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The suicide rate in Indonesia is considered low among Asian countries, but the underreporting rate is at a staggering 303%, and the latest reports suggest an increase in suicidal behaviour, particularly among young people. As a multicultural country, Indonesia has a complex system of beliefs about suicide. Thus, various aspects specific to Indonesia must be considered in understanding and preventing suicide. This paper explores Indonesian stakeholders’ perspectives through semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions. A total of 9 participants were individually interviewed, and 42 were involved in focus group discussions. They were mainly people with lived experiences of suicide. The other stakeholders were Indonesian experts who have experience in dealing with suicidal behaviour, helping people with a lived experience of suicide, or were involved in suicide prevention. Indonesian stakeholders highlighted various general and contextualised aspects concerning suicide. These aspects included a wide range of cultural beliefs and culturally specific warning signs, which included “bingung” (confusion) and longing for deceased persons. Other cultural beliefs such as viewing suicide as infectious, unpreventable, and guided by ancient spirits, and as an honourable act in some circumstances, also emerged. These findings can inform suicide prevention programs, including suicide prevention guidelines for Indonesia.

Original publication




Journal article


Behavioral Sciences



Publication Date





295 - 295