suicide note or death note is a message that states the author has died by or plans to die by suicide, and left to be discovered.  12–20% of suicides leave notes. According to Gelder, Mayou and Geddes (2005) one in six leave a suicide note whether written, audio, or video.  Others do not see the need of leaving behind any final communication. Maybe because they are focused on the suicide act, maybe choice was impulsive, or maybe because they have nothing to say and prefer the mystery. In some cases , they may not be physically capable of writing.

According to Dr. Lenora Olson, the most common reasons people write suicide notes are:

  • To ease the pain of those known to the victim.

  • To increase the pain by creating guilt.

  • To explain the reason(s).

  • To express thoughts and feelings not expressed or not expressable when alive

  • To give instructions for disposal of remains.

  • To confess some other offence like murder, see e.g. Marc Lépine’s suicide and videotaped statements of the 7 July 2005 London bombers.

The most common reasons suicides do not write a note are:

  • They are focused on the practicalities of what they are about to do (e.g. loading a pistol or tying a noose, etc.).

  • Their choice was impulsive, or at least hasty enough so no time was available to compose a suicide note.

  • They have nothing to say and/or nobody to say it to.

  • They feel that they cannot express what they wish to say.

  • They do not wish to write about their choice, or see no point.

  • They are illiterate.

  • They hope the suicide will be seen as an accident or homicide, common in those who wish to be buried in consecrated ground or hope their families collect insurance

Below are some of the many suicide notes left by the famous and not so famous.  Suicide notes can sometimes provide a reason and seek to express hidden feelings to the living once and for all.  Some suicide notes are written to cause guilt to those who left behind.  The contents range from I can’t living any longer for any number of specific reasons to wise cracks about the meaning or lack of meaning of life.  Some plea for absolution; some blame family, lovers or ex-lovers, the vagaries of fate, bad luck, health or all manner of particulars that to a third party may not be justification.

The following are the selected notable people who left the most obscure and unusual suicide notes.

Anonymous Post: A Last Letter

I have searched on the internet for the fastest and painless technique to suicide. And I found no answer. All of them hard and painful. So I have to find it by myself. I’ve thought about it and finally I know how. Inject air into my vein, that’s how. It will give me brain or…

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reaching out

Open Letter

Hi, It’s great that you are visiting this site. By reading this letter I hope you understand that acting on suicidal thoughts will in no way make you feel better. When a person is thinking about suicide it means that they are faced with a problem of such magnitude to themselves they simply can no…

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Anonymous Married Male Suicide Note

Two Suicide Notes – One Suicide Suicide Note #1 “What is a few short years to live in hell. That is all I get around here.  No more I will pay the bills. No more I will drive the car. No more I will wash, iron & mend any clothes.  No more I will have…

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Suicide note Virginia Woolf died March 28, 1941

“I feel certain that I’m going mad again. I feel we can’t go thru another of those terrible times. And I shan’t recover this time. I begin to hear voices.” Suicide note Virginia Woolf died March 28, 1941.  Important English author, essayist, publisher, and writer of short stories, regarded as one of the foremost modernist literary…

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Suicide note from Hunter S. Thompson

“Football Season Is Over.  No More Games. No More Bombs. No More Walking. No More Fun. No More Swimming. 67. That is 17 years past 50. 17 more than I needed or wanted. Boring. I am always bitchy. No Fun for anybody. 67. You are getting Greedy. Act your old age. Relax This won’t hurt.”…

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