Two Books in One
A guide for family members, friends, and health professionals
Suicide Risk in the Bay Area: A Guide for Families, Physicians, Therapists, and Other Professionals combines a suicide prevention resource directory, containing over 300 local resources, with a step-by-step guide on how to assess, manage, and talk about suicide risk.
Throughout the book, the message is clear: Talk About It. The Introduction offers lessons from Dr. Merritt’s psychiatric practice, followed by more than fifty educational modules providing vignettes, tips and checklists to help readers to talk about suicide risk effectively and compassionately. At the same time, the directory collects hotlines, mobile crisis units, suicide prevention trainings, and other crucial resources from the four major regions of the Bay Area.
For health professionals
In the book’s Foreword, Renée Binder, M.D., President of the American Psychiatric Association, counsels all doctors and therapists to have a copy on hand in their daily clinical work. In her words, Suicide Risk in the Bay Area “deserves to be on the desk of every mental health professional who lives and works in the Bay Area.” See below for more feedback from experts.
For family members & friends
Most unique of all, Suicide Risk in the Bay Area guides family members and friends to take out time, think and feel deeply, and then to distill the essence of what you wish to communicate on paper. In the Introduction, Dr. Merritt tells the story of a 16 year-old girl, Nancy, and her parents, who followed the method he outlines in the book. After preparing, they spoke from their hearts with Nancy about suicide risk. They spoke of their love for her, the pain and grief they would experience if she was gone, and the concrete steps they would take together to prioritize her health and well-being. In this loving conversation, the mother, father, and Nancy all came to tears. They connected. “It was wonderful for all of us,” the father shared afterwards.
Book Review in the Palo Alto Weekly
From leaders in the field
“A valuable and innovative tool for doctors, therapists, and parents, Suicide Risk in the Bay Area deserves to be recognized and replicated nationwide.”
—Alan F. Schatzberg, M.D., Stanford, Past President, American Psychiatric Association
“Two books in one, Suicide Risk is an excellent primer on suicide risk assessment and management and a wealth of resources at your fingertips to readily guide you.”
—Eve R. Meyer, Executive Director, San Francisco Suicide Prevention
“Suicide Risk in the Bay Area is critical reading for professionals, teachers, and parents. It’s possible to prevent suicide, and this book is an invaluable guide.”
—David Sheff, author of Beautiful Boy and Clean