Selfishness of Suicide

For people who have never truly wanted to kill themselves, never truly sank to the depths some of us have then they will find it very easy to judge us out of their own selfishness and self indulgence. People who commit suicide are not selfish, they are hopeless. They have decided that ending their own life is the only escape. The only escape from the void, the darkness, the pain, the numbness, the mind eating disease that resides in their cranium.

To be in a state of wanting to kill yourself and hearing people call you and people like you selfish only causes you more pain. And to anyone who has ever said that suicide is selfish I ask you one thing; how can you be so sanctimonious in your own abhorrent selfishness?

If a Formula 1 driver dies in the car nobody refers to him as selfish, he is a hero. If a soldier dies in combat, he is not selfish, he is a hero. Now both of these people, the driver and the soldier were acutely aware that death is an occupational hazard, yet they did it anyway. But for some reason society has it deemed it acceptable to die in a fiery wreck on live TV for the chance to win a trophy. Society has also deemed it acceptable to send young men and women to foreign countries and be killed in the name of a jingoistic government.

These are very cynical views, I am a massive F1 fan and I have unending respect for soldiers. But the point is made this way to highlight the disgusting views spouted about those who judge those who are considering suicide.

Unlike the driver and the soldier, the depressed person has no choice. They don’t enlist. They aren’t trained. They aren’t given a high velocity rifle. They don’t get glory at the end of the race. And sometimes the battle never ends until they die. Yet they are put down. Nobody has ever said of a depressed person who killed themselves ‘They were so brave to fight for so long’. They get called selfish.

We need to stamp this phenomena out of our society, the idea that it is okay to berate suicide victims or those contemplating suicide. The driver chose his battle. The soldier enlisted for his/her battle. Mentally ill people are chosen by their illness and battered every waking hour of every day with no training or ability to return fire. People with mental illness, mood disorders or emotional issues are the biggest heroes our society has to offer, they should not be fodder for abuse or judgement.

You do not help the potential suicider by berating them and making them feel even worse for being alive. Grief is an inherently selfish thing. We don’t grieve because that person won’t live any longer, we grieve because we will miss them. We grieve because we won’t get to speak to them again. They are dead, they are perfectly content. Your grief is totally selfish. And that’s okay. You are allowed to be selfish. But you must recognise when you are being selfish.

When you call people who commit suicide ‘selfish’ you are basically saying that this mentally ill person should put the feelings of every one else in their life before their own. The very thing the loved one who is judging them isn’t doing for them. Imagine a mentally well person expecting a mentally ill person to put the needs of others ahead of their own needs, when they’re suffering! It’s the very thing the mentally well person isn’t doing for the ill person!

If your friend had a broken arm and you called them selfish for not helping you carry the shopping bags you are a grade A dick, and the whole world would agree. Yet it’s perfectly acceptable to expect a massively depressed person to put the needs of others ahead of their own. Amazingly, if the very people berating the depressed person put their arm around them, listened, didn’t judge and tried to help them, that person may not in the end take their own life.

Suicide is not selfish. It’s a bloody tragedy. A preventable tragedy. So be there, listen and stop being selfish. It may save a life.

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