Suicide, the most selfish act an individual can perform. Selfish because there is absolutely no concern for those left behind. Don’t get me wrong, to a degree, I understand it; the individual is suffering beyond what they think they can handle. I get it, I just hate it.
I have known at least five people personally who have committed suicide. One was a young playmates’ father, an uncle, a former sister-in-law, a year or so later her husband, and a co-worker.
We all have heard of the rash of former NFL players, and there are the many teens and young adults who were gay/lesbian that took their own lives. And of course there are the clinically depressed.
Laughingly, it is against the law to commit suicide (like they are ever gonna prosecute the successful), but the act itself is no laughing matter.
If only there was a way to show those individuals what was going to happen to their families and friends after they are gone. Especially the person who happens to be the unfortunate one that finds the body.
How can we as a society help to identify these individuals?
From the website http://www.helpguide.org/mental/suicide_prevention.htm
|Suicide Warning Signs|
|Talking about suicide||Any talk about suicide, dying, or self-harm, such as “I wish I hadn’t been born,” “If I see you again…,” and “I’d be better off dead.”|
|Seeking out lethal means||Seeking access to guns, pills, knives, or other objects that could be used in a suicide attempt.|
|Preoccupation with death||Unusual focus on death, dying, or violence. Writing poems or stories about death.|
|No hope for the future||Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and being trapped (“There’s no way out”). Belief that things will never get better or change.|
|Self-loathing, self-hatred||Feelings of worthlessness, guilt, shame, and self-hatred. Feeling like a burden (“Everyone would be better off without me”).|
|Getting affairs in order||Making out a will. Giving away prized possessions. Making arrangements for family members.|
|Saying goodbye||Unusual or unexpected visits or calls to family and friends. Saying goodbye to people as if they won’t be seen again.|
|Withdrawing from others||Withdrawing from friends and family. Increasing social isolation. Desire to be left alone.|
|Self-destructive behavior||Increased alcohol or drug use, reckless driving, unsafe sex. Taking unnecessary risks as if they have a “death wish.”|
|Sudden sense of calm||A sudden sense of calm and happiness after being extremely depressed can mean that the person has made a decision to commit suicide.|
Here are some misconceptions regarding suicide from SAVE – Suicide Awareness Voices of Education:
Common Misconceptions about Suicide
FALSE: People who talk about suicide won’t really do it.
Almost everyone who commits or attempts suicide has given some clue or warning. Do not ignore suicide threats. Statements like “you’ll be sorry when I’m dead,” “I can’t see any way out,” — no matter how casually or jokingly said may indicate serious suicidal feelings.
FALSE: Anyone who tries to kill him/herself must be crazy.
Most suicidal people are not psychotic or insane. They must be upset, grief-stricken, depressed or despairing, but extreme distress and emotional pain are not necessarily signs of mental illness.
FALSE: If a person is determined to kill him/herself, nothing is going to stop them.
Even the most severely depressed person has mixed feelings about death, wavering until the very last moment between wanting to live and wanting to die. Most suicidal people do not want death; they want the pain to stop. The impulse to end it all, however overpowering, does not last forever.
FALSE: People who commit suicide are people who were unwilling to seek help.
Studies of suicide victims have shown that more than half had sought medical help in the six months prior to their deaths.
FALSE: Talking about suicide may give someone the idea.
You don’t give a suicidal person morbid ideas by talking about suicide. The opposite is true — bringing up the subject of suicide and discussing it openly is one of the most helpful things you can do.
Source: SAVE – Suicide Awareness Voices of Education
The website http://www.helpguide.org/mental/suicide_prevention.htm also gives us a great deal of info on what we can do and what we should not do. Too numerous to list here.
There is always a way out of your despair, just talk with someone… Please!
God’s Peace to all!