"Intuition and fear are much faster than any computer and, in
the case of recognizing the warning signs of suicide,
much more reliable. ”
-Paul Quinnett, Ph.D.,
Founder & CEO, QPR Institute
Piling on of Ordinary Life Stressors as a Predictor
of Potential Suicide: Bill’s Story
-Carolyn V. Coarsey, Ph.D.
Trudy attended QPR Gatekeeper Training and felt good about the
experience. She had no idea how quickly she would use what she had
learned to help a fellow employee. While things were not great at
work, Trudy had no way of knowing how down-trodden some of her
friends had become. The employee team, normally cohesive and
self-motivated were unhappy about the two people in charge of the
workplace. Passive-aggressive, the two men who ran the business,
banded together against those who did the work.
A day or so following the class, Trudy was texting with her colleague, Bill,
about normal work issues when she detected something that caused her
concern. Bill seemed more down than she thought normal for him. She
continued texting and as he responded, her concerns grew. Trudy was
already aware that Bill, a very intelligent, but very meek family man was
being bullied by their bosses. Trudy had also learned that Bill had a history
of being bullied in school as a child.
Bill began telling her that his old truck had broken down and on top of that
when his wife’s car broke down he had no way of getting to work. Trudy’s
concerns grew as he went on to tell her that his son, who was a college
student, needed money to buy books and he was unable to provide it. His
hard-luck story continued when he mentioned that he was embarrassed
over the condition of his clothing. Bill sounded as though he was on
a downward spiral.
"Before you can help prevent suicide, you first believe that
self-destruction lies within the reach of every human being; to
believe otherwise is to deny any hope of deterrence."
-Paul Quinnett, Ph.D.,
Founder & CEO, QPR Institute
Reading Bill’s text caused Trudy to think about her QPR Gatekeeper
Training. She asked Bill if he was okay. He texted back that he had begun
to think that life was not worth living. Trudy did not have his wife’s
contact details, nor did she know how to go to his side. Bill stopped
texting and this frightened Trudy. She contacted a co-worker who knew
where to find him and he went immediately to Bill’s side. Together the
work team began to restore Bill’s faith in people—and life.
Someone had an old car they no longer drove. He gave the car to Bill.
Someone else came up with the money for his son’s books at college.
Another co-worker gave him clothing that was whole, attractive, and fit
him. The team rallied around Bill, all the while letting him know that
everyone goes through tough times and that they were there for him.
Shortly after the team became involved, Trudy was relieved to see Bill
behaving more like himself. During this time, she learned that Bill had
also quit his job, but was so encouraged by how his teammates
supported him, he asked for his job back. He got the job back and
received a raise.
Bill came through his crisis with the support of Trudy and his teammates.
Shortly after Bill resumed his job, the team approached the Chairman of
the Board of the organization. The two leaders who contributed to the
Bill’s problems and created a difficult work environment for the entire
team were terminated and replaced. The new leaders are well-received
by Bill and the entire work group.
Looking back on the situation involving Bill, Trudy expressed gratitude
for having had the QPR Gatekeeper Training where listening and
responding to one’s intuition is emphasized and encouraged. Warning
signs are often subtle, and risk factors (such as Bill’s job loss) are not
always known, but a sensitive co-worker armed with training, knows
what to look for. And more importantly, when they recognize signs of a
potential tragedy, they waste no time in taking positive action. Bill’s
story is also an excellent example of the power of team work, a major
tenant of the QPR Suicide Prevention program.
QPR stands for Question, Persuade and Refer and is a research-based
intervention that anyone can learn. The Foundation works with the QPR
Institute to customize this successful intervention for cruise lines,
aviation, human resources professionals and other workplace groups.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org at the Foundation if you would
like to know more about how you can learn to be a QPR Gatekeeper in your
organization. You can also learn how you can become a certified trainer
of the QPR Gatekeeper model. Contact the Foundation to discuss your
Asia Member-Partner Meeting + Air, Land, & Sea Workshop +
April 12, 2018 Cathay Pacific Airways HQ, Free 3-Hour QPR Gatekeeper
April 13, 2018 Cathay Pacific Airways HQ, 8-Hour QPR Gatekeeper
© 2018 QPR Institute Inc./Family Assistance Education & Research Foundation
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