Robin Williams, death by suicide.

As a survivor of suicide I know there are times I am more sensitive to the subject. However, yesterday I was so very angry! It had been building and as much as I ignored the media the first couple of days, it finally caught up with me. What am I angry about? The ignorance (not knowing) that surrounds suicide. The people who don’t value human life. The mean, judgmental comments. And just plain emotional, hurt and angry!

I realize I was ignorant to much of suicide prior to our son’s. However once again, I find it unbelievable what some people think it is okay to say. Do people not have a filter? I am sure they do, they just need to use it. For those of us you have lost someone to suicide, you know all too well what I am talking about. Again, I was reminded of a person I use to work with who could sleep at night because she would say whatever she thought and got it off her chest. Yes, some people are that selfish.

Comments, they are just words -right? Yes, but words hurt, especially when someone is already down, barely crawling through life, trying to grasp the reality of it all themselves. And who are we to judge anyway? Do we know what that person was thinking their last hour? Do we know the conversation they had with God those last 30 minutes? Do we know the despair, the pain, the struggles they were going through? Do we know their mental status at that point? Obviously, they were not thinking logically. Studies have been done and show that a person who attempts suicide does not want die. It is truly heartbreaking when you stop and take time to really think that through -to be so out of options that death seems like the only way out. Cowardly? I think not.

Robin Williams was a man who loved to make people laugh. He was a tremendous actor. A man who hid his own depression from all of us extremely well. But isn’t that the case many times? Over and over I have heard stories from survivors of the smile and humor their loved one had. How many hide behind a mask? How many are so giving and strive to make others smile, despite their own emptiness? Weak? I don’t think so.

To live with depression, mental illness and the stigma surrounding that keeps people so closed about it requires enormous courage and strength and selflessness. Depression can manifest from all sorts of underlying medical issues too.

Christians can be depressed too. It is believed David and Job were depressed at times. Were they demon possessed? No. And of course there was Judas. Judas a “friend” of Jesus. Judas reacted to his feelings on his overwhelming remorse of his sin. It was good he was remorseful, but not good that he let his feelings (emotions) take over and allowed himself to react acutely to them. Then there is Peter. Have you ever wondered how Peter felt after denying Jesus three times? After Jesus’ resurrection, he made sure to see Peter. That gives me comfort knowing Jesus cared so about Peter still.

I don’t want to over fantasize, exaggerate or give the impression that suicide is good. It is clearly not. I do want to make these points.To those who are so very cruel and strike out with your words toward such people I say,

  • You are the coward for not standing up for the depressed or suicidal.
  • You are the weak one for hiding behind your arrogant thoughts and harsh words.
  • You are the selfish one for not thinking of others.
  • You are also the lazy one for not researching before you speak.

Yes, maybe you were the ignorant one, but no more. Now is the time to lay aside ignorance, to quit being lazy and become educated.

A couple great resource can be found at http://ww.afsp.org or http://www.sprc.org.

 

 

 

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