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    Hi

    I was wondering if anyone here is a member of The Samaritans (i.e. does all the telephone listening etc) or who knows of anyone who is.

    I am quite interested in joining as a volunteer (when I'm 18) and was wondering what it is actually like, what it involves, etc - any advice appreciated.

    You can PM me in private if you want.
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    My only experience of the Samaritans has been of when I emailed them a few times when I was depressed (quite badly, but not suicidal or self-harming).
    Basically, unless you are suicidal, they don't want to help you.
    If you think you can deal with that, then I admire you for it - just wanted to warn you.
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    oh, thats quite a good idea, i think id definatley be up for that, is it a religious thing though or just personal?
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    (Original post by Angelil)
    My only experience of the Samaritans has been of when I emailed them a few times when I was depressed (quite badly, but not suicidal or self-harming).
    Basically, unless you are suicidal, they don't want to help you.
    If you think you can deal with that, then I admire you for it - just wanted to warn you.
    I emailed them too when I was having a crappy time a while back and they were really helpful!

    I think they do a great job
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    (Original post by Angelil)
    My only experience of the Samaritans has been of when I emailed them a few times when I was depressed (quite badly, but not suicidal or self-harming).
    Basically, unless you are suicidal, they don't want to help you.
    If you think you can deal with that, then I admire you for it - just wanted to warn you.
    That's not true. They ask if you're suicidal so that they can help you better, but you can phone for any reason. They help everyoine equally, even those who want to know when the pizza shop closes!
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    My grandma is a Samaritan and has been for a long time, she wasn't keen on me becoming one because she said alot of the calls are 'pervy' i.e, what colour underwear are you wearing, weird stuff like that, and you can't hang up on them. It wasn't appropriate for me being a 'young' girl.

    However, I went to a meeting and actually found it really, really intresting. Basically you answer the phone and just listen to peoples problems, but you don't give advice, just options. Theres more info on the website http://www.samaritans.org.

    I decided against it until I was a little bit older because of the fact that you actually could allow some people in the building to talk to them about problems face-to-face. There was only ever two volunteers in the building at the time and that kind of worried me, I don't want to sound judgmental, but the centre was in quite a dodgy area and I wouldn't want to be alone in a room with a drunken man or something.

    Anyway I am a 18-year-old girl, and you probably wouldn't have any worries being a guy (stereotypes and all that!). I suggest finding out where you local Samaritans centre it and finding out about a meeting.
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    (Original post by Angelil)
    Basically, unless you are suicidal, they don't want to help you.


    they dont help if they're sucidal either. They just 'listen'

    The principles of the samaritans disgust me.

    Personally, I think that someone ringing the samaritans saying they're going to commit suicide are doing so as a cry for help. to not prevent them, or try and talk them out of it is disgusting. They're got their principles skewed somewhere.
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    I did the training course a couple of months ago to join... it is very thorough!

    You have to be prepared to give up quite a bit of time and sadly I didn't have enough what with A-levels etc but i'm planning to take it back up later.

    The time commitments are around 4 hours a week minimum and then you have to be prepared to work on a saturday once a month/ every six weeks and help out on an overnighter from 2a.m till 7a.m once every 6 weeks too. However it is flexible and you pick when you give up your time.

    I found it to be a bit too much of a commitment but the training course was very eye opening and I met some interesting people. Good luck if you choose to take it up!

    I got told that people who've been through a lot/ had some life experience or dealt with problems made the best volunteers - you have to be completely unprejudiced and be quite empathetic.

    One thing I would add to this discussion that i totally disagree with is the fact that the Samaritans believe that they must ask if you are suicidal - whether (like angelil mentioned) you are ringing up/emailing without feeling suicidal. I disagree with this because I emailed them a while back when i was very low and i felt angry because i felt like they put the idea in my head - i hadn't contemplated suicide but it angered me that they were trying to ram their motto down my throat.
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    (Original post by El Scotto)

    they dont help if they're sucidal either. They just 'listen'

    The principles of the samaritans disgust me.

    Personally, I think that someone ringing the samaritans saying they're going to commit suicide are doing so as a cry for help. to not prevent them, or try and talk them out of it is disgusting. They're got their principles skewed somewhere.
    i found this i went through a rough patch but i wasn't sucidal, they only are listen to you or take you seriously if you are sucidal, they don't seem to care otherwise even though they say they do
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    (Original post by El Scotto)

    they dont help if they're sucidal either. They just 'listen'

    The principles of the samaritans disgust me.

    Personally, I think that someone ringing the samaritans saying they're going to commit suicide are doing so as a cry for help. to not prevent them, or try and talk them out of it is disgusting. They're got their principles skewed somewhere.

    I think you're missing the point here El Scotto!

    Samaritans' mission

    Samaritans is available 24 hours a day to provide confidential emotional support for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those which may lead to suicide.

    Samaritans' vision

    Samaritans' vision is for a society in which:

    • Fewer people die by suicide
    • People are able to explore their feelings
    • People are able to acknowledge and respect the feelings of others


    Samaritans' values

    Samaritans' values are based on these beliefs:
    • The importance of having the opportunity to explore difficult feelings
    • That being listened to, in confidence and accepted without prejudice, can alleviate despair and suicidal feelings
    • That everyone has the right to make fundamental decisions about their own life, including the decision to die by suicide
    (from their website)
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    (Original post by ms87)
    i found this i went through a rough patch but i wasn't sucidal, they only are listen to you or take you seriously if you are sucidal, they don't seem to care otherwise even though they say they do

    The volunteers should not be there doing the job if they give the impression they don't care - all problems count however big or small.

    You have to remember that these are every-day people on the end of the phone not a properly trained counsellor. Although they've had training they are not perfect and i'm sorry to say sometimes I think there are people who really should not be allowed to deal with people in delicate emotional states.
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    (Original post by spacedonkey)
    I think you're missing the point here El Scotto!



    (from their website)

    Humanism has a time and a place where it is very helpful, Such as for people suffering from loss of their loved one who rang up the samaritans as a last ditch call for help, its the wrong thing to use with suicidal people.

    If they're ringing... they want to be stopped. Otherwise they would of got on with it already.


    Their first vision where 'fewer people die from sucide' makes me laugh.

    Peope dont 'die from suicide' it doesnt sneak up on you. It takes a lot of effort to kill yourself. Its why the last of their values makes me laugh about everyone having the right to make fundamental decisions about their own life.

    If someones depressed and thinking about killing themselves, I'd argue that they arn't even in the right state of mind to be able to make that decision about themselves in the first place.

    Theres a failiure of logic along the lines somewhere.
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    (Original post by El Scotto)

    Humanism has a time and a place where it is very helpful, Such as for people suffering from loss of their loved one who rang up the samaritans as a last ditch call for help, its the wrong thing to use with suicidal people.

    If they're ringing... they want to be stopped. Otherwise they would of got on with it already.
    I don't understand what you're saying here - that the samaritans should be shut down? :confused:
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    (Original post by spacedonkey)
    I don't understand what you're saying here - that the samaritans should be shut down? :confused:

    No i'm saying that they need to reappraise their values if they want to work towards acheiving their vision.

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    (Original post by El Scotto)

    No i'm saying that they need to reappraise their values if they want to work towards acheiving their vision.

    But reappraise their values how specifically?
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    (Original post by spacedonkey)
    But reappraise their values how specifically?

    the third one.


    That everyone has the right to make fundamental decisions about their own life, including the decision to die by suicide

    Maybe it should be that every 'rational' person... has the right.
    even finding that out, if they were 'rational' or not, involves a good talking to.

    Sometimes people can't see the wood for the trees. and most problems arnt as bad as some people might like to make out.

    For every problem that someone has, theres a million ways of coping with it, and a million other people coping with that same problem using one of the million ways.

    If we went through each and every one of those million ways... only one of the options would be suicide, which means theres 999,999 other avenues to try.
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    (Original post by El Scotto)

    Maybe it should be that every 'rational' person... has the right.
    even finding that out, if they were 'rational' or not, involves a good talking to.

    Sometimes people can't see the wood for the trees. and most problems arnt as bad as some people might like to make out.

    For every problem that someone has, theres a million ways of coping with it, and a million other people coping with that same problem using one of the million ways.

    If we went through each and every one of those million ways... only one of the options would be suicide, which means theres 999,999 other avenues to try.
    Right, so you think that the Samaritans should attempt to talk people out of suicide rather than just listen. I see what you mean, but then again as you say, if someone really wants to take their own life, then they will, and are unlikely to call the samaritans about it in the first place. I don't think their ethos is wrong - often people feel suicidal when they feel they have no other option and no outlet for the way they are feeling, so by talking about it, or even just crying down the phone to someone, their distress can be significantly relieved. I'm sure the samaritans have helped numerous people who may otherwise have committed suicide (although obviously it's impossible to actually know this for sure!), therefore I applaud them for what they do.
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    (Original post by spacedonkey)
    Right, so you think that the Samaritans should attempt to talk people out of suicide rather than just listen. I see what you mean, but then again as you say, if someone really wants to take their own life, then they will, and are unlikely to call the samaritans about it in the first place. I don't think their ethos is wrong - often people feel suicidal when they feel they have no other option and no outlet for the way they are feeling, so by talking about it, or even just crying down the phone to someone, their distress can be significantly relieved. I'm sure the samaritans have helped numerous people who may otherwise have committed suicide (although obviously it's impossible to actually know this for sure!), therefore I applaud them for what they do.

    I Just dont think suicide is the best option for anyone. Or even the final option. I totally think they should be talked out of it.

    I've heard of people calling and saying how they're gonna commit suicide, where they're gonna commit suicide and the operator has not been able to do anything about it. The operator then reads the paper and sees how and where this person has commited suicide. Samaritans ethos is to do nothing, to talk to them whilst they're going through with it. But in my opinion they should of been onto the phone to the police/whomever and got that person some one to one counselling. no matter how bad something is, it can get better... and letting someone commit suicide over something no matter how big or small... shouldnt be allowed.
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    That would be utterly horrific, if you were in the position of being the Samaritans person on the end of the phone, yes

    I wonder how the samaritans prepare volunteers for a situation like that during training? Most people's natural impulse would be to call the police, or try to do something to prevent another person taking their life.

    Anyway, I totally see where you're coming from El Scotto, thanks for explaining your POV to me
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    (Original post by spacedonkey)

    Anyway, I totally see where you're coming from El Scotto, thanks for explaining your POV to me

    heh, I always start of sounding ignorent on this, but I can generally clarify what I'm talking about
 
 
 
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