We list this first because it may be the most important thing you read here and may someday save your life or the life of a loved one.
When someone is threatening or trying to hurt themselves or others, that is not a time to go it alone. You must contact your local emergency services immediately.
There is nothing to be gained - and much to lose - from trying to negotiate, argue or bargain with a person who is behaving in a verbally or physically violent or threatening way. That is not the time for words, it is the time to get out of the way and let the professionals do their job.
Even if you do not believe they will go through with it, you must remove yourself and any children from the situation and get emergency services involved.
See our page on Emergency Information for more details