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Afraid to Ask: Talking with Children About Suicide

Afraid to Ask: Talking with Children About Suicide

About the Webinar

Asking children about suicidal thoughts is terrifying. As parents and caring adults, we don’t want to imagine children could be contemplating ending their life. Adults may struggle with anxious thoughts. Asking, “What if I say the wrong thing? What if they say no – did I just put the idea in their head? What if they say yes, what do I do? Is this my fault?”

This webinar discusses how service providers can assist parents in talking with their children about suicide. This session explores developmental considerations in how to ask about suicidal thoughts, how to be prepared for a yes answer, what role 988 can play, and what to do next.

Learning Objectives:

By the end of this webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Identify developmental considerations in talking with children about suicide
  • Discuss an approach for talking with your child about suicide
  • Identify steps for if youth say “Yes, I have thought about suicide.”
  • Describe how and when to use 988


Dr. Terresa Humphries-Wadsworth, licensed psychologist and highly experienced public speaker, is an expert in mental health promotion, suicide prevention and postvention, and behavioral health crisis care. Dr. Humphries-Wadsworth provides subject matter expertise to states and territories that are working to prevent suicide among military service members, veterans, and their families.

Continuing education credit is available.

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About the Extension Foundation

The Extension Foundation was formed in 2006 by Extension Directors and Administrators. Today, the Foundation partners with Cooperative Extension through liaison roles and a formal plan of work with the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) to increase system capacity while providing programmatic services, and helping Extension programs scale and investigate new methods and models for implementing programs. The Foundation provides professional development to Cooperative Extension professionals and offers exclusive services to its members. In 2020 and 2021, the Extension Foundation has awarded 85% of its direct funding back to the Cooperative Extension System, 100% of funds are used to support Cooperative Extension initiatives. 

This technology is supported in part by New Technologies for Agriculture Extension grant no. 2020-41595-30123 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture and membership funding. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the content are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of useat

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