NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Suicide warning: 'Try not to cope alone'

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Media captionAn Aberdeen woman whose life has been affected by suicide urges people not to try and cope alone over the festive period

Support groups, and an Aberdeen woman whose life has been affected by suicide, are urging people not to try and cope alone over the festive period.

Kathleen Findlay's mother took her own life after suffering from mental health problems.

She has written poetry about her experiences in the wake of her mother's death.

The Choose Life suicide prevention group said Christmas can be a "difficult" time for the lonely.

There were believed to be more than 50 suicides in the north east of Scotland in 2011.

Mrs Findlay told BBC Scotland: "My mum committed suicide when I was 15 which was over 30 years ago.

"It has affected the whole family.

"I bottled it up for 30 years. If we all opened up we could support each other."

Neil Murray, from Choose Life, said he believed the risks can be greater for those affected by or at risk from suicide over the festive period.

He said: "Christmas is a time for families, but not everyone is close to their family.

"Loneliness is a terrible thing.

"If you are feeling low or depressed there are organisations you can turn to."

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