Yes, it’s wrong to feel the way you do. Your thinking is skewed. Even the most rigorously trained and most qualified therapists can’t help everyone. It’s unrealistic to believe that you could treat your mentally ill and suicidal brother. To believe that you “should” be able to help your brother without any training is unrealistic and simply wrong. Perhaps it’s an idea you picked up from your parents who expected you, at 11 years of age, to know how to help your brother. You couldn’t help him then and you can’t help him now and that would be true for anyone without professional training.
Treating suicidal individuals is extremely complicated. Only highly trained professionals should attempt to work with individuals who are suicidal.
You should encourage your brother to seek treatment. He may or may not take your advice. Hopefully he will but whether he does or not has nothing to do with you. His talking about ending his life is not because he doesn’t love you. It’s because he is unhappy and suffering or perhaps because he is mentally ill or misguided in life. It has nothing to do with you. You do not have that kind of power over people. No one does.
To have to watch someone you love needlessly suffer with treatable mental health problems is one of the most difficult situations in life to tolerate. For that reason, you would benefit from counseling. You are the ideal candidate. Maybe, if you try counseling, your brother might follow in your footsteps. Maybe not. That decision is up to him. Thank you for your question. Good luck and please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle