Along the lines of fishing for compliments and threatening to die...(Warning: This is something that is only funny if you have been around PA people enough to have some black humor about it.)
I had a work friend who was always saying "No one loves me. No one would miss me if I killed myself." Of course we would reassure him that we loved him and would miss him very much. And it was things like, "I made berry cobbler, it's no good. Here, try some and tell me if I should kill myself." or "I'm just have no fashion sense. I should kill myself." or "I'm no good at my job, I wonder if the boss would be happy if I killed myself." It also turned into begging for favors. "No one will ever do X for me. I might as well kill myself."
So we were always complimenting him on his "talents" covering up for his terrible work and offering to give him rides, etc. Because we figured if we could just support him through his "rough patch" he would be fine, right?
After six months of knowing him, this got very, very old. Like when his girlfriend broke up with him and he left a voicemail on my (work) answering machine saying, "I need to talk to someone or I'm going to kill myself" and of course since he left it at 6:00 at night I didn't get it until the next day. He didn't show up for work the next day. Oh, and when he came in two days later, he wanted to see who was "sad." Of course the boss didn't want to fire him because she didn't want his death on her hands. He was ticked off at me because I called the cops and they did a welfare check at his house.
So, as I was growing my spine. I decided to change the topic, every time he brought it up. If he confronted me I'd say, "Well you're still alive." and move on.
Then another girlfriend broke up with him (let's see...how many loves of his life did he lose in a year?) He went over to her house and threatened to kill himself in front of her if she didn't stay with him. Of course she called the cops and guess what? In some places that is legally considered domestic violence. So he spent the night in jail. The girl did press charges, he was found mentally incompetent and he was held for inpatient treatment. I know that sounds terrible, but this was really the best thing for him.
He called up a co-worker when in jail asking for bail and to vouch for his sanity. The co-worker said that there was no way he could spring for bail. Afterwards co-worker was telling us, "My regret about this is that I was talking to him when all potential weapons had been removed. I could have told him the truth about his berry cobbler and faux beatnik hats not worried about driving him to suicide!"