About a lucky man who made the grade, \
And though the news was rather sad
Well I just had to laugh
I saw the photograph
He blew his mind out in a car,
He didn't notice that the lights had changed
A crowd of people stood and stared
They'd seen his face before
Nobody was really sure if he was from the House of Lords
Beatles, A Day in the Life
For some reason, I always heard those lyrics as describing a suicide.
|Not a pet cemetery|
About the picture to your right. They try to make them look like parks, but these are really dreary places to visit.
Huff Post quotes the father: “No words can express the anguished grief we feel right now,” Warren wrote. “He had a brilliant intellect and a gift for sensing who was most in pain or most uncomfortable in a room. He’d then make a bee-line to that person to engage and encourage them."
He tells me that he knows he will kill himself one day, as sure as the sky is blue.
Six months later I get a call from his wife that he has finished the job. I am startled, surprised, upset, and very, very sad. This was a pleasant man, a likable person. Surely he could have done something wonderful with his time on this planet, even if was some kind of volunteer work. But he is out of his pain, finally, is what everyone will say.
We can say, "Not on my watch."
And they can say, "Why not?"
And we have to find reasons why.
Maybe there is something we can do about it to slow it down, for this wave of youth killing themselves does seem to be an epidemic. We need to call it what it is, let’s talk, self-inflicted murder, no different from homicide except that the one pulling the trigger is the most obvious victim.
To call attention to the problem we should support suicide awareness, visit AFSP's website. We can join in on their walk, donate. AFSP, the American Federation of Suicide Prevention, could use money to promote their anti-suicide campaign. We should make it our anti-suicide campaign.
Taking a walk to draw attention to a cause is a nice idea. Good people do this.
There's something else we must do. We have to counter the forces of death on the Internet. I feel it is a Star Wars mission we're talking about. We are the Jedi.
If you aren't aware of this, you should know that there are websites that feed vulnerable, depressed kids step by step instructions on how to kill themselves. Here, where we are at this moment, people give advice on how to die. Go ahead. Open a new browser and Google: How can I kill myself? You'll fall off your chair there's so much advice out there. Sites share specs on lethal doses of poisons with anyone who asks for information. I imagine they teach rope knots, too.
This upsets me, that the Internet has become the Wild West, a dangerous place, because I like to shop here. There is nothing quite as amazing as Amazon, or useful as a university database, or Hulu. This is a wonderful place, cyberspace. A few rotten apples. Right? No. The tip of the iceberg.
They have to be shut down.
Suzy Gonzalez was a child.
Hear her story.
Her parents are grieving, her friends and teachers are, too. And it is clear that Suzy had much to offer. People who are very much still alive who say they've been there and respected her wishes to end her pain, persuaded her to hide away in a Florida hotel room and take cyanide.
They told her exactly how to do it so she would make no mistake. Hers was a copycat suicide. They coached her, told her over recipes to die.
Recipes for suicide.
Is it possible that bloggers like me, bloggers like you, or just readers with Google circles or Facebook pages, Tweeters, any one of us, might participate or better, start a chain, post the reasons that suicide is a very bad option, all things considered? I'm not technologically savvy enough to know how to do that, but some of you are.
Feel free to cut and paste.
Why suicide is a bad idea.
(1) There's an agent for everyone. We have new and better medications. Be patient. There's one coming out at a pharmacy near you soon.
(2) Brain research and the fields of psychology and neurobiology are exploding. There may be a cure for depression, a laser, a surgery, who knows? Think about it. One day, zap. You're better. Things are likely to get sunnier if you wait it out. Study up on these things. Learning anything makes you feel life is worth living, too.
(3) You are not bad, not evil, not the source of all that is wrong in your life, your world, the universe. The world will not be a better place without you, no matter what the relentless, unceasing voices in your head are telling you. This is as wrong as 2 plus 2 equals 1 to think that you MUST do this, totally irrational, the thinking of a sick mind, a mind on psychosis It's not about you, frankly.
(4) People love you, so you can't do it. You don't have this right, no matter what anyone tells you. People love you and if you believe in God, that Higher Power does, too. She has declared all forms of murder out of bounds, even yours. We don't mess with God, but it's not just God. The people who love you will really, really hurt if you kill yourself. It is one thing to feel pain, quite another to give it to others. Wait because you probably do have love inside, although it is surely fogged over by disease. But you loved and you will continue to love at least someone, or something, and others love you. Love is ephemeral, holy, and all that is good.. Why lose that?
(5) Tough it out because you are already in the process of change, you can't not change. Our cells change over every day. Our moods can, too. We have so many ways in therapy to accomplish this thing we call affective change. Pay attention.
(6) Change your therapist if therapy isn't working. This should be obvious, but it isn't. A new set of eyes on you is refreshing. Therapists all get a little boring after awhile.
(7) You haven't even tried aging yet. It's not so bad. Age a little, give life a chance. See what is in your future. It will be better, you'll see. And how can you not want to know the future? Seriously.
(8) There are things that only you can do, no one else can do them, and these things have to be done.
(9) There are things that only you are. Nobody else will be the uncle that you will be, or the aunt, or the mother, the father, the daughter, the son. These are unique jobs, very, very important ones.
(10) We need you. We need a new poster child every year, at least one every year, someone who comes out to the world and tells young people: Wait! It really is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. They weren't kidding! I waited and look at me! My picture is on a bus!
We can't judge people like my friend who moved away and did what he said he would do, as sure as the sky is blue, although his wife always will, or the Matthews, the Suzy Gonzalez's. They really didn't know they had a future.They were convinced, in fact, to the contrary, that life would not get better. But Suzy scooted around her neighborhood in a plaid skirt and green tennis shoes. And Matthew helped others as soon as he sensed their discomfort. A girl like that, a boy like that, knew how to make others happy. We can't afford to lose kids who suffer from depression. They get happiness on a level that no one else ever will.
So why then? Why do they do it? Sure there's pain. But I propose that they lost that tiny sliver of affect that kept them alive, the one we think of as love, that very positive emotion. We need it to stay alive, need to love something, someone, and we're not talking romantic love, here, rather a sense of connectedness. Friendship will do. For some, a hobby.
On Suzy's website the people who loved her wrote:
Suzy Gonzales was a bright girl who needed to be reminded of the good things
in life, not encouraged to end it. At the time of her death, Suzy was the 14th confirmed
suicide associated with this particular site, they claim 24 "successes" today.
I'm so sorry for her family, and for Matthew's, and for all of you who have lost someone to suicide.