Saturday, June 26, 2010

Choosing Suicide

Suicide rates are on the rise for more than obvious reasons.
One of which is the current world order which is in a current state of collapse.
People are being crushed by quakes, swept away by floods, drowning in oil spills, losing life savings,  homes, careers, family members, income sources, marriages, their health and family members.
Retirement for many will be forced, for others, there will be none.
Painkillers and tranquilizers intended to sooth the rough edges pour salt in our wounds.
Alcohol has seeped into blood streams;  meth, crank and crack are the new black.
Experts are saying, drugs and the collapsing house of cards we call our world, have contributed to the startling increase in suicide rates.

Run the stats for yourself.
I just did.
Soldiers, farmers, fishermen, college students, police, teenagers, every demographic segment shows an increase.
In Private Investigation, suicide comes into play because insurance companies tend not to pay out death claims on suicides until the requisite policy time period has passed.
Those who kill for insurance money are well aware of that.
And some of the people who commit suicide intentionally make their death appear to be a homicide.... so they can either save face and/or enable their families to collect on their policy.

I believe today's high suicide is not due to primarily to illness as it used to be.
It is due to to emotions run rampant as a result of a collective, almost communal world-wide terror...
a feeling that the big sleep is better than the big pain.... emotional or otherwise.

So I am writing this today before I head out for two reasons.

First, I  signed up yesterday with a service that tracks blog readership and found one of my most read posts was the one about Mr Chen, the Chinese guy and the Suicide Bridge. Here's my bridge to that one: This way to: Suicide Bridge Story

The second reason I am posting this is, last week, someone told me her best friend killed herself.
I did not know the woman who died.
As my friend showed me her dead friend's picture from a happy time, someone I never met, I noted inner and outer beauty with a tough Harley edge.
It was the edge that did it.

She  used the finely honed edge of knife and cut herself  vertically, wrist to up arms and across neck.  That is serious, messy, permanent and I imagine, painful business.
So when my friend told me about her friend's suicide... how could we not discuss both the pain her friend must have been suffering.... and her method of exiting the land of the living?
I could never imagine  going that way.
What statement was the person ending her life making by choosing the Freddy Kruger exit plan?

One of the problems of being one of my friends and/or family members, is the innumerable, intrusive and invasive questions I shamelessly ask on a daily basis.
So I went into full inquisition mode.
Why did she kills herself at 37?
And why that way?

My friend told me her best friend was gay all her life and proud of it, so she didn't think it figured into the suicide equation.
She had recently broken up with her girlfriend though.
Then she was laid off her job along with 23 other people.
And shortly after that, her mother, who unconditionally loved her, was hit head on and killed by a DWI.
Her father had walked on the family when she was just a baby, so it was just her mom and her once her girlfriend left.
Despite all the money she inherited from mom's insurance company, my friend's friend still filleted herself with a knife and bled out.
She had no life insurance of her own. So the inheritance from her mom  was donated to a list of social causes she carefully laid out in a will she did herself  a week earlier on

There were not lot of people at her memorial service.
My friend counted maybe 20, she said.
Evidently, many consider suicide a sin and choose to make their own social statements by not attending a memorial or funeral.
To me, that's a crock.
People kill themselves when the pain of living becomes too great.
Just because your life is bearable, does not mean someone else's is not.
Just because you are strong of will, character, or a religious faith that prohibits suicide does not mean others have the attributes or upbringing you do.

I believe people who commit suicide are not cowards or chickens.
They are real people in excruciating physical or emotional pain you and I can not fathom and they choose to end it.
It is ultimately a choice.

It is for this reason, and to honor the unnamed woman I just wrote of....
that I am posting an important link here for anyone who gets so so low, they feel they can't take it anymore.

When I was a much younger, I volunteered for a suicide prevention telephone hot line.
I talked a few people out of killing themselves.
I failed on one. Heard the gunshot over the phone.
So I get the concept that any one of us can feel so trapped in the quicksand, escape appears futile.
The more you struggle, the deeper you go.

Yet, I also know there are ropes you can toss the sinking.
There are ways out for so many.
Because I also believe, the actual moment you are about to commit the final act...
is the moment you can convert that decision to die into one to live... with the right words.
Just know, when someone's mind is made up, truly made up...there really may be nothing you can do.
So blaming yourself is futile once you've tried everything within your means.

I have sent this link to others who have told me it has helped.
I pass it on to you now.
Just bookmark it.  Print it up. Keep it your purse or tool box.
And when someone you know needs help, the kind beyond your ability to deal with....  this is something you can give them.
The page  was "provided as a public service by Metanoia, and is dedicated with gratitude to David Conroy, Ph.D. whose work inspired it." 
Suicide Prevention Page:

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