Suicide Resources in Alberta: What to Do and Who to Contact

Mallory J Greene
Mallory J Greene
May 20th 2024 - 6 minute read
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If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts or tendencies, it is crucial to know what to do and who to contact for support. This blog post provides valuable information and resources available in Alberta to help navigate this challenging situation.

Suicide is a complex and deeply troubling issue that affects individuals, families, and communities across Alberta. If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts or has attempted suicide, it is crucial to know what steps to take and who to contact for support. This blog post aims to provide valuable information and resources to help those in need navigate this challenging situation.

Understanding Suicide

Suicide is the act of intentionally ending one's own life. It is often the result of intense emotional pain, hopelessness, and a belief that there is no other way to escape the suffering. People who consider suicide may feel overwhelmed by life's challenges, experience mental health issues, or struggle with substance abuse.

It is essential to recognize that suicidal thoughts and behaviors are not a sign of weakness or a character flaw. They are a manifestation of deep emotional distress that requires compassionate support and professional intervention.

Warning Signs of Suicide

Identifying the warning signs of suicide can help you recognize when someone is at risk and take appropriate action. Some common warning signs include:

  1. Talking about wanting to die or kill oneself
  2. Expressing feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, or worthlessness
  3. Withdrawing from friends, family, and activities
  4. Displaying extreme mood swings or sudden changes in behavior
  5. Increasing alcohol or drug use
  6. Giving away prized possessions or making final arrangements
  7. Saying goodbye to loved ones as if they won't be seen again

If you notice any of these warning signs in yourself or someone else, it is crucial to take them seriously and seek help immediately.

What to Do in a Suicidal Crisis

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger of self-harm or suicide, it is essential to take swift action:

1. Call 911 or your local emergency services right away. Stay with the person until help arrives and remove any potentially harmful objects from the area.

2. If you are not in immediate danger but need support, contact a crisis helpline:

  • Alberta Mental Health Helpline: 1-877-303-2642 (available 24/7)
  • Canada Suicide Prevention Service: 1-833-456-4566 (available 24/7)
  • Crisis Services Canada: 1-833-456-4566 or text 45645 (available 4 PM to 12 AM ET)

3. Reach out to a trusted friend, family member, or mental health professional for support and guidance.

4. If you are concerned about someone else's safety, do not leave them alone. Stay with them until they can receive professional help or you can ensure their safety.

Who to Contact for Help

In addition to emergency services and crisis helplines, there are several resources available in Alberta for those struggling with suicidal thoughts or behaviors:

  1. Mental Health Clinics: Contact your local mental health clinic or primary care provider for an assessment and referral to appropriate services.
  2. Employee and Family Assistance Programs (EFAP): Many employers offer EFAP services, which provide confidential counseling and support for mental health concerns.
  3. Community Organizations: Reach out to local organizations that specialize in suicide prevention and mental health support, such as the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) or the Distress Centre Calgary.
  4. Online Resources: Websites like the Centre for Suicide Prevention ( and the Government of Alberta's Mental Health Support page ( offer valuable information and resources.

Supporting Someone Who is Suicidal

If someone you care about is struggling with suicidal thoughts, it is essential to approach the situation with compassion and understanding. Here are some ways you can support them:

  1. Listen without judgment: Allow the person to express their feelings and thoughts openly. Avoid minimizing their experiences or offering simplistic solutions.
  2. Show your concern: Let them know that you care about their well-being and that you are there to support them through this difficult time.
  3. Ask about suicide directly: Don't be afraid to ask if they are considering suicide. Asking about suicide does not put the idea in their head; instead, it shows that you are concerned and willing to discuss the topic openly.
  4. Encourage professional help: Urge the person to seek support from a mental health professional or contact a crisis helpline. Offer to assist them in finding and accessing these resources.
  5. Follow up: Check in with the person regularly to see how they are doing and to remind them that you are there for them.

Taking Care of Yourself

Supporting someone who is suicidal can be emotionally taxing. It is crucial to take care of your own mental health and well-being during this time:

  1. Set boundaries: Establish clear limits on what you can and cannot do to support the person. It is essential to maintain your own safety and well-being.
  2. Practice self-care: Engage in activities that help you relax, recharge, and cope with stress, such as exercise, meditation, or spending time with loved ones.
  3. Seek support: Talk to a trusted friend, family member, or mental health professional about your experiences and emotions. It is okay to ask for help when you need it.

Suicide is a serious issue that requires immediate attention and support. By understanding the warning signs, knowing what to do in a crisis, and being aware of the available resources, you can make a significant difference in the lives of those struggling with suicidal thoughts or behaviors.

Remember, you are not alone in this journey. There is help available, and recovery is possible. If you or someone you know is in distress, reach out for support today. Together, we can work towards a future where no one feels that suicide is their only option.

If you are grieving the loss of a loved one to suicide, know that support is available to help you through this difficult time. Organizations like the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) and the Alberta Funeral Services Association (AFSA) offer resources and guidance for those coping with the unique challenges of suicide bereavement.

At Eirene Cremations, we understand the profound impact that suicide can have on families and communities. Our compassionate team is here to provide the support and guidance you need during this trying time. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.