Talking about suicidal feelings can save lives, so always take it seriously if a friend opens up to you. Asking them about suicidal feelings won’t increase their risk of taking their own life - instead, it will show them someone cares, and give them an opportunity to talk through their problems.

Tips:

  • Don’t shy away from the topic. Ask how they’re doing, and if they’re being cryptic, try to help them explain
  • Try not to be judgemental or dismissive in response to what they’ve said
  • If the person needs further support that you can’t provide, signpost them to Samaritans or to the emergency services, depending on their needs.

While it can seem scary, taking the time to allow someone to speak about how they’re feeling can be a huge help.

Read guidance from the Samaritans on what you can do if you’re worried someone is suicidal.

“Contemplating suicide, alone, as a 20-year old who was meant to be out enjoying the ‘best years of his life’, was an incredibly difficult thing to think about every day. But, a few conversations truly saved my life.” - George