The World Health Organisation estimates that over 800,000 people take their own life each year – that’s one person every 40 seconds. Up to 25 times as many again make a suicide attempt.
The Samaritans offer a safe place for you to talk any time you like, in your own way – about whatever’s getting to you. You don’t have to be suicidal. Find out what happens when you contact them.
Please don’t suffer alone.
Whatever you’re going through, call the Samaritans free any time, from any phone on 116 123.
They’re here round the clock, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If you need a response immediately, it’s best to call on the phone. This number is FREE to call. You don’t have to be suicidal to call the Samaritans.
Having suicidal thoughts is nothing to be ashamed of.
Around 1 in 5 of us has had suicidal thoughts at some point*. You may feel very lonely right now, but you are definitely not alone. Use this link for more information: https://www.stopsuicidepledge.org/feeling-suicidal/
Suicidal feelings (Information from Mind) https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/helping-someone-else/supporting-someo
What are suicidal feelings?
Suicide is the act of intentionally taking your own life.
Suicidal feelings can range from being preoccupied by abstract thoughts about ending your life, or feeling that people would be better off without you, to thinking about methods of suicide, or making clear plans to take your own life.
The type of suicidal feelings people have varies person to person, in particular in terms of:
- how intense they are — suicidal feelings are more overwhelming for some people than others. They can build up gradually or be intense from the start. They can be more or less severe at different times and may change quickly.
- how long they last — suicidal feelings sometimes pass quickly, but may still be very intense. They may come and go, or last for a long time.
If you are feeling suicidal, you might be scared or confused by these feelings. But you are not alone. Many people think about suicide at some point in their lifetime.
What does it feel like to be suicidal?
Everyone’s experience of suicidal feelings is unique to them. You might feel unable to cope with the enduring difficult feelings you are experiencing. You may feel less like you want to die and more like you cannot go on living the life you have.
These feelings may build over time or might fluctuate from moment to moment. And it’s common to not understand why you feel this way.
Here are some thoughts, feelings and experiences you may go through if you are feeling suicidal:
Getting help in an emergency
If you don’t feel you can keep yourself safe right now, seek immediate help.
- go to any hospital A&E department (sometimes known as the emergency department)
- call 999 and ask for an ambulance if you can’t get to A&E
- ask someone else to contact 999 for you or take you to A&E immediately
If you need some support right now, but don’t want to go to A&E, here are some other options for you to try:
- contact the Samaritans on freephone 116 123, they’re open 24 hours and are there to listen
- contact your GP for an emergency appointment or the out of hours team
- call NHS 111 (England) or NHS Direct 0845 46 47 (Wales)
- contact your local crisis team
- click the yellow ‘I need urgent help’ button at the top of this screen for more options
- see our page on helping yourself cope right now, and on crisis services.
Worried about someone else? See our pages on supporting someone else with suicidal feelings.
How you might think or feel
- hopeless, like there is no point in living
- tearful and overwhelmed by negative thoughts
- unbearable pain that you can’t imagine ending
- useless, unwanted or unneeded by others
- desperate, as if you have no other choice
- like everyone would be better off without you
- cut off from your body or physically numb
How long will I feel suicidal?
Suicidal feelings can be overwhelming. How long these feelings last differs for everyone.
It is common to feel as if you’ll never be happy or hopeful again. But with support and self-help, the majority of people who have felt suicidal go on to live fulfilling lives. The earlier you let someone know how you’re feeling, the quicker you’ll be able to get support to overcome these feelings. However, it can feel difficult to open up to people.
You may want others to understand what you’re going through, but you might feel:
- unable to tell someone
- unsure of who to tell
- concerned that they won’t understand
- fearful of being judged
- worried you’ll upset them
If this is the case, you might find it helpful to show our pages on supporting someone else with suicidal feelings to someone you trust. This can be a good way of starting the conversation and can give them suggestions of how they can help you.
Can you tell if someone feels suicidal?
Many people find it very hard to talk about suicidal feelings — this can be because they are worried about how others will react or because they cannot find the words. They might hide how they are feeling and convince friends or family that they are coping.
The NHS Choices website has a list of warning signs that you could notice, but there might not be any signs or you might not be able to tell. Correctly interpreting how someone else is feeling can be difficult so it’s very important not to blame yourself if you aren’t able to spot the signs that someone is feeling suicidal.
STOP Suicide is an award-winning suicide prevention campaign that seeks to empower communities and individuals across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to help stop suicides by being alert to the warning signs, asking directly about suicide and helping those who are feeling suicidal to stay safe.
This campaign started life as an NHS England-funded pilot and is now continuing via other funding streams. It is being led by the charities Mind in Cambridgeshire, Peterborough & Fenland Mind and Lifecraft, supported by local NHS and Public Health teams.
It will involve general awareness raising about suicide, specialist training for non-mental health professionals working / volunteering within our communities and a public campaign to encourage sign up to the STOP Suicide Pledge for organisations and individuals.
Suicide is everybody’s business. Please work with us to make Cambridgeshire and Peterborough a suicide-safer community.