Monday, June 1, 2015

"...and lose the name of action"?

If the act of suicide is beyond the control of the one who commits it; if, the brain chemistry and the level of general befuddlement (from whateve cause) is something the person in question simply had not the means to prevail against, how much benefit is there in making this clear to the public at large?

I will leave questions for you to either ponder alone or below, or in the hallowed halls of Facebook, because I am not committed to an answer. I have no answer, but I have that most blessed of growth-promoting problems: doubt; indecision. 

I understand wanting to remove a stigma from fallen folks like, say, Robin Williams and from loved ones who have taken their own lives. Still, is it better to downplay the helplessness and to place even a possibly incorrect level responsibility on the fallen person? -- maybe leave just a sprinkle of the blame that suicide once carried? 

Does the "raising of awareness" at any point become an inducement or even an excuse for self-destruction? If a suffering soul hears someone say that those who slid knife across wrist did so because they could not control their actions, might that same suffering soul falsely identify him or herself at "that point" and -- just perhaps -- more easily succumb to the temptation to end everything? 

Your thoughts on this particular question would be very welcome. As I said, I have not full conclusion in mind...


  1. I think we should always regard suicide with empathy and compassion, but stress the futility of what is, to quote, "a long term answer to a short term problem". Younger adults need to realise that all things pass and that today's all-consuming heartache or disappointment will be an embarrassing memory in ten years' time.

    I'd like to hear more from people whose suicide attempts failed and how grateful they are that they didn't succeed.

    In the case of debilitating illnesses, I wouldn't presume to advise anyone what they should or shouldn't do.

  2. One thing I forgot to say is how important it is to take the glamour away from the suicide of the young - all of that nonsense about Peter Pan and never growing old may be well-intentioned, but it turns it into an artistic act. I'd counter it with a video showing all the holidays, family memories, fun evenings out etc that will now never happen.

    1. Steerforth -- I once read an article by a man who had jumped off of a bridge and survived. He said that until he jumped, he was committed and convinced and that the second he was falling, he thought, "What have I done? Please God, don't let me die." I suppose, for obvious reasons, it would be hard to compile a list of similar experiences but I am willing to bet it is, if not constant, at least very common. That, of course, says a lot about suicide as a solution...