Suicidal Ideations: Active vs Passive

A symptom of depression and depressive episode is suicidal ideations. A suicidal ideation is the thought of taking one’s own life or dying. There are two types of suicidal ideations, passive and active. According to Valley Behavioral Health System “active suicidal ideation involves an existing wish to die accompanied by a plan for how to carry out the death. Passive suicidal ideation involves a desire to die, but without a specific plan for carrying out the death.”

I love life and I am thankful for so much in my life but my mental health condition causes me to experience these suicidal ideations. I participated in a 10-week long study on suicidal ideations in college students that taught me how to manage these ideations. In these sessions, I learned about mindfulness and I created my safety plan. Each of the techniques I learned during these sessions help me manage both my passive and active suicidal ideations. For a while these ideations subsided completely but they always come back and I was warned that they would. These ideations are painful and take so much out of me to fight them but I never want to stop fighting them.


Admitting that I experience these suicidal ideations causes me a lot of shame and pain. When thinking about these thoughts I feel guilty and like there is something wrong with me. I start to wonder why I am thinking them and why I can’t stop thinking about dying. But I always have to remind myself that these thoughts are due to my diagnosis and that I can successfully manage them.

If you are experiencing passive or suicidal ideation, remember that you have a choice. You can either give into them or to fight them and manage them. Choose to fight. Fight the thoughts that tell you that you aren’t good enough. Fight the thoughts that tell you that you’d be better off dead. Fight the thoughts that make you want to give up. Fight for your life and turn your life into the life you dream of. Don’t let these suicidal ideations take control of your life; take control of them.

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