Friday, July 1, 2011

Dear Private Eye:

I was laid off my job 1.5 years ago and because this is at at-will state and they said it was my job performance. I am still fighting for unemployment. I had no saving, lost my apartment. I  am flat broke and the only time I get money is when I put up a sign on a street corner. On rainy nights, I  stay in the shelter when there is room.  Mostly I sleep under a tree in a park near the U district. I use internet in the library. I am getting more and more depressed though. I don't feel like eating. I don't feel like looking for a job. I lost my cell phone. My friends have all walked away because I guess I am too much of a bummer to be around. My  father is dead, my mother called me a parasite. My girlfriend dumped me right after my employer did. I am single, have no kids, I am 34. And I can't remember the last time I felt even close to  being a human being.  I want out of this life. I am thinking more and more about suicide, the Big Sleep. It's got to be better than this. Any suggestions?

Signed, "Hopeless"
Dear Hopeless,

I realize this sounds corny and the last thing you need is is one more platitude, however, "where there's life, there's hope."
Once you commit the big S, Suicide, there is not life, there is no hope.
The amazing thing about life...and hope... and the universe... is it is ALWAYS the darkest before the dawn. And you NEVER EVER know how a story will end unless you decide to end it before you let it play out. Which I do not want you to do.
You are not alone in your unemployment, your homelessness, your despair. You are aware we have the highest foreclosure rate in history? Unemployment numbers have risen above the stratosphere and  are still rising.
Somehow you found you your way to this  little blog. You sound both literate and resourceful.
There is a reason why you are here.
So may I suggest you not give up? Don't check out.  Not Yet.
There is still life in you, a spark, so there is still hope.
May I, urge you...  to knock on every hospital ER door,  walk into every homeless city encampment, contact every crisis prevention line, call every suicide line, walk into any mission, shelter, church, even the police, crisis clinic, you name it... and keep at it until one person... that's all it takes... one person...extends a hand. Sometimes, that person is a stranger who might just be a friend you haven't met yet. Other times, one simple call for help to a family member you haven't talked to for eons turns into karmic cog that  can moves... even rocks... your world.
I think there are viable  reasons people choose to exit life early. The horrific quality of their life, due to extreme illness/relentless pain is one reason.
However, you are still alive, kicking, albeit seriously depressed.
You are capable enough to find a place to lay your head at night and somehow you wake up every morning. That's a start. Just try to stay away from the booze and drugs even though you may think they offer you comfort and help you forget. They are a depressant. And ultimately, they could contribute to a suicide before the cavalry has time to arrive.
Our society is much more understanding these days about situations like yours.
Think of yourself on a Spirit Quest, knock on every door you can, speak to everyone you can. Someone, I am convinced, will see in you what I see in your letter. Hope and Promise.

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