suicide attempts in children tend to be spontaneous and not planned out like adults. We need to be there to ride the temporary storm with our children at the moment when these intense feelings happen. I will provide some helpful tips, but these work in conjunction with therapy, not in place of a good therapist.
Develop a plan with your child. Such as, “I know you have these intense sad/negative thoughts, and I want to help you through them because they are not forever thoughts, even though it might feel that way. Are there some cue words or actions you do that let me know you are feeling that way?”
Create a reason for a living list with them and discuss each one to create meaning.
Let them have a list of adults they can call and give your child the suicide prevention number 988, or they can text 988 if they prefer.
Create positive affirmations and write them down or post them throughout the house. I have stickers everywhere.
Finally, if you are concerned about this, remove the temptation. Take anything that could be dangerous out and put them somewhere else.
I hope we never have to deal with a successful suicide attempt, and it is one of the reasons I got into my business, to help parents protect their children. But unfortunately, it happens, and with these tips in your pocket, hopefully, it won’t happen to you.
Samantha Redd, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Samantha Redd is an expert in trauma recovery through using shadow work and her death doula training. She works with moms who are domestic violence survivors in high conflict divorce by using a mix of real-world experience and a unique view of spirituality to educate, heal, inspire, protect, and rebuild her clients and help them find their purpose. Samantha has a Ph.D. in Chemistry and uses her expertise in that field to help her clients understand the link between stress and sickness. In addition, she has dedicated her life to helping people recover from loss and find their way back to their true selves as a way of honoring the growth that comes with that loss. She is also the CEO of Decoding the System and has been helping people with grief for 20 years. Samantha is also a high conflict divorce survivor and wears a mask and pen name because she can only be present and a light for others by hiding in the darkness.