Thinking about death and dying is common—but having unwanted thoughts like this can still be scary. Death is so mysterious, and final—and suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. The problem might be feeling too miserable to go on, or feeling like you don’t belong in this world or don’t deserve to be here. When you’re at rock bottom, these problems may not seem temporary, but they are.
If the thought of killing yourself scares you, that’s actually a good sign. The part of you that’s scared is the part that wants to live. Fear isn’t a fun emotion to experience, but it can be a positive thing if it motivates you to ask for help.
In fact, thinking about suicide doesn’t necessarily mean you want to die at all. You might be having intrusive thoughts about death. These are thoughts that seemingly come from nowhere. Everyone has them from time to time. Most people are able to brush them off and continue on with their day, but this gets harder to do when you’re depressed.
Whether or not there’s any intent behind your thoughts about suicide, these thoughts are often a sign of mental illness. If you think you might be experiencing a mental illness like depression or anxiety, take one of our mental health tests. Then keep reading about what mental illness is and how it works. Learning more about what you’re experiencing and why can help you feel a sense of control, which can empower you to find a way to keep on living.
One of the most important things you can do is just to know that you’re not alone. Many people all over the world are struggling with the same things you are. Finding someone to open up to, like a trusted friend or family member, can help.
If you’re not sure who to talk to or how to talk to someone, you can reach the Suicide & Crisis Lifeline by calling or texting 988 or using the chat box at 988lifeline.org. You can also text “MHA” to 741-741 to reach the Crisis Text Line. Warmlines are an excellent place for non-crisis support. You can also look for support groups, where people talk about their own experiences and provide empathy and support.