Experiencing suicidal thoughts or feelings

Your safety and wellbeing are very important - no matter how low or bad things might seem, there are people who can support and listen to you. If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts or feelings, please read the information below for help and guidance.

There are also out-of-hours and community contact details and helplines at the bottom of this page.


Seeking support saves lives

Research suggests that 1 in 5 of us experience thoughts of suicide. Suicidal thoughts are not as uncommon as we might think - they are experienced by a great number of people. Anyone can end up feeling suicidal for many different reasons. Seeking help is important, as it can stop thoughts from moving to a place of action.

Reasons for feeling suicidal can be related to:

  • Feeling alone or isolated
  • Distressing or overwhelming experiences such as bereavement, bullying, assault, abuse, job loss, money worries, mental health issues, worries about sexuality or experience of racism.

The feeling of being trapped or stuck, unable to escape from a situation, and feelings of hopelessness can also make thoughts of suicide more pronounced.

You may know someone who has died by suicide or hear about this happening either in the community or through social media. Hearing or reading about this can be difficult and trigger thoughts of suicide.

No matter what the reasons are for feeling suicidal, they are important and valid. Whatever is causing you distress, we want you to know that help is available and that with the right support, it is possible to start feeling hopeful and regain a sense of emotional balance.

University support

We are here to listen and give you the support you need. Please reach out to speak to one of our professionally-trained advisers.


Guidance and resources

Looking after your friends

If you have concerns about a friend, please share information about our Counselling & Mental Wellbeing service.

For referral to the Counselling & Mental Wellbeing team, please ask for the student's consent and contact counselling@napier.ac.uk.

Encourage them to contact their GP, as they can support the student's overall wellbeing and make referrals to other parts of the NHS and prescribe medication. In addition, you can speak to our safeguarding team by emailing safeguarding@napier.ac.uk.

Please feel free to share the out of hours and community crisis contacts at the bottom of this page.

Looking after yourself

When supporting someone who is having a challenging time, especially if they are expressing suicidal thoughts or plans, you may feel overwhelmed and need to look after yourself. Please reach out for support from your GP, NHS 24, or use the out of hours/community support links at the bottom of this page.

If you're a student at Edinburgh Napier, please get in touch with our counselling team for support by emailing counselling@napier.ac.uk.

If you are particularly concerned about someone's wellbeing, please call emergency services on 999.

University student suicide awareness training

Zero Suicide Alliance have developed a short training for University students. If you would like training about how to talk to someone who has thoughts of suicide, this training takes 20 mins and can be very helpful. There are three scenarios of talking to someone experiencing suicidal ideation, and the training talks through how you can support them and what you can do to help them.

Please visit the Zero Suicide Alliance website to find out more.

Information for parents and carers

If you are a parent or carer and have concerns about someone in your care, please take time to listen and talk to them. You can discuss their options to reach out to their GP and other NHS services, or encourage them to go to our University Counselling & Mental Wellbeing team for support. This is important as GPs can make referrals to other parts of the NHS and discuss medication.

Parents and carers can, with or without the student's permission, contact University services such as Counselling and Safeguarding to share concerns.

  • For referral to the Counselling & Mental Wellbeing team, please ask for the student's consent and contact counselling@napier.ac.uk.
  • You can contact our Safeguarding team to raise concerns and explore University support by emailing safeguarding@napier.ac.uk.

Please note that due to GDPR and confidentiality, we may be limited to what we can discuss on an individual basis.

Information for Edinburgh Napier staff

If you as a member of staff at Edinburgh Napier require support, please reach out to your GP, the University EAP service and make use of our Mental Health Champions. At the bottom of this page, you'll find a list of out of hours and community support contacts which you can access directly.

Academics & Professional staff with concern for a student

If you are an academic or professional services colleague and are concerned about a student, please see the crisis contact information at the bottom of this page and share it with them. You should note your concern, raise it with your line manager, and reach out to safeguarding.

If you are not sure about sharing information, you can seek support and advice from our Safeguarding team by emailing safeguarding@napier.ac.uk. For referral to the Counselling & Mental Wellbeing team, please ask for the student's consent and contact counselling@napier.ac.uk.

Worried about a colleague

If you are worried about a colleague at Edinburgh Napier University, please speak to your manager or reach out to our team of Mental Health Champions. Please feel free to share information about the University EAP service and out of hours and community support contacts listed at the bottom of this page.


Out of hours and community support


Here for you 9am to midnight every day of the year.

Edinburgh Crisis Centre

24 hour NHS service provided for those in crisis due to mental health issues.


24 hour helpline for any students feeling distressed.

Victim Support

Open Monday-Thursday, 9am-4.30pm, and Fridays from 9am-4pm.

Rape Crisis Centre

This is the Scottish centre, and the helpline is open from 6pm to midnight, 7 days a week.


Trained volunteer students offer support to other students. Available 8am-8pm during term time.

S.O.B.S – Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide

Support line open Mondays and Tuesdays, 9am-5pm.

Grief Chat

The GriefChat service allows you to talk instantly with a qualified and professional bereavement counsellor. Open Monday to Friday, 9am-9pm. Within those hours, a chat box will appear in the bottom right corner of the screen and invite you to talk. Outside of opening hours, you can leave a message and someone will come back to you via email once service resumes.

Edinburgh Self-Harm Project