Published online by Cambridge University Press: 15 April 2020
Suicide is one of leading cause of preventable deaths. Recent data suggest South India as one of the regions with highest suicide rates in World. In 2012, 1,35,445 people committed suicide in India according to the statistics released by the National Crime Records Bureau
Suicide note is one of the most important sources to understand suicide, which may be beneficial in suicide prevention. Studies on suicidal notes from this part of world are sparse
The aim was to study the themes in suicide notes that might be useful in prevention strategies
A descriptive study of all Suicide notes of those individuals who committed suicide between 2010 – 2013 available with Police Department,Mysore District was obtained and analysed.
A total of 22 suicide note were available. A majority of suicide note were in age group of 16-40 years (86%) and most were males (59%). All suicide notes were handwritten, majority (16) in regional language Kannada. Length of notes varied from just few words to few pages. Contents of suicide notes included apology, shame, guilt in 80%, love for those left behind (55%),instruction regarding practical affairs (23%). Most have blamed none for the act (50%). 23% committed suicide to prove their innocence. 32% mentioned a last wish.
Majority of suicidal note contained ‘guilt’ which is strong indicator of possible depression in deceased. Creating awareness about suicide among public ensuring access to professionals trained in suicide prevention is need of the hour in this part of world.