2nd Edition

Half in Love with Death Managing the Chronically Suicidal Patient

By Joel Paris Copyright 2024
    196 Pages
    by Routledge

    196 Pages
    by Routledge

    The second edition of Half in Love with Death gives therapists new tools to help manage chronically suicidal patients. Clinicians will learn how to tolerate suicidality, understand the inner world of patients, avoid repeated hospitalizations, and focus on life situations that maintain suicidal ideas and behaviors. This new edition includes a number of major updates and a new chapter on the epidemiology of suicidality.

    Each chapter develops a theoretical perspective based on empirical data, and many are illustrated by clinical examples. Topics addressed throughout the text include:

    • Distinctions among various types of suicidality
    • The inner world of the chronically suicidal patient, with a particular focus on pain, emptiness, and hopelessness
    • The relationship between chronic suicidality and personality disorders, especially the category of borderline personality
    • The effectiveness of psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy for chronically suicidal patients
    • The risks of litigation in managing this patient population

    This is a crucially important resource for clinicians who treat chronically suicidal patients, one that provides enlightened and evidence-based guidelines.

    Preface. Introduction. Chapter 1 Suicidality and Suicide. Chapter 2 Epidemiological and Social Perspectives. Chapter 3 Myths of Suicide Prevention. Chapter 4 The Inner World of the Chronically Suicidal Patient. Chapter 5 Suicidality, Development, and the Life Course. Chapter 6 Chronic Suicidality and Personality Disorders. Chapter 7 Psychotherapy Research and Chronic Suicidality. Chapter 8 Pharmacotherapy and Chronic Suicidality. Chapter 9 Tolerating Chronic Suicidality. Chapter 10 Managing Chronic Suicidality. Chapter 11 Suicidality and Litigation. Chapter 12 Guidelines for Therapists. References. Index.


    Joel Paris was born in New York City, but has spent most of his life in Canada. He obtained an MD from McGill University, where he also trained in psychiatry. Dr. Paris has served as department chair and is now an emeritus professor of psychiatry. He is a former editor-in-chief of the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry. His main clinical and research interest is in borderline personality disorder, about which he has written over 200 research papers and 25 books. Dr. Paris heads personality disorder clinics at two hospitals in the McGill network.

    "Imagine a new disease, sudden and violent in manifestation, with no accepted treatment, and sometimes ending in death. To write about something like this requires care, sensitivity, and courage. We have the disease—it is now called suicidality—and Joel Paris in this new edition is its worthy chronicler. He shirks nothing, embraces all the evidence, and his writing is a joy to read." 

    Peter Tyrer, professor of psychiatry, Imperial College, London, UK

    "Chronic suicidal ideation is a challenging and often misunderstood problem. This authoritative text by a leading expert provides the understanding needed for effective management. The author’s pragmatic approach makes this book an invaluable resource for clinicians, those suffering from the condition, and those seeking to support them."

    W. John Livesley, professor emeritus of psychiatry, University of British Columbia