I've had close calls with suicide myself and am recovering from depression. I feel a calling for working suicide hotlines. I have contributed in suicide forums and successfully talked someone down from suicide once and when the trained moderator visited the transcript said I did very well for someone who isnt trained. However I felt extremely drained and triggred and havent been back to that site since. Should I consider volunteering for such work?
if you're recovering from depression (which i read as struggling with depression but improving), i don't think you should do it just yet.
the real question to ask yourself here is: what about the people you can't help? are you mentally strong enough to cope with someone coming to you for help, and still ending themselves? it takes serious mental fortitude to be able to handle that.
you should be prepared for the worst going into that kind of thing. it's a noble cause; but in reality you might find it to be much uglier than you anticipated.
My gf worked for what I guess is the UK equivalent for many years. She started off when she was young and idealistic, I don't know what your situation is like, but she was quite quickly taught that in her role, procedure and professionalism was very important and overruled self disclosure, personal experience and the ability to relate too much was actually unhelpful compared to the ability to detach and provide a service. I mean, I can't be like "I get you bro, man, I've been there, let me gas about myself and my situation a while".
It isn't effective and is kind of crass to do so y'know? Especially if you are like, 19 and depressed and some dude wants to kill himself because he is 51 and his whole life is falling to pieces after his wife left him and took everything and he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer and he is unable to emotionally connect to others or express himself because of growing up in a repressive childhood which was normal for his generation and has been masking it for years with the trappings of a normative identity which is now gone good luck with that idk lol.
Abso fucking loutely not
Working this close to suicide will just depress you and trigger bad memories/anxiety
You literally could not pick a worse field
If you want to work in mental health, volunteer in a mental health help charity, but don't focus it around suicide. You'll ruin yourself