"Death wish" redirects here. For the VOY episode, see Death Wish (episode).

Suicide is the termination of one's life by one's own hand. The action can be a personal choice brought on by extraneous circumstances, part of one's culture, or a military directive.

Cultural considerations

  • All Kaelons are required to perform suicide at age of sixty so that the elders won't stress the society. (TNG: "Half a Life")
  • Some Vulcans perform ritual suicide when they "reach a certain infirmity of age". (VOY: "Death Wish")
  • A Bolian medical philosophy on euthanasia was developed during their Middle Ages known as the "Double Effect Principle". The position held that an act which had the principle effect of relieving suffering was ethically acceptable even if the same act had the secondary effect of causing death. (VOY: "Death Wish")

Attempted or considered

  • Lieutenant Commander Data once considered zeroing his neural net, essentially wiping his entire memory and committing suicide. The formation of new neural pathways was very disorienting and he felt that starting all over again would be easier. He later decided not to do it. (TNG: "Eye of the Beholder")
  • Neelix nearly killed himself after being brought back from death with Borg nanoprobes and experiencing a serious crisis of faith. He almost beamed himself into open space, but fortunately Chakotay managed to stop him in time. (VOY: "Mortal Coil")
  • Worf wanted Riker to help him perform a ritual suicide called hegh'bat after experiencing a paralyzing spinal injury. (TNG: "Ethics")
  • The single survivor of a shipwreck, Anna, threatened to kill herself by jumping off a cliff in order to make Picard fall in love with her. In reality she was a man called Voval, an Iyaaran ambassador assigned to investigate the Human emotion of love. (TNG: "Liaisons")

Suicide performed

22nd century

23rd century

Kryton commits suicide

Kryton commits suicide

  • Kryton committed suicide with a phaser after sabotaging the engines of the Enterprise for the Klingons, in order to keep the sabotage secret. (TOS: "Elaan of Troyius")
  • Thelev, an Orion disguised as an Andorian ambassador, committed suicide with a poison pill to avoid capture after a mission to disrupt the Babel Conference failed. Although he said it was a "slow poison", he died quicker than even he expected. His comrades died when setting off the auto-destruct on the ship they were using to attack the Enterprise. (TOS: "Journey to Babel")

24th century

  • In an alternate timeline in which his father became trapped in subspace during a subspace inversion, an elderly Jake Sisko injected himself with poison during the short time when his father re-appeared in normal space - by dying when their "bond" was at its strongest, he was able to send him back to the time of the accident, and the captain knew to dodge the energy discharge which would trap him in the first place. (DS9: "The Visitor")
  • Scientist Gideon Seyetik flew a shuttlepod into the dead star at Epsilon 119, dying in the name of science to restart the star's nuclear reactions. His wife Nidell was unable to divorce him even if she wanted to. He felt how unhappy she was and decided the only way to make her happy was to end his life. (DS9: "Second Sight")
  • Boraalan Vorin performed ritual suicide due to cultural shock. He was unable to cope with the transition from his pre-industrial culture to the highly futuristic 24th century. (TNG: "Homeward")


Euthanasia is the termination of life by another party at the request of an individual who wishes to die. This may be for religious, cultural, or medical reasons. It can be regarded either as assisted suicide or as murder upon request of the victim.

  • Euthanasia services were provided to the victims of the "Quickening", the final stage of the painful, incurable and potentially fatal Teplan blight. (DS9: "The Quickening")

Uncertain or suicide missions

Listed here are character(s) who have performed potentially lethal activities, knowing the possible consequences.

  • Commander Data destroyed the Scimitar by firing a hand phaser at the thalaron generator, knowing it was totally impossible for him to survive the resulting explosion. (Star Trek Nemesis)
This is uncertain, as Data knew that his memory had been transferred to B-4.
  • In order to repair the warp engines of the Enterprise, Spock entered a radiation-flooded reactor room well knowing that he would probably not survive the radiation. (Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan)
This is uncertain, as Spock transferred his katra to McCoy before entering the reactor room.
  • Q, stripped of his powers and the reason the Calamarain attacked the USS Enterprise-D, left the ship in a shuttlecraft in an attempt to sacrifice himself and save the ship. (TNG: "Deja Q")
  • In an alternate timeline, following a devastating attack on the USS Kelvin by the Romulan starship Narada, acting captain George Kirk was forced to stay on board the Kelvin and set a collision course with the Narada after the auto pilot controls were destroyed. His actions helped save the fleeing shuttlecraft, which had abandoned ship on Kirk's orders. (Star Trek)

Fictional suicides

Methods of suicide

Death wishes

Sometimes, individuals may have suicidal urges that drive them into putting themselves into extremely dangerous and life-threatening situations. A tendency to expose oneself to such danger is often referred as a death wish.



Suicide has been a plot element on several Star Trek episodes, but only "Eye of the Beholder" and "Death Wish" have discussed the ethics of suicide.

See also

External link

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