If someone came up to me asking me questions like, “do you want to commit suicide? Why do you want to?” and then attempted to be friends with me afterwards, I would have a very difficult time putting stock into their word. The reason why is because relationships formed on a helper-suicidal basis tend to not last and are never really genuine. Relationships formed on said basis usually entail a lot of tip-toeing around certain issues (dishonesty or half-truths) and more often than not, culminate in the slow termination of the relationship when the helper believes that the suicidal has been “fixed,” and realizes that perhaps, outside of the helper-suicidal context, the suicidal may not be someone the helper would like to associate with.
There is also a sub-framework within the helper-suicidal relationship and it occurs when members of the opposite sex attempt to “help” each other out of their suicidal mindset. Some people–be it consciously or not–may scout for intimate relationships from suicidals as they make for easy options due to them typically being single and having low self-esteem.
If you want to help someone out of their suicidal frame of mind (which will most likely take several years, so be prepared for that too), there’s a few things you should know: long-distance (internet) relationships can be kind of cool, but usually aren’t that effective, especially if you and the suicidal live in different time zones. That been said, in-person relationships are optimal. Secondly, the most important part of forming a relationship with a suicidal person is to focus on the person they are apart from their suicide. Like… their hobbies or… their motivations or… what their perspective is on certain matters or better yet, what you can learn from them. Of course, you want to make them feel empowered to talk about their depression, so if that’s something that they’d like to talk about, you should always welcome that sort of conversation. Do not ridicule their methods/reasons for suicide (which has happened to me frequently on this website, believe it or not). And NEVER, EVER, make your decision to help a suicidal driven by intimacy. The moment intimacy becomes a speculated motive, everything you’ve tried to do has become undone. If you can manage to make these concepts your guiding principles, I believe that you’ll achieve much more than you would if you were to say… show them a documentary on suicide or explain to them the science behind depression or ask them very basic questions that have everything to do with their suicide or just make histrionic exhortations against suicide.
Be a friend, but an actual friend. Be interested in them. Determine what you can learn from them. And if you think those things are asking too much, then you quite simply don’t have what it takes to “emotionally heal” someone else (I cringe to even call it that).