Compassion Needed for the Suicidal

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My mother-in-law recently sent me this article, “Compassion Needed for the Suicidal,” which provides a new perspective on suicide. I wanted to share this article with our readers. What I love most about the article is the perspective it gives on suicide and those who have died by suicide. So often in society we hear that the act of suicide is a choice. Suicide is viewed as a selfish act, as it leaves behind family members and loved ones asking themselves, “What could I have done?”  What we as a society fail to acknowledge is the pain and illness that lies beneath our loved ones final act – the depression, anxiety, fear, and belief that the world will be a better place without them in it. Mental illness and how it is viewed in society is another topic that I could spend hours writing about. I often think about what might have been, if my father felt that he was able to get the help he needed without being stigmatized by society.  The below article briefly addresses this notion, and comes from the desk of a religious figure. I hope you find it as comforting as I did.

Compassion Needed for the Suicidal

Comments

  1. CJ Moylan says

    ” I often think about what might have been, if my father felt that he was able to get the help he needed without being stigmatized by society. ”

    So true. We must stop stigmatizing “mental illness” as a society – I know my companion was afraid of being seen as crazy by others, and afraid of the process of therapy and what it would stir up….he thought if he opened up, he would be locked away….not rational but that is the point, isn’t it? We need to reassure those hurting that the help is in fact available, affordable and effective, and okay.
    It is such a complex issue – I often read that the suicidal have no choice and that is both true and not quite right either…they are not thinking in the same way as those of us who make it through a day and night …. it is not even really about choice but more of a compulsion, I have read.

    • Jessica says

      CJ, I couldn’t agree more. The options in our society are so limited for the suicidal. I also feel that it is specifically more difficult for men, as we live in a society that has consistently taught them that showing emotion is a sign of weakness. We must get to the root of the problem, which is ending the stigma surrounding mental illness. Once a person gets to the point of strongly considering suicide, it is often too late. The suicidal need to feel like they are able to obtain the help they need when the depression first begins; not when the pain is no longer manageable. I do hope that this blog, and the voices of other survivors will assist with ending the stigma that exists.

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