Suicide is usually the result of despair and the belief that nothing can change.  It is the ultimate I’m not okay/You’re not okay life position.  Nothing feels good about how you are or your situation in the world.  This, coupled with the belief that nothing can change, can lead to a belief that suicide is an option.  Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem and the big downside is its very permanence; make room for other options.

If you are feeling suicidal I urge you to seek help.  Nothing is permanent, not even when you have a terminal illness or have been sentenced to 20 years in prison.  Time and perspective change even the most trenchant of beliefs.  Suicide is often the product of depression and this can be addressed if help is sought.  Trite though it is, “All things come to pass.”

I am not of the belief that you do not have the right to take your own life but there are so many other options available and suicide is usually a poor one, chosen in despair and under duress.  Many people who have contemplated suicide find it very hard looking back later to see why they would have taken that option.  There is a particular mindset that takes hold where we convince ourselves that this is the best choice available.  Often we don’t let others know what we are thinking as we do not want to be dissuaded from our planned route.  How many other life changing decisions would you take where you would not run it past a couple of friends and maybe an expert or two?

A quick dispatch is not the only kind of suicide.  There is the slow, ugly, descent towards an ignominious death that comes from alcohol or drug abuse or sabotaging behaviour such as drink driving or extreme neglect of the self or continuing to live with an abusive and dangerous partner.  These behaviours need addressing in the same way as they are indicative of despair or having given up.

Please let someone know how you are feeling.  Shame goes with suicide; there is no shame in feeling this low; it often goes with some form of mental or physical illness and is a symptom, not something you can control or decide upon.  I believe that when a human contemplates suicide their mind balance is altered, where rational thought and reason are unavailable to them; after all it is usually the case with humans that we strive to stay alive at all costs.  I urge you to talk over this enormous decision, to feel the impact it would have on your nearest and dearest and for you to realise what you would be giving up.  It may be the more courageous and harder route but there is always another choice and that involves facing your demons and deciding to live.

Remember that if someone you know or love commits suicide, that this is an act that has nothing to do with you and everything to do with them.  I don’t mean in any way to belittle the impact of a suicidal death on the nearest and dearest but to state quite clearly that if someone is intent on taking their own life then they will find a way to do it regardless of any interventions or lack of them.  Often people contemplating suicide are in such an unbalanced state that the people they love are left out of any deliberations that they have.  Many people who contemplate suicide truly believe at the time that their family and friends would be much better off without them.

If someone close to you, particularly a parent has committed suicide, perhaps you need to talk this through with someone in a professional capacity.  If left unexplored and unresolved this can infiltrate and distort almost every aspect of a vulnerable person’s life—if this sounds like it might be you, get some professional help. 

To sum up: thoughts of suicide are not "your fault."  They are often a product of some unbalance in your system, either mental or physical or both.  Suicide is the "end game"—there is so much more to experience and it is too permanent a solution to a temporary problem.  Please seek help.  Tell your family, tell a friend, tell your doctor, tell anyone but do not stay silent and end up choosing to have the worst option there is—no choice at all.

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