suicidal thoughts

Suicidal Thoughts | How to Support Someone Experiencing This

Depression and Anxiety Therapist in Florida

Ashley Gersh LMHC

Licensed Mental Health Counselor

It’s normal to feel a range of emotions from sad and scared to frustrated and confused when your loved one has expressed experiencing suicidal thoughts. You might be asking yourself what can I do to support them? How do I help them through their darkest moments? Here are seven tips on how to help your loved ones.

  1. If you’ve noticed warning signs, don’t be afraid to ask about suicidal thoughts. Asking someone if they are considering suicide does not put the idea into their head. If someone is already thinking about suicide, then bringing it up will not be new to them. In fact, it could instead make them feel less alone having someone provide a nonjudgmental space for them to express their feelings.
  2. If you’re unsure if someone is feeling suicidal it is helpful to be direct. You can repeat their words back to them to make sure you heard them correctly. You can also ask: “Are you thinking about suicide? Or “Are you having thoughts of ending your life?” It’s normal to feel hesitant when asking about suicide, but if the person was already feeling suicidal, then the feelings were there before you even asked. Your dialogue can help pave the path towards seeking help.
  3. Follow up with empathy. Opening up about suicide can feel extremely vulnerable. Validate that it must be hard for them to feel this way. You want to show support, not shame or guilt them. Telling someone that they shouldn’t feel the way they do can only make the person feel more isolated, rejected, or guilty. It is helpful to let them know that you are there for them, you care, and that you are listening.
  4. Assess for risk. Suicidal thoughts do not always mean crisis. However, if the person has a plan in place for how they would kill themselves, then they are at high risk of acting on it. If you’re unsure how to discuss with someone the degree to which they’ve been thinking about suicide, psychiatrists at Columbia University created the Columbia Protocol, a risk-assessment tool, stemming from evidence-based research validating the relevance and effectiveness for its use with assessing suicide for all ages. The Columbia Protocol, walks you through a series of six easy-to-understand questions that provide you with answers as to whether someone is at risk for suicide, the severity and immediacy of that risk, and the level of support that person needs.
  5. If they are in imminent danger don’t let them be alone. The National Suicide Prevention Line provides 5 steps to take when you know someone is in imminent danger. If you can, offer to stay with them, or help them find social support or medical help that can show up immediately. If they have items around to harm themselves with, help work to remove those items from their environment. Creating a safety plan can serve as a preventative measure in the future by helping the person identify reasons for living, coping strategies, warning signs that a crisis might be developing, and a support system to reach out to when they begin to experience suicidal thoughts. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to help you get through a crisis.
  6. If they are not in a crisis, encourage them to seek professional support and see what they are comfortable with. You can help them navigate through the mental health care system. DeQuincy Lezine, psychologist, suicide attempt survivor, and member of the board of directors of the American Association of Suicidology, said in an npr article, “When you’re feeling really down and feeling like you don’t matter as much, you might not want to take the time, or think that it’s worth the time” to go through with counseling and getting help. Following up and offering to help someone connect with mental health resources can prevent a future crisis by finding medications to help or ways to manage mood and suicidal thinking.
  7. Take care of yourself. Implementing your own self-care will allow you to best show up for the ones you love. Identify a strong support system you can reach out to during times of stress. Reach out to those who make you feel loved and safe. Talk with family, friends, or religious community leaders you can rely on. Part of helping to show how there is goodness and hope in life is by being able to partake in the things that make you believe in this too. Engage in things that bring you joy and happiness, that make you laugh and smile, and that make you feel fulfilled. Make sure you’re meeting your needs with enough rest, exercise, healthy eating, and social engagements. It can be helpful to also seek out your own mental health support. Just as you reflect and engage in the resources available to you, remind the person experiencing suicidal thoughts of the resources that exist that are available to help them too.
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therapy services in florida

Virtual Counselor in Florida

Virtual counseling services in the State of Florida have made it easier for individuals to access help remotely. Ashley Gersh LMHC makes it possible to receive mental health therapy and counseling services virtually through her website

The professional background of Ashley Gersh centers around helping people through their mental or emotional issues. She is a licensed mental health professional and the founder of As a licensed therapist, Ashley Gersh offers individual counseling, couples and family therapy, and grief and trauma support services through her website. As a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC), she has over 10 years of experience in working with people struggling with depression, anxiety, relationship struggles, intimacy difficulties, grief and trauma. offers several different services to best meet the needs of each individual client. These include individual therapy, teletherapy, couples and marriage counseling, family therapy, and grief and trauma support. Each service is delivered in a supportive and compassionate environment, and utilizes evidence-based approaches to solving mental health issues.

Individual Therapy

Through individual therapy, Ashley Gersh helps clients gain insight into the source of their feelings, identify triggers, and find solutions to their problems. During these sessions, Ashley works to uncover an individual’s inner strengths to empower them to live fully and authentically. She also helps individuals develop new coping skills that may improve their daily life.


Through teletherapy or aka virtual counseling, clients can connect with Ashley Gersh from anywhere in the world. Teletherapy sessions provide an intimate and private atmosphere to express emotions and explore inner thoughts without having to leave the comfort of home. Ashley provides individual sessions to address specific mental health issues as well as couples and family therapy sessions.

Couples & Marriage Counseling

Through counseling couples therapy, Ashley Gersh helps couples improve their relationship. In sessions, couples learn better communication skills, learn to work through conflicts together, and express their emotions in a healthy way. Ashley also assists couples with major life transitions such as marriage, divorce, and parenting.

Family Therapy

In family therapy sessions, Ashley Gersh provides an environment for family members to work on their relationships with each other. During the sessions, she helps family members to better understand and resolve conflicts. She also teaches family members how to navigate communication issues in order to reach better understandings and outcomes.

Grief & Trauma Support

Through grief and trauma support, Ashley Gersh provides an environment in which individuals can express their emotions and begin to work through their pain. In this type of therapy, she helps individuals gain insight into their thoughts and feelings and encourages them to build resilience and coping skills.

Ashley Gersh is now providing these services virtually and is available throughout Florida’s major cities, including but not limited to:

  • Miami
  • Tampa
  • Orlando
  • Tallahassee
  • Fort Lauderdale
  • Boca Raton
  • West Palm Beach
  • Naples
  • Fort Myers
  • Gainesville
  • Destin
  • Clearwater
  • Daytona
  • Jacksonville
  • Jupiter
  • Sunny Isles
  • Boynton Beach
  • Delray Beach
  • Pompano Beach

This makes it possible for individuals who may not be able to access in-person therapy to access mental health services from wherever they are. Her services are designed to provide quality care, regardless of physical location or financial circumstances. provides a comprehensive range of mental health services that can be accessed virtually. Among them depression therapist stands out. Ashley Gersh’s services include individual therapy, couples and family therapy, teletherapy, and grief and trauma support. These services are available throughout every major city in Florida, making it easy for individuals to receive mental health support from the comfort of their own home. As a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, Ashley Gersh provides these services in an environment that is safe, supportive, and empowering.

Counseling services revolve our core hurdles people may experience everyday including but not limited to:

Individuals, couples, and families on issues such as anxiety, depression, grief, addiction, relationship issues, and trauma.

To book Ashley Gersh LMHC as your anxiety therapist or depression therapist simply call 407-536-7509, email, or book online here.

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