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15 Common Causes Of Suicide: Why Do People Kill Themselves?

Suicide is defined as the act of intentionally causing one’s own death. There are many factors that play a role in influencing whether someone decides to commit suicide. Nearly everyone experiences suicidal thoughts at one point or another throughout their existence. Everyone deals with tough times, but some people have been dealt a tougher hand when it comes to life circumstances, past trauma, mental and/or physical illness, social standing, and ability to cope with depressive emotions.

People are most driven to suicide when they view their current situation as being completely hopeless and feel as if they have no way to change things for the better. Common causes of suicide include: depression, drug abuse, financial problems, as well as difficulties with relationships. Although there are crisis hotlines that have been developed to help people feeling suicidal, the jury is out as to whether they even help.

Some ideas for preventing suicide include things like: banning firearms, developing better treatment for mental illness, and economic improvement. Most people that commit suicide do so because they are in some sort of pain and cannot seem to find a way out. Much work still needs to be done on coming up with more effective ways to help individuals that struggle with suicidal thinking as up to 1,000,000 people die every year from suicide. Listed below are some of the most common causes of suicide throughout the world.

15 Common Causes of Suicide: A List of Possibilities

Listed below are some common causes of suicide and a brief explanation regarding why it may lead a person to become suicidal. The most common cause of suicide is untreated depression, as 90% of individuals who commit suicide are depressed. However, there are other causes beyond the realm of mental illness that should be discussed including: trauma, drug addiction, existential crises, chronic pain, and terminal illnesses.

1. Mental illness

Among the most common causes of suicide is that of mental illness. Although there are a variety of treatment options for people with mental illnesses, they are far from perfect. Most people end up trying a variety of psychiatric drugs and/or talk therapies. After years of trying various medications (and cocktails), going through medication withdrawals, and experimenting with therapies, some people are stuck in a constant state of mental pain and despair.

  • Anxiety: Having generalized anxiety, social phobia, panic attacks, or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) can drive a person crazy. Some forms of anxiety make it extremely difficult to maintain friendships, finish school, or hold down a steady job. The combination of loneliness and fear can lead a person to contemplate suicide.
  • Bipolar disorder: There are a couple of subtypes of Bipolar disorder, but essentially it involves fluctuations in mood from states of severe depression to elevations in mood such as mania and hypomania. These mood fluctuations can make it difficult for people with this disorder to maintain relationships and a balanced life. Additionally the depression can lead a person to feel suicidal.
  • Depression: Major depression is a leading cause of suicide throughout the world. People that do not treat their depressive symptoms have a greater risk for following through with suicide. Individuals with major depression are typically genetically wired in a way that makes it difficult to feel pleasure and happiness in life. 90% of people who commit suicide suffer from untreated depression.
  • Schizophrenia: This is a highly severe mental illness with an array of symptoms including severe depression, hallucinations, and cognitive impairment. Having this illness makes it difficult to function in life and can serve as a major challenge due to the fact that most medications to treat this illness carry severe side effects. Anywhere from 20% to 40% of people with this illness attempt suicide.

2. Traumatic Experience

Any type of traumatic experience can lead a person to feeling helpless, guilty, and/or ashamed. If you were victim of physical abuse, sexual abuse, and/or dealt with trauma in war, you are much more likely to end up with post-traumatic stress disorder. This disorder and the feelings associated with traumatic experiences can lead a person to become suicidal.

PTSD: Many people with PTSD or “Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder” develops after a person is faced with a traumatic experience such as warfare, being seriously injured, or assaulted. The illness is characterized by flashbacks and numbing or blockage of memories surrounding the traumatic experience. People with this illness often live in a state of intense, and sometimes debilitating anxiety and/or fear that can interfere with leading a normal life. When people feel helpless about their situation and permanently traumatized, they may turn to suicide.

  • Physical abuse: People who are victim to physical abuse either growing up or in a relationship can be traumatized. They may harbor feelings of guilt and shame that stay trapped inside for years. When someone is abused it may go unrecognized and unreported for an extended period of time. A person who is being physically abused may view suicide as the only way in which they can escape their situation.
  • Sexual abuse: Any form of sexual abuse can lead a person to feeling depressed and suicidal. In cases of molestation and rape, a person is forced to perform sexual acts against their will. This can result in significant psychological trauma caused to the victim. When unreported or not addressed, this trauma can make a person feel highly suicidal.
  • War: Being involved in a war can lead a person to see death, horrendous injuries, and feel fearful for their own life. This intense anxiety and paranoia over whether the soldier will stay alive coupled with seeing others die and injured can lead to trauma. People see things in war that make them physically sick and in many cases, they have a tough time mentally healing. The lack of support for veterans and not understanding their psychological diagnosis can sometimes result in suicide.

3. Bullying

Most people experience bullying to some degree while growing up and going through school – it’s an inevitable part of life. Bullying can have a profound effect on the way people think and how they feel. Most people that are bullied end up feeling extremely depressed, worthless, and hopeless to change their situation.

Unfortunately in many cases, bullying goes completely unrecognized until the victim can’t take it anymore and sees suicide as the only way to escape the pain that they are experiencing. Some kids view bullying others as a way to fit in and/or prove themselves in regards to social hierarchy. Kids that get bullied are often viewed as being either physically weak and/or socially weak to not come up with witty responses.

Additionally, now there is a phenomenon called “cyber bullying” in which people fall victim to being bullied online. This happens on social media sites, comments sections of websites, and various blogs that aim to ruin people’s reputations and make people feel ashamed. When a person is bullied online and/or has privacy exposed online, they may view a ruined reputation as the end of the world and feel helpless to change their situation – which could lead to suicide.

4. Personality Disorders

Personality disorders can be closely related to mental illness, but are considered a set of traits that make it difficult to function within society. People with a personality disorder may have trouble maintaining relationships, holding down a steady job, and/or coping with life. For example, someone with dependent personality disorder may be too afraid to leave an abusive relationship. This “dependency” may lead the person with this disorder to consider suicide as an escape from their circumstances.

On the same token, avoidant personality disorder can lead individuals to avoid social contact because they are afraid they will be rejected or won’t fit in. This can result in feelings of isolation and a person thinking that they will never have any friends. An individual with a personality disorder may feel as if there is no hope for escaping the problems caused by their personality and may consider suicide.

The bottom line is that if you have a personality disorder, you are at increased risk of suicide. The personality disorder that is most associated with increased suicide risk is that of borderline personality disorder (BPD). This disorder is characterized by impulsive behavior, difficulty regulating emotions, and instability in relationships.

5. Drug Addiction / Substance Abuse

People that are addicted to drugs and/or abuse drugs or alcohol on a consistent basis are more likely to become depressed. Many people use drugs to escape painful feelings of depression and hopelessness of their current life situation. Being addicted to drugs or alcohol may provide some short-term relief from the pain that they feel, but over the long term, drug use tends to alter brain functioning and neurotransmitters.

Eventually a person will build up such a high tolerance to whatever drug they are addicted to, that they won’t experience anymore lift in mood that they got when they first started using. In many cases, substance abuse can temporarily change the way we think by altering neurotransmitter levels and overall brain function.

If you have an addiction, it could escalate to feelings of deep depression. You may feel helpless to overcome whatever addiction you face and some people see suicide as an only way out of the addiction trap.

6. Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are defined as a series of dysfunctional eating patterns that satisfy the person in ways other than nutrition. Many eating disorders are thought to be caused by body image problems, low self-esteem, and other mental health issues. It is thought that eating disorders are a way a person attempts to cope with unrelated issues such as: abuse, troublesome emotions, communication problems, or an identity crisis.

By eating in a certain way it allows the person to feel a sense of control over their life and situation.  A common disorder is that of anorexia, which is the refusal to eat enough food to maintain a healthy body weight. Others include: bulimia, compulsive overeating, and purging disorder. All of these disorders tend to affect both physical and mental health negatively.

A person dealing with an eating disorder may constantly feel suicidal as a result of a nutrient-deficient diet.  Poor diets can lead a person to feel depression and constant negative emotions.  Only when the diet is corrected can a person experience improvements in mental health and pain associated with their situation.  Additionally in cases of eating disorders, other underlying issues usually need to be addressed in therapy before progress can be made.

7. Unemployment

Being unemployed can lead to feelings of isolation and make your life feel as if it is void of purpose. With a poor economy, many people lose their jobs and look for new work, but since the competition is fierce, landing a new job can be difficult. In many cases being unemployed not only makes people feel as if they have no purpose in life, it can lead to depression over lack of an income as well.

Individuals who are unemployed aren’t earning any money and may get especially stressed out when it comes time to pay bills. Being unable to earn money and provide for yourself and/or a family can result in significant depression and anxiety. In addition to unemployment, hating your current job can also lead to suicidal thoughts and possibly actions if you feel as if there is no alternative option.

Employment provides most people with a sense of purpose and belonging to a specific group or company.  If you are unemployed you may find yourself socially isolated and lacking purpose and structure in your day.  Being employed helps individuals stay busy and can actually take their mind off of

8. Social Isolation / Loneliness

Being socially isolated from society can take a toll on mental health and lead a person to become depressed and consider suicide. Socializing and interacting with other people is a basic human need. If social needs are not met, a person can start to feel lonely which leads to depression and possibly suicidal thoughts. Loneliness is defined as a general feeling of sadness as a result of being alone or feeling disconnected from others.

Isolation is being separated from others in your environment. Someone can become isolated based on circumstances (i.e. employment) or as a result of personal decisions. Various reasons that a person could feel lonely or isolated include: living alone, death of a close friend or family member, poor physical health, mental illness, being introverted, fear of rejection, and/or retirement.

Living isolated from others can lead to an array of problems including mental health conditions, low energy, substance abuse, negative feelings, and/or sleep problems. If the loneliness and/or social isolation is not addressed, it may lead someone to consider suicide as an escape from their situation.

9. Relationship problems

Many people struggle with relationships including: being in abusive relationships, not feeling appreciated, and/or going through break-ups. There are many different types of relationships that a person could struggle with. Some people may have difficulties making friends and maintaining a close group for socialization. Others may struggle with staying in abusive relationships just so that they can avoid feeling isolated and lonely.

The need for human belonging is so strong that some people are willing to join gangs and/or humiliate themselves just to be in a relationship with another person. As far as romantic relationships are concerned, the act of a break-up can trigger intense feelings of depression, anxiety, guilt and panic – leading a person to deal with a lot of emotional pain. Often times in the news we read about people committing suicide as the result of a break-up with a significant other.

Among individuals that are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered, the leading cause of suicide isn’t family rejection, it’s relationship troubles. Most research suggests that these individuals deal with significantly more relationship stress than those who are heterosexual.

10. Genetics / Family History

A lot of suicide risk has to do with genetics and family history. Those who are from a family in which suicide is common are more likely to commit suicide themselves. Additionally if a mental illness is inherited such as major depression, this can further increase risk of suicide. Family, twin, and adoption studies have all established genetic links to suicidal behavior.

Various traits including: aggression, borderline personality disorder, cognitive inflexibility, and stress sensitivity are all linked to influencing suicidal behavior. If you inherit any of these traits, they could put you at an increased risk of suicide. Although there is a genetic link, it is not certain as to what degree this affects someone’s decision to follow through with the act of suicide.

Additionally epigenetics or the activation or deactivation of genes based on environmental factors is thought to play a role. In other words, your circumstances, the people you hang out with, where you live, etc. could all influence your genetic expression and thus be partially influential in determining whether a person becomes suicidal.

11. Philosophical Desire / Existential Crisis

When life seems void of meaning, people tend to question why they are even living and/or the entire purpose of their existence. This is often referred to as an “existential crisis” and can be difficult to overcome because people dealing with this issue often think themselves in circles of logic as to why there is no point to life. In many cases, people facing an existential crisis consider suicide because they feel as if their entire existence is void of purpose.

This crisis can result from major depression, trauma, loneliness, seeking meaning and/or general dissatisfaction with life. Some reports suggest that this crisis may affect individuals with above-average levels of intelligence. Facing an existential crisis can be difficult and can take awhile to get over. Usually the individual needs to make some sort of changes in life for their existential outlook to change.

I personally have faced this crisis and would spend entire days dwelling on the fact that life is pointless and that eventually I’m going to face either: an afterlife or nothingness when I die. This crisis can last years and result in highly suicidal feelings if not addressed in some way.

12. Terminal Illness

Many people with terminal illnesses that have no hope of improving their situation based on current science and medicine may become depressed. This depression is usually a result of feeling powerless to one’s condition. People with terminal illnesses aren’t able to treat or make any sort of improvement towards getting better. In many cases they are simply living and being controlled by the impairments that their illness causes.

Terminal illnesses such as various types of cancer usually leave a person frustrated, shocked and feeling hopeless. Other terminal illnesses end up causing physical or other handicaps and take a serious toll on a person’s energy levels, willpower, and ability to partake in daily functions. Many elderly individuals who are terminally ill have fought for euthanasia rights and/or traveled to other countries where it has been legalized.

13. Chronic Pain

If you have chronic pain, it means that you have had daily pain that has persisted for between three and six months. This pain often impairs your ability to function throughout the day and can affect mobility, the ability to perform certain tasks, and even a person’s mental health. Although pain levels differ among chronic pain sufferers, one thing that they all have in common is an inability to escape the daily discomfort associated with their pain.

They may take painkillers just to make it through the day, but these painkillers are not considered a “cure,” and many people find them relatively ineffective once they build up a tolerance. There aren’t many promising treatment options for people that have chronic pain other than various forms of therapy and medication. Dealing with pain on a daily basis can drive some people into depression, and in some cases, suicide.

14. Financial Problems

People who are struggling financially sometimes see no end in sight to their debt and bills. The financial stress can take a major toll on a person’s mental health. There have been cases of even millionaires committing suicide because they spent all of their money or had to file for bankruptcy. In a difficult economy, unemployment is linked to increased financial stress, but even if you are employed, you may still have financial problems.

Those who have accumulated a serious amount of debt as a result of an unforeseen emergency, excessive shopping, and/or medical bills may panic and feel suicidal when they can’t pay their bills. The stress of having a poor credit score and constant phone calls from bill collectors may make some people feel ashamed and hopeless to change their financial situation.

Although most people in financial troubles eventually end up working their way out of debt, some people are afraid to deal with this situation. In the event that a person becomes embarrassed about their finances and feels depressed about their debt, they may consider suicide as a way to escape this situation.

15. Prescription Drugs

The side effects of various prescription drugs such as antidepressants can result in suicidal ideation. In other words, these drugs affect levels of neurotransmitters that can sometimes put a person at increased risk for suicide. Some antidepressants actually end up making people significantly more depressed because they are targeting neurotransmitter levels, when the original cause of depression wasn’t a result of a chemical imbalance.  (Read the article, “Can antidepressants cause suicidality?” for more information).

Although many people respond well to SSRI’s that prevent the reuptake of serotonin, thereby increasing serotonin levels in the brain, others have poor reactions. There are black box warnings on most antidepressants stating that they may cause an increase in suicidal thinking. In addition to feeling suicidal while on antidepressants, many people end up with a chemical imbalance upon withdrawal from these drugs.  It is also disputed as to whether dopamine vs. serotonin is more important or whether low norepinephrine causes depression.

The chemical imbalance is usually caused by changes in neurotransmitter levels and functioning as a result of taking an antidepressant. In many cases serotonin levels are abnormally low when a person withdraws from an SSRI, leaving the person to feel even more depressed and suicidal than they originally were. It takes the brain awhile to recover after withdrawal and reestablish normal serotonin levels.  Further recommended reading: Do antidepressants cause a chemical imbalance?

Other psychiatric drugs that can lead a person to feel suicidal include: antipsychotics and benzodiazepines. It is always important to monitor sudden changes in mood while taking a psychiatric drug so that suicide can be prevented. Most people are lead to believe that psychiatric drugs will always work to prevent suicide, when in reality if someone has a bad reaction, they can actually trigger these thoughts.

Why do some people kill themselves in these situations?

Feeling trapped and unable to cope with a particular situation in life tends to lead people to consider suicide. Whether a person has been dealing with a mental illness, faced trauma, or they have been bullied at school, it is the pain and continuous suffering from these experiences that becomes overwhelming. When pain exceeds our abilities to cope, we feel hopeless to change and feel suicidal.

It is important to recognize that pain is an inevitable part of life, everyone deals with pain to a certain extent. Escaping the everyday pain and suffering associated with life is impossible. So what can be done if you are suicidal? Either find a way to reduce the amount of pain you are experiencing and/or increase your coping resources.

If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal, be sure to seek professional help. The article I wrote called “I Want To Die” may provide you with some useful suggestions as to where you can get help for yourself if you feel hopeless. In many cases, the pain leading a person to feel suicidal can be overcome and reduced to the point where an individual is able to find pleasure and purpose in life again.

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{ 251 comments… add one }
  • Greg June 19, 2018, 1:56 am

    It’s true all these life circumstances do contribute to suicides, but they don’t explain why some do and some don’t take their lives. I’m also struck by the numbers of successful suicides that occur without others recognizing any of these 15 markers were present, except via hindsight.

    Having had a daughter suicide, I’ve had to delve into a world that previously seemed remote. These markers lead logically to a risk checklist approach. Which makes some sense if you have some forewarning. However increasingly I’m hearing that we’re missing the mark with this logic.

    There’s some great resources around now about how to tune into others suffering with a more selective and deeper enquiry that makes them “feel felt” to quote Mark Goulston. I only wish I’d read more widely, earlier.

    • Tim July 13, 2018, 5:36 pm

      @Greg. Heartfelt sympathies, I cannot imagine w two teen boys. I agree with a lot of your thought.

      As a medic for 20 years, I recall a thirteen year-old sitting on the steps to the platform at the Springfield Mall (1990). I recall the smells, the .38 and the fact that I couldn’t wrap my young head completely around why. No car crash, old age, OD or murder. No EKG, past pronouncing for paperwork. No IVs, ETtubes, lines, meds – just dead.

      Why? Young… All the psychiatrists and philosophers can do their thing. I won’t understand, nor will countless parents, kids affected by this darkness. Again, heartfelt sympathies.

      • Greg August 13, 2018, 9:31 pm

        Thanks for your kind thoughts, Tim. That must have been so disturbing for you. I once did counseling as a job (keen, but green) and I remember talking with a middle-aged man who worked as a train driver.

        He was anxious and depressed and it was largely, as far as I could tell, a consequence of having people suicide when he was the driver. More than once. I wish I knew then what I now know. It’s very hard to appreciate the impact of a suicide until you are involved personally somehow. All the best, G.

  • Brette May 28, 2018, 10:25 pm

    Anytime anyone reaches out to you, don’t ignore their e-mails or phone calls. Don’t postpone your response. Don’t tell yourself you’re too busy. That someone may really need validation and support even though their life seems normal on the outside.

  • Jerry J nelson May 1, 2018, 4:32 pm

    I have been divorced for over 4 years. I have major depressive disorder and severe anxiety which has made it difficult to keep jobs, think properly, pay bills etc. My ex won’t let me see my kids because I am having suicidal thoughts. I am to the point where I just want to give up and die.

    I live with my parents who have been good to me, but I feel like such a failure and that my life will never get better. I am considering suicide. I can’t take the pain of mental illness any longer. It drains every bit of Energy I have in me. I can’t suffer like this anymore.

    • Emily Shaver May 2, 2018, 3:43 am

      Jerry, First I want to say I am so sorry about your situation and the pain you must feel right now. That being said, the contemplation between life and death is not the answer to these many heart breaks. Your value, and worth is powerful. You hold power within your children, your previous wife, and each thought within your mind.

      This power is something that should be held high, and at a valuable position. Your children’s eyes see their powerful father, their protector, their shoulder to lean on, that open ear, that go to laugh… those little eyes continuously see everything you truly are – their powerful Father.

      That power you hold within those little hearts, let that give you determination. Allow it to create a sense of motivation… Motivation to be present. Present in your own life and present in theirs. Be present Jerry, you hold a great power in this world.

    • Trish May 3, 2018, 1:45 am

      I can relate. Divorce, kid, hopeless, no solution as far as I can tell that will have a favorable uplifting end result. So, the planning begins again. I’ve planned many times throughout my life.

      Even as a young child, going home to the stars to creator to the silence seemed much more appealing than sticking around. Never follow through tho. I think, I plan then I move on until it haunts me again.

      I’m here because, well… I wonder if I might. But I also wonder if my experience and turmoil and trauma all filled a ‘tool box’ equipped with ways to help others. Maybe that’s because I remove myself from being worthy of helping. Like self sacrifice or something.

      I don’t know. But you’re not alone. I’m not alone. I don’t know you but I hope you find yourself wanting to live because of some unseen drive to greatness. I’m sure you have some great qualities that could be of use to someone else.

      Maybe that’s what I’m going to try. Distract my thoughts by helping others… lame, if I didn’t have kids maybe I’d be long gone. But I do and I don’t want them to choose this as an out because it was familiar to them because I did. Eh, useless.

      Idk man – just want to send you some divine love… Strength & Luck.

    • Doug May 5, 2018, 8:11 pm

      In some states being on the birth certificate is all you need to go see your kids at the bus stop or wherever, just to say “Hi”. Even 5 minutes can brighten your day…and theirs.
      https://www.bellonlawgroup.com/unmarried-parents-rights.html
      If you are under 40, you still have a lot of time on your side to turn things around.

    • Allison Robbins May 6, 2018, 5:16 pm

      If you would have a chance to get to see your kids by taking the matter to court/back to court I think it would be worth a shot. Not being involved in their lives must be a huge source of suffering and given the chance to see them sometimes would rekindle that loving relationship and give you a source of joy as well.

      Also what field do you work in? If it’s not something you are passionate about – that can make every day even more draining than it already is with mental illness.

  • Mya Jones April 24, 2018, 2:52 am

    I recently loss my best friend to suicide. It was so painful for me to accept that fact that he’s gone. One of the hardest things I’ve had to deal with. The most hurtful part to me is that he thought no one cared about him but yet had so much love.

    Too bad he can’t see that because he’s gone now. What ever you may be going through you should always find something in life that will keep you going whether it’s your kids, job, friends, pets, or just your smile that brightens someone’s day, you just never know.

    Just because your world is dark it doesn’t mean that someone isn’t looking up to you. Please, please, please search for your purpose of being on this Earth. Jesus is the reason and the best person to talk to. If you don’t know him simply say this prayer: Lord Jesus, come into my life, forgive me of my sins, I’ll make you my Lord and savior.

    It’s just that simple. Please don’t give up people – keep pushing because someone in this world is looking up to you!

  • Doug April 23, 2018, 9:53 pm

    USE YOUR BENEFITS!!!! If you are employed you need to use the benefits they offer. Use FMLA, short term/long term disability, 401k loans/withdrawals. Use The ADA Amendments Act of 2008 which provides more protection/benefits for mental health.

    Once you have exhausted all avenues, then I guess it’s up to fate or destiny. FMLA/short term disability is sooooo easy to get on. Make sure your psych has good experience in this area.

  • bobololita April 22, 2018, 10:08 pm

    My brother in law committed suicide on the 1st of April. This was the last thing I could ever think. He was a brilliant young man, a perfect soul. He left us with so many unanswered questions and how we wished he had shown a little sign that he would do this.

    We could run for help and do anything for him so he could start over. How I wish, how we all wish – we could go back in time and change what he did.

  • Matt April 20, 2018, 7:29 am

    I live with a bunch on this list. Chronic pain due to a neurological condition, major depression, PTSD from working in EMS, relationships, isolation. Full on self hate. Everyday I think about it. Medication helps but just kind of fuzzes the thoughts I guess.

    Losing my mother last year was the worst for me. Now I am stuck living with my father to help him out. Just always one thing after the other. Finding my way through the dark wondering if today will be the day I snap and do it.

    • Doug April 28, 2018, 7:25 pm

      How is your financial situation? Have you spoken to your Psych about Vocational Rehab? I don’t know your age or your father’s age, but have you looked into any benefits available through Social Security if you are supporting your father?

  • Jim April 5, 2018, 10:32 pm

    Yeah, I’m a middle aged man. I have Avoidant Personality Disorder and major depression. No friends for well over a decade. Nice family but they don’t really like having me around. Can’t blame really blame them. I don’t bring much to the table.

    No family, no wife, no kids – I’m completely detached. I have a job but I expect I’ll lose it anytime. No confidence whatsoever. I don’t believe there’s a point to life and I agree that most people are suicidal at times to a greater or lesser extent. Why wouldn’t they be? Life is pretty hard at times.

    But you know what? I have my health for the most part. And even though I think it’s all pointless and I’m depressed as hell, I’m just curious enough about life and society and traveling the world to stick around for a while. When my health starts to go, I’ll end it in a heartbeat and not feel a bit sad or guilty about it.

    • Doug April 23, 2018, 9:44 pm

      If you have money, then I would say you have the right attitude. When you have nothing to lose, you are now the boss. Are they going to destroy your life by firing you when you already have nothing to lose?

      Use all your benefits – FMLA, short term disability, 401k withdrawal/loans. Go travel and say F’-you cause I wasn’t really planning on being here much longer anyways.

  • Abby March 25, 2018, 5:42 am

    I think mine is 9. Relationship problem with my dad. He’s so controlling and we’re all afraid of his temper. I get so angry when he’s being so unreasonable with me and getting angry with me. But I especially hate it when he starts attacking my mother verbally.

    I’m 29 but it feels like I haven’t lived. I can’t do what other people my age do. I can’t even make a big decision without consulting him cause he gets angry if I do. What good is life you can’t even live it the way you want to. What good is life when you feel imprisoned?

    • Greg June 11, 2018, 11:27 pm

      It can be difficult but yes you’ve already started down a path of changing your situation by reaching out. Often when we feel trapped it’s not a physical prison but situations of our own making and own choices. But when others are involved, especially others we care about, our lives and our prisons can be defined by the choices others select.

      One of the greatest powers we have to find our own freedom is to make our own choices. I hope you were able to reach out and find someone to help you through your decisions and to provide you with support in your life. If you’ve visited this site, you might be considering choices to take back control of your destiny, and to give yourself permission to be selfish once in your life and to end it as you wish.

      If this is your thought, do not despair, it does not have to be the end. Rather, I would encourage you to feed your selfish desires, and to make it a regular, continuing habit. Because suicide is nothing more than taking back your life according to your own terms, and not having to live with the consequences.

      Instead I would ask you to consider taking back your own life according to your terms, and living with the consequences. One factor that many in the West consider is the notion of suicide being a sin and damnation being a possible consequence of death. Without regard to your philosophy, I would consider that the selfish nature of suicide is often noted as a way to blame the suffering considering suicide, and not of those that may unwittingly being contributing to the suffering.

      Simply put, instead of risking your own eternal hell through suicide, or instead of subjecting yourself to your own hell on earth, the selfish feelings at the root of suicide, the desire for life to be better than it is, should be not ridiculed but instead nourished. Instead of putting yourself through hell, to hell with the demands of others that are contributing to your feelings of imprisonment and your lack of power.

      It is OK to be selfish and tell others “No”, and to distance yourself from those that bring their unpleasantness into your life, and to give yourself more time for others that provide you more support and who nurture your independence. The selfishness that you think you are feeling may not be the first step into oblivion, but instead a natural feeling that your body is sending you to tell yourself that you are unhappy and need to simply take that first step on a new path of changing your life.

      Although it is perfectly understandable if the first steps down any new path feel like oblivion. That’s why it’s important that you choose your companions carefully for this journey, and make sure that those nearest you are there for support and health down a path of hope, and not despair. Any new journey is difficult, but the first steps are the most difficult, and the further you walk the easier it gets.

  • David March 21, 2018, 5:29 am

    1,2,7,9,11,14. I am 47 (male) and I feel like a failure. Up until I was 33 I was very happy and content. At 33 I was happy in my marriage and we owned our house mortgage free. That was the year that I discovered my wife had had an affair for at least 6 months when we were both 30 and living overseas – it was a complete shock!

    When we moved back home she continued the affair through emails and sending explicit photos. It only stopped because I discovered what was going on one day when I looked at her phone.

    She begged me to stay (which I did) and because of my shame about it have told very few people. After about a month we started having sex again although I now realize I was still very much in shock at the time and probably should have restrained. Anyway, she got pregnant very soon after – we now have 3 kids together.

    We moved overseas again (different place than first overseas location) and sold our house. For me, a big part of the move was because I didn’t want to be in the house that would remind me of her affair.

    In our current location we are no longer financially secure due to some disappointing investments and because I have been without work for 2 years now. I fear that I am financially letting my family down and that my future looks bleak.

    I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to retire, or worse, I may not be able to help fund my kids education to give them a heads start in life.

    Although I have forgiven my wife I still struggle with the insecurity and pain that her affair caused me. In some ways I feel like I’m still suffering some kind of PTSD over it.

    In many ways I think my family would be better off without me and my pain would stop if I ended my life. I know it’s not the right thing to do but the thought is there at increasing frequency… That’s my sad story. Thanks for listening.

  • qwertyuiop March 15, 2018, 2:42 pm

    The reasons I considered suicide were 3, 7, 14 and 8. In school classmates were constantly making fun of me and any attempt to defend myself (apparently teachers prefer to pretend they’re blind and deaf instead of actually dealing with the problem) only made problem worse – by making me look like a bad guy who deserves punishment.

    As an adult, lack of confidence prevent me from even trying to get a job, so now I’m basically sitting in my parent’s basement, waiting for a miracle. No matter how educated I am, I always feel like I’m not good enough to get hired. Without a job I have no income and my family isn’t rich, so there goes reason 14. Having literally no friends and not talking with anyone except my close family doesn’t help either.

    Just imagine Tomoko Kuroki as 32 years old dude – that’s probably the closest description I can think of now. Why I didn’t, after all? Well, I think of mostly two reasons:

    1. I may have no friends, but my family does actually care. My mother would be devastated if I kill myself and I can’t do it to her. My grandma is still alive and I can’t do it to her either.

    2. Those jerks who made fun of me in school pretty much openly wanted me to kill myself. By committing suicide I’d do exactly what they wanted. I’m not going to give them that satisfaction, never. Not killing myself is a way of saying “f*** you” to them.

    • Doug April 28, 2018, 7:41 pm

      Family is always #1. I lived a selfish life and didn’t pay enough attention to how important family is. Mom, dad, cousins, aunts, uncles. Keep in contact with them. Use social media.

      Are you seeing a Psych? An anti-anxiety like Doxepin can block out the “noise” so you can move on with your life. If you are educated, have you truly “Mastered” what you need to get a good job?

  • Ally March 13, 2018, 2:43 am

    I am quite young (14) and for a while, I had thought about killing myself. I was bullied, felt alone, and stressed (from school and sports). I stopped hurting myself recently and thinking about suicide and because of this I have come to a new understanding about life general.

    Yes, I never believed it when people said, “It gets better.” or “You are not.” etc. I do know now though that this is true. By killing yourself you end the possibility of life getting any better. After seeking help I learned to block out the bullying. (Yes, I do know its not easy).

    I also learned that you are not alone. It may not seem like it but their is always somebody who cares. You might not have even met them, or realized that they care yet. I know now that its the little things you live for too.

    For example, I was ready to do it then my dog walk past me, I put the pills back in the bottle and hugged her and cried on her. And finally it helps to read stories by people (like me) who almost killed themselves but didn’t.

    Yes, it gets better, no, you are not alone, and you learn to live for the little things.

    • Doug April 28, 2018, 7:18 pm

      99.9% of the people you meet in high school you will never see or need again in your life. So go to school and ignore the “noise” because of what I just wrote. Go to school and “Master” one or two subjects. Make them a passion, even if they aren’t. Math and science.

      And then make yourself “Valuable” in the world by having “Mastered” something that will make you stand out from the herd when looking for a job.

      The successful people that I know made the decision to be poor in their 20’s by seeking a higher education and living modestly, setting themselves up for a better future… I partied all through my 20’s and now I’m paying the price at 50.

      • Kim August 2, 2018, 4:05 am

        Bullies, assholes…. they’re all manifesting inner conflict and hatred that has nothing to do with you. Educate yourself and do things that build self-esteem. Little accomplishments go along way. Totally agree with Doug. Your perspective is not accurate, life will improve when you make it.

  • Orion March 12, 2018, 5:00 pm

    I am 2, 3, 9, 15. I have attempted twice and looking for a third, I am 16 I got kicked out of my house at the beginning of the year and now live with a close friend who is dating my recent ex. I am failing all of my classes plus in a group called m12.

    I don’t have much affiliation with them anymore but they also know my address and my school friends. I just haven’t been wanting to deal with it. I also have written poetry as an escape and I sing. I have been judged for being bi, and I have been bullied my whole life. I don’t expect much from ppl anymore and I just can’t go through.

    I hope people read this and realize how many similar cases there are out there. I will be an example for them, and show them all what happens from cyber bullying and from being neglected. I also come from a family of ten and chose to play a series of five sports that once thrilled my parents. I don’t have anyone I’m willing to stay for.

    • Imani March 30, 2018, 3:34 am

      Please believe me that when you are an adult, you will have more options. I promise you that YOU can make things better. My heart goes out to you. I wanted to die for most of my life before I hit 28. It was only because I was only allowed to get to know myself starting at the age of 18.

      The process of self mastery should be faster for those who learned independence early on. Childhood is terrible when your cards were not the best. I love your spirit just from reading your words. Life will surprise you in a good way.

  • Doug March 11, 2018, 8:34 pm

    I’ll go with 1, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14. Been in #11 for a few years. Life really is pointless when you dig deeper. Are you really THAT valuable to this planet? NO. Life is just one big routine of being a slave to something. Whether it be a job, family, booze, dope or whatever.

    Always looking for something to make us happy because life is just depression with happiness sprinkled in every once in awhile. The powers above us give us just enough “Hope(ium)” to keep us waiting for our next fix of “what’s going to make me happy today”?

    Oh, wow. The sun is out for the first time in a month! WOW! Life is great! Blahhhhh… My number one regret in life is not offing myself in my 20’s. I knew this world was a sh**hole, yet slaved onward… for nothing. Now, I have a daughter and she is all that keeps me here. Having nothing to lose is so much easier…

    • Evie March 19, 2018, 9:20 am

      I’m in the exact same situation, minus the kiddo and I’m still in my 20’s-contemplating suicide daily. Just living because family wants me around. I honestly feel like everyone is at least a little suicidal, and we all keep going ’cause we don’t want to let down someone that loves us. Bummed.

  • Rose March 11, 2018, 12:04 pm

    #14. All my life. 60 yrs. I’m struggling yet working hard with nothing to show for it. I wish I was not born and that I would’ve been one of the stillborn that didn’t make it from my mom. I have concluded it was God’s plan for me and I have been thinking about it a lot lately, but I have to get things in order. Once done, I will be ready. No more worries.

  • Andrew Reid February 12, 2018, 6:10 am

    I would surmise that suicide is part of our core basic instincts as it has also been observed in other animals in despair. Animals pine for lost mates, lost status (deposed Badger leaders commit suicide by self imposed starvation), lost territory (Blackbirds, Robins, etc.) and lost owners (Dogs). Nature has a self destruct system that can be triggered given certain mental stimuli in animals and therefore it should be found in humans also.

    It is just that in our modern existence sometimes these ancient instincts can be activated and the self destruct “code” accidentally typed in by outside circumstances such as unemployment and persecution. Imaging a scenario, back in our more primitive times tens of thousands of years ago, where a male member of a group is badly injured, becomes disabled and is unable to hunt.

    He can still be useful back at the cave with passing on skills to the next generation, standing watch, fabricating tools and weapons but he would feel left out of the hunting parties. He feels the seeds of depression as he mourns his lost hunter role and status. Then comes along a period where the hunting is bad and food is scarce.

    Tensions are high in the group. Some individuals resort to blaming and shaming with our character on the receiving end. He lapses deeper into depression and it reaches a point where something is triggered deep in the instinctive core programming. He starts to reason that there would be more food for the children and that everyone would be better off if he wasn’t around anymore.

    So one night, when everybody in the cave is asleep he limps away into the night to put himself out of his misery. So my argument is that nature has placed the instinct for altruistic suicide in humans and a host of other creatures as part of group survival.

    It is just that it can be accidentally triggered by mistake in humans and the countdown clock activated. Spotting that the self destruct sequence is running is the tricky part and then defusing it. Then there’s preventing somebody toxic making the situation worst.

  • Elizabeth February 5, 2018, 1:21 pm

    I am 1, 3, 7, 8, 10 and 14. My mom passed mid January and I have to support my dad. My sister is distant when it comes to helping my patents(financially and medically) so it is all on me. I quit my job in mid 2017 due to lack of supervisory support and slowly being forced out of my position(they got rid of my position after I resigned) a truly toxic work environment. I cashed out my retirement to live and help my parents. I have extremely low self confidence to find a new job and the latest on my mom’s passing is making me wonder why carry on.

  • Leigh January 29, 2018, 4:38 am

    Yes, the money thing has nearly done away with me a couple of times. The injustice of it is that I have worked my whole life to the betterment of the common good! It’s terrifying that I am going to be approaching old age with nothing, and no one to help me.

  • Marie January 20, 2018, 1:13 am

    I have every one of the things on this list-plus I am about to be homeless. I look forward to death.

    • Gayle March 7, 2018, 11:17 pm

      Marie, I used to have all of the above, and I was homeless a few times. But there are resources that can help you get back on your feet, and to find an enjoyable and meaningful life. I know homeless shelters can be scary, and couch surfing can be taxing on friendships, but it’s nothing to be ashamed of if that happens.

      There are many families and a few executives I’ve known to live in homeless shelters after they had lost their jobs, and they found the resources to pick themselves back up. You can go to the local library and/or human services agency to look up some resources that can help you with all of your circumstances.

      I know it’s a lot of legwork, but it’s worth it. Churches can help, too; not all churches require that you be a “believer” or a “member” for them to help the community. You matter, and there’s hope. The resources are based on locality, so I don’t have any links here. But a suicide prevention hotline might be able to offer better tips than I can: 1-800-273-8255.

      As hard as it was for me (I won’t bore you with the details), I managed to find the support I needed, utilize the homeless shelters and their services, and get therapy for my depression, among other things. I met some of the most helpful people during this journey, and I will be forever grateful to them. I know you can find the things you need to help you, and you are worth it! Please don’t give up.

  • Linda December 24, 2017, 12:20 pm

    Reading all the comments on this site, I know how you feel. I’m 44, effectively a bankrupt, caring for a disabled mother and elderly father. I have one sibling who is toxic and abusive and frightens my parents. I have three cousins whom I loved but they cut me out of their lives many years ago without explanation.

    Mum was an only child born out of wedlock and then her mom died and she was brought up by aunts and uncles who covered her background up. So there is a huge hole of no family there. I have never had a relationship which puzzled me but the reason I believe now is that I bring nothing to the table so to speak. To have kids anyway would be to create more problems than it would solve.

    I’m done trying to create the cosmetic appearance of a family or social life on my own. I do everything on my own and at this stage don’t care. I feel guilty saying this but some of us simply seem to have thinner, more watery connections to this Earth, that we fell through accidentally. I’m not going to kill myself but I am going to pray to God daily that after my parents cross over that I cross over quietly in my sleep shortly after them.

  • jasmy gunatilaka March 19, 2017, 8:54 am

    7, 8 and 14. I’m close to ending it.

    • Cindy March 20, 2017, 6:24 pm

      Hi Jasmy, Those are my ‘lucky’ numbers too! I am sorry that you are struggling with the same. It is very frustrating and stressful. How long have you been looking for work? What kind of work do you want to do? You feel lonely and that’s one of the worst feelings but please know that you are not alone.

  • Aidan March 11, 2017, 4:09 am

    I am currently experiencing number 8. I do go to a very large school but I only have one friend who lives far away and is sick quite often. Whenever I get home from school I usually go down in my basement and play on my Xbox. This is my life 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days of the year.

    • Cindy March 14, 2017, 11:56 pm

      Hi Aidan. Sorry your friend isn’t nearer. I hope you are connected online at least to your friend or other gamers. Sounds like you are going through a lonely time. Me too. Living in a new city, feels like the worst time ever. Hang in there. It’s not forever. It will get better.

  • Isolated Young Widow February 26, 2017, 5:09 am

    My husband died 4 years ago. He was 38. Left me with 4 kids, 2 special needs. I want to die every day. I can’t believe I have to do this alone. There is very little help with what I really need help with.

    My brother never calls me. I have no family around. No one cares. No one really cares. Every day I have to wake up to this black cloud hovering over me. It never leaves. My middle daughter is a nightmare. I will never live through this. I’m so done.

    • Jack March 7, 2017, 11:10 pm

      I don’t want to say, I feel your pain as I have my own. But if your brother doesn’t call, call him. Maybe, maybe something good will happen. Keep talking as talking sometimes stumbles on a solution. I stumbled on this site recently, wish I had stumbled on it long ago, before my daughter committed suicide. I would do anything to fix my daughter and will listen to you when you need to talk. Keep talking.

  • Mike January 27, 2017, 8:49 am

    I had a highly successful career in music and technology as a design engineer. When my partner left leaving me in a hellish situation of loneliness and despair I took antidepressants. The medication reacted badly with some vitamins I was taking, and this has left me with hearing loss, balance problems and excruciatingly, I cannot even keep my eyes still.

    I also have persistent tinnitus. My life has since fallen apart, and I’m about lose my job. The torture of tinnitus and eyes moving in addition to hearing loss as a lifelong music industry professional and living alone, with hostile family, doctors and now losing all my friends I feel it’s almost inevitable I must commit suicide.

    I wake up everyday with the death sentence over my head, for the crime of seeking help! The world is constantly moving in my eyes thus I never get to relax, can’t watch TV or have hobbies or interests or even care how things look, I also can’t listen to music due to the hearing loss… I’m only 40, what exactly does the future hold like that? I had an amazing life before the antidepressant pill destroyed my ears…

    • Eli March 6, 2017, 2:31 pm

      Wasn’t there a famous musician who was deaf? Beethoven or Mozart, or someone like that? You can do this.

      The symptoms might lessen in time, or maybe new medical technology will help your condition. Living with a disability can be tough, but perhaps look to Beethoven or Stephen Hawkings for inspiration. Hone skills that require less sight and hearing, such as cooking or music marketing.

      I know it must be tough. But I hope you can get past this tough time.

  • Michaela January 8, 2017, 11:56 pm

    I’m 13 and I have been having suicidal thoughts due to stress, bullies, and other things. I’ve been picked on, made fun of because I’m too short or too fat or ugly, and I thought there was no way out of it but death for me. But the things said here have helped me to see that there is another way to deal with this and that I should value life while I have it. Now I know that there are other people that are going through tougher things than me. There are people like me. Thanks to all of you, Michaela Prince.

    • Jack March 7, 2017, 11:04 pm

      Good for you. I am so glad to see something positive. Soon, my daughter will be gone 1 year and I dread every day as that day approaches. Hang in there, there will be some good days and hopefully they will outnumber the bad. We all have bad days, it’s part of life, but there is always tomorrow.

  • Isaac Billman December 19, 2016, 4:40 pm

    I experience 4 and 8. I choose not to express these feelings, there are just thoughts that keep running through my head that I just can’t control. It has just gotten away from me.

  • Robin December 19, 2016, 11:00 am

    My beautiful disabled daughter has been struggling with the devil of suicide. We have taken her for meds, repeatedly, therapy to top notch provider, and make her know how much we and all her nine siblings and their families love her… her primary provider retired but still calls us and her to find out how she is doing and interfaces regularly with new doctor.

    Sadly this triggered by PTSD caused by raid on our home not over anything she’d or we’d done but accusations made against our son by his ex… who blackmailed him and worsened by my dear disabled combat veteran hubby becoming bedridden… please pray for her. I’m so sorry for all of your pain. Hugs and prayers for all of you.

  • Enter to win November 23, 2016, 11:26 am

    I look at pictures of the cosmos and think about how lucky I am that I get to be a part of it. I am still in pain. But I know I have worth, even if I am the only one who loves me. I am happy to get up and experience nature… the sun… the moon… stars… the wind blowing. I have ulcerative colitis and have horrible bouts with it.

    I get through them and worry about my next flare. I have Borderline PD and type 2 diabetes. I don’t want to die. I watch puppy videos and I feel better. I hope everyone here has some peace on this earth. I hope you find some pleasure and experience something good on your worst days. Some comfort.

  • Adrian November 12, 2016, 3:36 pm

    I suffer from long term major depression. I am 54. Antidepressants and other medical treatment have never helped. I have lived in the hell of depression for thirty years. I wish that I had killed myself long ago. Nothing is worth the suffering of existence. It will never get better. At my age, single, depressed, lonely, my life is not worth living. Better to drink the hemlock. I curse the day that I was born.

    • Starfish November 25, 2016, 10:05 am

      Adrian… single is not a bad thing. Don’t fall into how society measures us. It’s not their business. Having someone doesn’t make someone… living a life that you love others with nothing in return does. Many are without someone… and many are with someone that they suffer misery but are too scared to be alone.

      You have to write down your good things. We all have them. My girlfriend is a quadriplegic and just lost her daughter to suicide… has no husband… and the story is worse than many can imagine. She still gets up and finds something to live for. I am ashamed at times I get down.

      A book that may change your life is Living a Life Without Limits. I saw him at my church on stage and even Google it. No limbs no worries. Read his story. God bless and fight the fight. No point going early… you have a purpose and one day you will be glad you fought a good fight to see it.

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