I’ve heard it said (many times) that suicide is selfish. That it is a permanent solution to temporary problems. Every time I hear that, I just want to say, “fuck you.”
Unless you have been suicidal, you have no room in that house. And if you have been suicidal, and you say that, I say unto you, “That’s great, and I’mma let you have your opinion, but fuck you, too.” How you feel about your own thoughts, impulses, and issues is your own life, and you don’t have the right to tell anyone that how they feel is wrong for them.
I’m not saying you can’t have an opinion. I’m an American who actually does believe in free speech, even for ass-hats (and I’m including myself in that ass-modiste’s shop at this very moment). But the fact of the matter is that your opinion is just that; your opinion.
By no means am I saying that you should ignore someone in pain. If you worry for someone, of if someone comes to you, do listen, do talk, do something. That person deserves to know that someone loves them, that the loss of them would be painful to this world. Make them understand that they are useful and needed in some way, that it can get better.
My grandparent, a former counselor, told me that when someone is suicidal, the best thing you can do is give them project after project, assignment after assignment. My grandparent managed to coax dozens of people through their immediate pain and allow them the time to heal through this technique. I employed it on myself to the best of my abilities for quite a while before I finally had my brake down in college.
But the fact of the matter is that sometimes, a person is going to make the decision to leave this life. It is horrible, and painful, and often feels unjustified to those left behind. The anger and resentment can linger, torturing the good memories we have of that person. But in the end, it is not our decision to make for that person. It effects us, but we can’t control those thing that make a difference in our lives.
While many people can work through the issues that make them suicidal, not everyone can. And sometimes those issues are impossibilities to overcome. Terminal patients should have the right to have their lives end with dignity and respect to their own wishes. And frankly, depression can be just as debilitating. And I don’t think it is your place or my place to make that decision for them, regardless of how much we may want them to be with us.
I started writing this at work one night. I don’t even know why the topic came to my mind except that I’ve been suicidal several times, and I feel like I’m constantly evaluating where I stand on the subject. I’m not ever going to say that I’m a hundred percent one way or the other forever. I believe in constant change and just because I feel this way today doesn’t mean that I will feel that way forever.
Also, I don’t want to anyone to feel like just because I don’t agree with them that I don’t respect their thoughts and feelings. I’m a huge believer in honesty and integrity and being true to one’s own self, regardless of the circumstances or disagreements that may arise.