Suicidal thoughts

Raindrops on a window.

Suicidal thoughts can occur when we feel too much pain without having resources to cope, but there are other ways to stop this pain.

You may believe that suicide is the only option left. Suicidal thoughts and feelings are very real and scary and can range from abstract thoughts about ending your life to making clear specific plans.

These feelings will pass and the thoughts you have are only thoughts – they are not necessarily true.

In an emergency, speak to someone now:

  • Ask someone to phone 999.
  • Security: internal 3333, external +44 (0)1904 32 3333, or freephone +44 (0)800 43 3333.
  • Local Accident and Emergency: call 999
  • Samaritans: 116 123 (UK) or +44 (0)8457 909 090 (International, or if using an internal phone)

What can we do to help?

If you don’t feel this is an emergency but you do want help, complete the Open Door online referral form. Alternatively, speak to your doctor.

If you cannot tell someone close to you how you feel, you can anonymously contact a confidential helpline:

Causes of suicidal feelings

Suicidal feelings can affect anyone, whatever your background, gender, age or race. You may not be able to identify a single cause. Suicidal feelings are often caused by a combination of factors and may have built out a general feeling of worthlessness over time.

Men are more likely to die by suicide. Although the reasons for this aren’t clear, if you are a man you may feel pressure not to talk about your feelings and to cope without help.

Mind have a webpage specifically addressing the causes of suicide, including male suicide, which you may find helpful.

In crisis now

Call 999 for emergency services - or for security services on campus call 01904 32 3333 or use the Safezone app.

Who to contact

For initial Open Door appointments please complete the online referral form which is on the Help and Support page.

Open Door 
Sally Baldwin Block B
Tel: +44 (0)1904 322140
Email: opendoor@york.ac.uk

Opening Times

Term Time: Monday - Friday 9am - 10.00pm
Vacation Times: Monday - Friday 10am - 4pm

Please note we are closed weekends and Bank Holidays.

Related content

Stay Alive app

Stay Alive offers free help and advice on suicide prevention, for yourself, or someone you're concerned about.

What can I do to help myself?

  • Talk to someone you trust.
  • Do something that will help you feel better right now.
  • Tell yourself about the good things you have done today.
  • Stop any risk taking behavior.
  • Look after yourself physically.
  • Make your home safe – remove things you could use to hurt yourself.
  • Do not expect to feel OK all at once.
  • Remember this can happen to anybody.
  • Take hope – people do get through this.
  • Don’t keep these feelings to yourself.

Suicide is the most difficult manner of death for those left behind to understand and cope with. It will affect parents, children, siblings, partners, friends, flat mates, tutors and even casual acquaintances.

If you have been affected by suicide, Support after Suicide offers help, support, and information.

Resources