Many of us have been touched by suicide and the loss of a loved one, family member or friend. Ahead of World Suicide Prevention Day (September 10), has put together these eight powerful suicide prevention quotes to offer hope to anyone in need.


It’s estimated that around 15 per cent of the adult population will experience depression at one point or another throughout life. And, accordingly to the World Health Organization, that means there are currently over 300 million people in the world currently living with depression. Whatever the cause, for some of these people, the emotional pain will become too much and they will consider suicide as an option of escape. In fact, around 800,000 people go through with suicide every year, and for each of those, there are around 25 times more suicide attempts.

There are many factors alongside and including depression and mental illness that influence a person’s decision to go through with suicide: chronic ill health, guilt, trauma, substance abuse or loss, for example. The tragic thing is that many of those who consider suicide don’t really want to die; they just don’t know how to deal with the pain they’re experiencing. 

If you’ve ever been suicidal or know someone that has, you’ll know that without help, escaping that feeling of wanting to end it all is difficult. If you’re having difficulty opening up to others about your problems, sometimes searching for inspirational words online can offer some psychological comfort and help to get you through the day.

We've put together these suicide prevention quotes to give anyone who is considering ending their life a chance to stop, reflect and reevaluate their situation. Inspirational quotes can’t take the pain away, but they may allow someone the chance to shift their perspective just enough to give them a little bit of hope and get through another day. Please feel free to share these powerful messages of hope. 


Suicide prevention quotes: 8 powerful sayings 

1. “Soak up the views. Take in the bad weather and the good weather. You are not the storm.” Matt Haig

Author Matt Haig – who lives with depression and has written widely on it – cleverly compares the ever-changing weather to our mental health. Haig himself came close to suicide aged 24 while living in Ibiza, so this suicide prevention quote is particularly poignant. What Haig is saying is that although depression comes and goes, it is not who we are and should not define us. In his best-selling book, Reasons to Stay Alive, he writes: “Understand, for instance, that having a sad thought, even having a continual succession of sad thoughts, is not the same as being a sad person.” His inspirational quote suggests that we should be mindful of our depressive thoughts and recognize that they can – and will – pass. 



2. Suicide doesn’t end the chances of life getting worse, it eliminates the possibility of it ever getting any better. – Unknown

Those who are deeply depressed and considering suicide usually have difficulty realizing that their life can get better. The aforementioned author Matt Haig is a great example: he was about to kill himself, but now has a successful career and a loving family. If you choose suicide, then you're eliminating future hope and the possibility of finding happiness and enjoyment. 

When the mind is so dark, it can be hard to see any possibility for future happiness, but it can – and often does – get better. Whether it’s through taking medication, counselling, exercise, eating well, getting into a routine, or setting goals, these steps will help you on your path. Know that it is possible to recover from feelings of depression, pain, and suicidal thoughts. 


3. “Never, never, never give up.” Winston Churchill

Some people with depression may have been fighting against the illness and/or suicidal tendencies for many months or years. Many of these people don’t actually want to stop living, but they cannot see a way through their despair. Indeed, the act of suicide is often associated with giving up on life.

This quote from the British Prime Minister – known for his strong resilience – is a signal to keep fighting. If you have depression and/or suicidal thoughts, you may be in so much pain that you don’t know how you’re going to survive, but if you can just push through each day, it gives hope that things can get better in the future. One day a time, or even one hour at a time. By never giving up you’re quietly building an inner strength and resilience that will fortify you. 


4. “If you’re looking for a sign not to kill yourself, this is it.” – Unknown

If you’re thinking about suicide and looking for a sign to stay alive, consider this quote your sign. Whether you realize it or not, you have the opportunity to make a positive difference in this world. Somebody out there can benefit from your unique talents and gifts. Sometimes all you may need to keep going is a simple sign letting you know that someone cares and wants you to keep living. This quote is your sign. 



5. “The person who completes suicide, dies once. Those left behind die a thousand deaths, trying to relive those terrible moments and understand… why?” – Clark

Sometimes people who commit suicide are not fully aware – or are in such a dark place – that they don’t consider that taking their own life will create a huge amount of pain for their loved-ones left behind. Imagine how you would feel if a person you care deeply about took their own life. It's difficult to recover from the death of a loved one, but it’s usually harder if the individual committed suicide. The act of suicide leaves people behind with unanswered questions and feelings of confusion and shame, as well as the guilt around being able to prevent the suicide. 

This suicide prevention quote is realistic because although a suicide may end an individual’s internal pain, the friends and family who loved the person will continue to suffer as a result of their loss. In fact, on average, every suicide leaves an estimated six or more "suicide survivors" — those who've lost someone they care about deeply and are left to struggle with their grief. Furthermore, people who've recently lost someone through suicide are themselves at an increased risk of thinking about, planning, or attempting suicide, further exacerbating the ripple effect of pain and suffering. 


6. “If you want to show me that you really love me, don’t say that you would die for me, instead stay alive for me.” – Unknown

This suicide prevention quote shows deep sentiment from a friend, family member or a partner in a close relationship. People who are feeling suicidal can often feel like they are a burden to their loved ones, which is not the case. This quote serves as a personal reminder from your loved ones that they would much prefer you to stay in their lives than to leave. If you really want to sacrifice your life, do it by living and contributing to make someone’s else’s life better – rather than eliminating your existence.


“Inspirational quotes around suicide prevention can’t take the pain away, but they may allow you to shift your perspective just enough to give yourself a little bit of hope and to get through another day.”


7. “Place your hand over your heart, can you feel it? That is called purpose. You’re alive for a reason so don’t ever give up.” – Unknown

Sometimes suicidal people want to die simply because they believe they have no reason to continue living. It may sound simple, but the fact that you’re alive and your heart is still beating and pumping blood around your body can be reason enough to keep living. Many depressed people are struggling because they're unhappy with their life and work and cannot find a specific life purpose.

But, in reality, you don’t need a purpose or reason for being alive. However, if you are alive, you still have the opportunity to do whatever you want in life. Although you may not have awakened to a specific life mission yet, while your heart is still beating you have time to explore what your life purpose could be and find happiness. 


8. “When you feel like giving up, just remember the reason why you held on for so long.” – Unknown

This is a powerful suicide prevention quote that challenges a person considering ending their life to stop and reconsider the reasons why they’ve continued to stay strong and fight up until now. Most people have powerful reasons – such as their children, family and loved ones – for fighting through their pain and anguish. This quote helps you to think about the parts of your life that hold significant meaning for you and that force you to push through the day and keep going – even when you don’t feel like it.

So, whether you want to keep fighting to provide for your family, to be there for your partner or to find your purpose in the the world and make a difference, chances are you do have a reason to keep living. ●

Main image: shutterstock/Jannarong


If you're in a dark place and considering suicide, please reach out to someone you know or through one of these global helplines. You can also discuss suicide, depression, anxiety and other challenges over in our forum


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My most important take away here:  "The tragic thing is that many of those who consider suicide don’t really want to die; they just don’t know how to deal with the pain they’re experiencing."

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