Why Prevent Suicide? Here Are My Reasons.

 “If someone’s life is so awful that they want to die by suicide, why stop them?”

I am frequently asked some variation of this question, even by mental health professionals. Once, a therapist told me about a client of hers with schizophrenia. “He is miserable, and he will always have schizophrenia. I think letting him kill himself is humane.”

I am passionate about suicide prevention. My stance often draws the ire of people who think that people should have the right to end their own life without interference by well-meaning others.

To my mind, there are many reasons to stop someone from suicide. (I am not, by the way, including “death with dignity” or “hastened death.” That’s grist for another discussion.)

Before going into those reasons, I want to make clear that I don’t take intervention lightly. I don’t call the police if someone discloses suicidal thoughts. I don’t think people should be involuntarily committed to a hospital except in the most extreme circumstances, like if someone has a gun in their car and tells me they are going to shoot themselves when they leave my office, without any desire or will to come up with an alternative (like, say, having someone hold on to their gun for them). I consider myself to be a therapist who doesn’t panic about suicide. 

But I do believe that therapists should never give up helping a suicidal person to stay alive. The most important reason to prevent suicide is that suicidal crises, though formidable and painful, almost always are temporary. Even if the person continues thinking about suicide, the intense suicidal intent usually subsides. Consider that 90% of people who survive a suicide attempt do not go on to die by suicide. That number is very revealing. Even among people who wanted to die so strongly that they tried to end their life, most ultimately chose to live.

As long as a person is alive, things can change for the better. Situations change. Even if their external situation is unchangeable, they may discover things that make their life worth living. There is always the possibility that they may find ways to cope. Or they may come to appreciate different things in life. They may even find a purpose in life that gives their loss or trauma meaning.

Kevin Hines is a suicide prevention advocate who, years ago, jumped off of the Golden Gate Bridge, the site in the U.S. with the most suicides every year. Death is almost certain when one jumps from the bridge. More than 1,500 people are known to have jumped to their death, and only 30 or so are known to have survived. So when Kevin jumped from the Golden Gate Bridge, he was absolutely intent on dying. And yet, even with that intention, the moment he jumped off the bridge, he instantly regretted his decision.

His experience is one of many (including my own story) that illustrates that the wish to die is fluid. It comes and goes to varying degrees. A great many people who are saved from suicide are thankful, sooner or later, to be alive.

Another important reason to prevent suicide is because, proponents of rational suicide notwithstanding, in almost all cases suicide is decidedly irrational. Research consistently indicates that 90% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosable mental illness at the time of their death. Mental illness distorts thinking. What is bad can seem good, and vice versa. Often, very often, when a person’s mental health improves, the wish to die goes away.

Some people contest the high estimates of mental illness in suicide. Even if we presume the 90% figure is correct, not everyone who dies by suicide has a mental illness. Other things besides mental illness can also distort one’s thinking, such as substance use, sleep deprivation, and trauma.

When people address these issues, they often join the legions who seriously considered suicide or made an attempt, and who many years later live to tell about it.

Revised on May 30, 2017, this post was originally titled “If Someone’s Life is So Awful that They Want to Die, Why Stop Them?”

© Copyright 2013; 2017 Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW. All rights Reserved. Written For: Speaking of Suicide. Photos purchased from Fotolia.com

 

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  1. Anna Smith says:

    What about people suffering from terminal illnesses or in unbearable physical pain where it is clear it will never get better?
    Should their suicide also be prevented?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Unfortunately, people commit suicide because they have been manipulated by someone they love into believing in a relationship that the manipulator never intended on following thru with.

  3. I’m 85. During the past 30 years, or more, I’ve been through, at least, several bouts of severe depression. Each episode would have a duration of weeks. They
    always caused me to be unable to function. I couldn’t work, eat, etc. Fortunately
    my wife and place of employment understood or were very sympathetic about
    my illness. I finally began to see a therapist. I was and never have been suicidal.
    Of course my mind has pondered it but, I’ve always known suicide is a choice I
    could never choose. My father had episodes of severe depression that seemed to
    last for several days. As he got older they seemed to have ceased.

  4. LydiaS says:

    Suicide prevention is a sick joke.
    Consider the legislation being passed in the USA currently regarding late term and postnatal abortion.
    I suppose it’s now morally sound to murder a newborn baby, but I as an adult would be considered a pariah and a criminal for attempting to off myself.
    Abortion clinics are a matter of civil rights but euthanasia clinics are too taboo to consider?
    What a joke.

    • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

      It’s a joke where nobody laughs, except the person (Government) telling it.

      I suppose it’s because Governments don’t want people to start actually dying when they can still be productive. If too many people start opting-out, then that could lead to an unacceptable loss on investment.

      The fact that there are people suffering horribly, who are a huge burden on society, is irrelevant.

      Nobody must be allowed to die when there is risk to investment.

      It doesn’t matter at the early stages of life, as Government investments have not yet commenced. I wouldn’t be surprised if infant euthanasia were an option seriously considered, but then not for adults or teens, and then considered for retired elders.

  5. src says:

    I do not believe the stats of mental illness to suicide. I believe they ‘label’ people with the mental illness to justify or make people ‘think’ that …. see, thats why. The person was mentally ill. Because it is more scary to let people hear that…. no this person just wanted to die because of whatever was going on. That they really thought it out, and came to the conclusion this was the only answer.

    I’ve tried … really tried.. once in 2015 I OD’d when my wife said she wanted a divorce after 24 years married 26 together. She told me when i called to say goodbye to .. ‘if you get help, we can talk’…. i found out later that she lied. But i believed her and pulled over, went into a gas station and told them what i took.
    The next time was 5 months later when the divorce went through. I was going to jump off a bridge in MN. This time police called her from taking my phone. They said to me she wants to talk to you. She told me if i got down and got help… we would talk.. not for sure get back together… but talk. So i did. IF SHE WOULDN”T have lied. i would be here right now.

    Let me make this clear… I DON’T WANT TO BE HERE.. its been 3 years now. NOTHING has changed. She is my life.. her and our kids… but thats all gone. kids too. So i am ‘labeled’ with depression and mental illness. NO.. i don’t want to live without her. And one day… one day… hopefully sooner than later….. i know it will happen. (yes i see a psychiatrist, and tell him all the time and like you.. thank gosh he hasn’t committed me… He said same as you. so i don’t tell him i have a plan or he would.) i am on a ton of meds.. and he even said.. these meds won’t help you. Sorry this is getting to long… point being Three people know what one day will happen. i am over 50, and being with my wife for over half my life.. if that is all i get…. im okay with that. i had a GREAT life with her.. even through our issues and ups and downs… i had a great family… and i hope one day they will remember all the things i did and we did together.

    The prob i think we should look at… is if people really want to die… after really thinking, and analyzing… and making sure they are not ‘really mentally ill’… something should be done to help them. and not punish them more if they fail, they end up being arrested in jail.. or locked up in a mental hospital.. making everything even worse than before…. I mean it isn’t right for people to force others to live because of their way of thinking and what they believe. That ‘THEY’ know best… WRONG… you don’t know what i feel and whats going on and the hurt and unbearable pain and misery and heartache a person is going through. Sometimes.. the hard fact is.. LIFE ISN’T WORTH IT ANYMORE… to some.

    im sorry this was sooo long… but this is now a major hot button to me… ITS MY LIFE… I SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO END IT…. and not be punished or locked away…. WE KILL BABIES BEFORE THEY ARE BORN… with no punishment… that has a heart beat and fingers etc.. and wants to live… IT MAKES NO SENSE…

    thank you for listening…

  6. Valtteri Kiertomäki says:

    Personally i never have really cared about living or dying
    i do not have mental illness or depression for me it has just been so that in case
    if i were personally to do suicide i would do it if i was hurt, i have lot of different medicines that would easily result in overdose, but even then my last trouble im having currently was pretty much solved 3 days ago so im not even planning in suicide, but there’s that when i live alone i might only for one reason
    i would kill myself if i didn’t have any interests in life or something was painful enough to make me even lose my interest to live to be able to read books
    because my faith is this, when person dies it was decided by faith and by god
    and when you die it was your fate and you could have not escaped
    thus i care not about life and death, it is one of the things i least care of .

    i was googling about “love is war” and was given this link i was not intentionally looking for this thread or anything suicide related.

    Valtteri Kiertomäki – Helsinki, Finland

    • Daphne says:

      Hello Valteri,
      I am a sufferer of anxiety and depression and still to this day I feel very tempted to tend my life it’s such a struggle, I haven’t attempted suicide for twenty years, life is a constant trying to bring me down,my faith in God, has helped me a lot, I was given lots of gifts, but if I ‘m not good at my first attempt to try something new I give up, I feel this is very selfish attitude, and hoping to overcome it,
      we all are individuals and suffer differently.

      I must fight my feelings even if its unbearable I have to realise this is abeautiful world the beautiful animals,plants, and scenery.
      Daphne

  7. Ash says:

    People lead other people to do stupid things they should realize when to stop, sometimes they just need help not fucking jail time

    • Devin says:

      Real help cannot be received, for his/her concept of reality is not real, as indicated by others. Tried for help didn’t work, life imprisonment didn’t go as expected. Sent to a mental hospital where inaccurate and most incorrectly dignosed.
      Almost killed by a corrupt officer!
      Help…

  8. Gukshatuk says:

    What about people who become old & feeble or who suffer from extreme pain! Or who have no knowledge of god or a supposed hell that waits, & why is god never around when you have no one to turn to & how come evil people rule the world and the poor starve to death.

  9. A.B. says:

    Stacey, I’m what you might call a lurker of this site. I’ve been reading these comments for years but haven’t commented because I think the future of the suicide debate is already being decided. Polls around the world and in the US show a very significant majority of the population favors governments allowing people the freedom to decide on the matter of suicide. This is in stark contrast to the feelings of governments themselves and mental health professional boards. This curious divide amounts to governments and professionals deciding what is best for the individuals even when the population increasingly disagrees on this matter. Though slow, legislation in the US and around the world is nevertheless slowly changing.

    I really respect that you have your perspective on suicide, both as a professional and as a survivor of depression (I’ve read your article elsewhere about your own experiences here and am happy you are feeling much better today). What I don’t understand, though, is the anti-suicide justification of “life is inherently uncertain.” That is an apparent truism. It doesn’t justify forbidding doing anything else that may be irreversible and potentially extremely negative–like investing your entire life savings in a risky business venture. People make all manners of risky decisions that statistically lead to very bad outcomes but we don’t prohibit them from doing these things on the grounds that life is uncertain. I don’t see any logical reason why the case of suicide must be different.

    I agree with most of the many, many commenters in your articles’ comment sections who overwhelmingly advocate for freedom of decision. It’s not just a self-selection bias that so many people in your comment sections are pro-suicide. This perspective has become increasingly popular if you look at many reputable polls. While you personally don’t have to subscribe to it, what’s frightening is what many of your commenters and many others elsewhere have honestly reported: that the government empowers others to restrain and treat people against their will who don’t want to stay alive. To the expected reply that some such people later express gratitude about not having been successful in their attempts many published scholars have pointed out that the impracticality of long-term follow-up of these patients, and other factors, obscures drawing reliable conclusions.

    I don’t think anyone would have any problem that professionals or others advocate what you do here if the rest of us were still free to do what we want (meaning we had available safe, reliable, affordable means to do what we decide is best for us). But when both the government, with its unlimited powers, and mental health professionals (either directly or indirectly empowered to decide about people’s freedoms) are so staunchly and uniformly against people’s exercise of free will regarding our own lives, this only contributes to the emotional anguish of many, forcing them to hide their feelings and intentions instead of seeking help–if this is even available to them. As a survivor of a brutal involuntary commitment that ended my professional career, I can tell you that both the fear and realities of these forced commitments can be unsurpassedly terrifying. Again, others of your commenters and many people on other forums report the same.

    People who are ambivalent about suicide or who very much want help should have access to caring, supportive mental health workers. But unless we can give people what they need–nurturing homes, truly affordable education, fulfilling jobs, healthy environments in which to live, emotionally fulfilling companionship, a reliable and available legal/justice system blind to impertinent characteristics of those who need its protection, access to sound health care, freedom from physical and mental pain beyond what sufferers are willing to tolerate, and enough capital and other life resources research around the world shows directly impacts self actualization and contentedness, it seems unforgivably unjust to force those who have none of these things or who are in unremitting pain even after years or decades of various official treatments to continue to suffer. And there are many with extreme political power who demonstrate these are often not the objectives of the global/national influencers. The very facts that we can’t effectively treat everyone, despite laudable intentions, and that it is not or can’t be government’s intention to provide for people’s contentedness ought to temper our insistence on usurping others’ personal autonomy.

    I’m not attacking you or anyone else who is anti-suicide. I respect everyone’s right to their own opinions AND their right to act as they feel is in their best interest without bringing direct harm to other beings. I wish anti-suicide pundits would extend the same dignities to their ideological counterparts. As someone else in your comment section has already remarked, we are not free if we can’t even make this decision about our own lives and our own bodies.

  10. Alan Fay says:

    You are so so so spot on. I wont pretend my pain is as bad as yours, or at least everyone’s is subjective, but the way you think is exactly as I have. I am so understanding of this comment you made, (I continue to seek answers and cures that are not yet implemented and won’t likely ever be available to me.)

  11. Anonymous says:

    Just a question on the off chance the author of the above article may read this. I don’t mean to be morbid, that is not my intent at all but, are you aware of any situation, aside from illness and coercion; where it is clear and maybe even obvious the only logical course of action would be to end ones own life?

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Anonymous,

      No, I am not aware of any such situation. What might seem logical to one person is likely to seem illogical to another, and maybe even to the same person at another time. Life is inherently uncertain. That is, people may think they know what the future holds for them without truly being able to know. Or they may make pronouncements about themselves or their life that are actually distorted by the filter of depression, trauma, or other stress.

      • mic says:

        I don’t understand why choosing to end one’s life is “illogical”. Deciding to remove onesself from suffering seems to be a logical way of responding to a situation where one finds the suffering not worth tolerating. You can say that life can change and they may be relieved of suffering later on without dying; but if you’re dead, you will not be deprived of enjoyment of life. So it’s not at all clear why just writing off your losses and opting out would be illogical.

        Or at least, even respecting that you and many others have a different perspective, it doesn’t make sense why anyone should be able to proclaim that it would be such a manifestly illogical choice that it would warrant the government intervening to prevent someone from exercising that option.

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree

  12. Susan says:

    Prolonged, extreme and agonizing pain distorts thinking. Why must I be subhuman? Where are the marching to raise money my disease? Why am I sub-human? This article is written to an audience with a third grade. The pain I have suffered for a decade has crippled me. If there were a cure, and there is it would be available only for the very elite. I can’t take morphine and I’m Christian, so I can’t take my own life. I apologize. My pain is extreme and incessant. I lack patience with those who talk down to me. I’ve been abused, discounted and re victimized enough and my belly is full of it. I add to my own dilemma when I continue to seek answers and cures that are not yet implemented and won’t likely ever be available to me.

  13. Kayla says:

    How to deal with suicide when moving back with parents that makes it worst specially due to stress. I’m trying not to stress what they stress knowing that some responsiblities I could have done but being in college without work due to credit hours is so important to me specially when I have 3 more classes left to get a.a. after this semester. I can only do 2 classes at a time due to my learning disability. We have also have different opinions too specially with food where I just eat junk food at night and some during the day which is hard not to do specially when someone continues to criticize which makes eating worse along with stress. I have been dealing with anxiety/depression for years now and did not realize that suicide can come with it when I was so close to it in 2017. I do think about it occassionaly but more so now due to stress bc of my parents opinions specially not working due to college

  14. Chris says:

    I’ve hurt the person I love the most in the world. She’s my support system. 1 of only 2 people in the world I have for support and I’ve done this to her. I’ve ruined lives. I feel hopeless. Nothing seems to matter anymore. I come to work. I talk to people. I pretend to laugh at things. All I want to do is lay down and wither away.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Chris,

      The guilt and hopelessness you feel sound extremely painful. I hope that you are getting help for your emotional state or will do so soon. I can’t imagine that killing yourself would help your wife recover from the hurt you say you’ve inflicted. It would probably cause her even more pain.

      If you want to speak with someone immediately, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. They also can help you learn about resources for mental health services in your area.

      I list some other resources, too, at SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp.

      Help is available and there are treatments that can help you regain hope and come up with solutions to your problem.

      Thanks for sharing here!

  15. Dorothy says:

    I am suffering from depression,there is force which force me to commit suicide,it comes and goes and I don’t know how to control it,I want to get better but it seems like there is no solution nor hope for me

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Dorothy,

      I’m sorry you’re experiencing depression and suicidal urges. I truly hope you are getting professional help, as treatments are available that help many people.

      You also can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or use one of the other resources listed at SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp.

      Please take care!

    • Brittany Odle says:

      I dealt with suicide so many times my only hope is Prayer, please try it.

    • Kayla says:

      Dorothy, definitely find help who you can feel comfortable with. I used to have EAP to have 8 sessions each year for counseling which helps a lot til I moved to different state back with my family which made it worse where sadly I don’t have EAP. I do think about it more often since I do have anxiety/depression together and didnt know suicide can go with it. Since I’m back with my family, I dont have anyone anymore where I dont feel all alone. Thankfully college helps me a little to keep me going.

    • Will says:

      I find friendship and/or love help; unfortunately, however, they are, to say the least, intermittent.

      I wish you well!

    • Taunia says:

      I feel the same and want to change but just can’t. I want to give up and stop hurting those I love. Why can I feel sad and guilty and want to not be this way but just continue to be?? I don’t understand I’m tired of hurting others and feeling so lazy and guilty for not being there. So I get it but guess I’m not the one to help

  16. Brian says:

    It’s 2019 every day I struggle with suicidal thoughts. In 1990 I tried killing myself I’m still here there are times I wish I had succeeded. For the last 3 years I’ve dealt with eating problems that no one can seem to help me with. It hurts when I eat – physically hurts me to eat. At times I’ve been down to protein bars to survive. 4 yrs ago I had to serve a prison sentence and 2 yr probation. I have gambling problems.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Brian,

      How painful! You’ve been through a lot. I hope that you’re able to find some relief from your eating and gambling problems. You can always use the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, the Crisis Text Line at 741-741, or other resources that I list at SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp.

  17. ThelifeoftheSaints says:

    I think that people say things that they don’t want to say or to mean. Six years ago, I was really threatened with police if I didn’t go to an emergency room. I went immediately and it was worst. The doctors, the nurses, obliged me to take their pills and the patients were very bad. Only one person told me that please don’t go back to that place. I did have goals and needed help, but it was not the right help. I am learning how not to talk to people about my problems and I have found another way to be my best friend and to depend on God, but my spouse.

  18. nope says:

    Dr. Stacey, I very much love your passion…but if you met me you would run into the wall that won’t tumble. Having been in every form of therapy most of my adult life I have not seen the world in any other way except as a holding cell for the end. I haven’t done it because it is nerve wracking. However, this is not a sliver opening to being happy about existing…I see it as having no reason anyway…being born is to be cursed to pain. In daily life I hide this mindset, but very rarely have I ever felt honest joy in anything…because the truth is there is no point to anything we do…humanity is destructive anyway…I myself am a very nonviolent nor angry person…I just know the truth and the truth is it doesn’t matter…any of it.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      “Nope”,

      It’s sad you experience no joy or meaning in your life. So much of what you write is consistent with what I’ve heard from people who are experiencing depression, trauma, or other challenges. I’m not diagnosing you but raising the possibility that maybe the lack of meaning and joy that you experience are themselves a symptom of a problem, rather than an immutable way of being. Maybe?

      Thanks for saying you love my passion. Not all readers of this site do. 🙂

      Please check out the resources at http://www.SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp if you’d like to be able to talk, text, chat, or email with someone about the despair you describe above.

    • Spencer Wilson says:

      I can see why you would feel there is no point to life I have had sexual trauma as a child. That wasn’t even the worst, try defending your life at your own home and being taken to jail for it. While at the same time being a drug addict who doesn’t want to feel any emotion in life except what the drugs do for u and then people wonder y u have no problem pulling a trigger on anyone when they cross the line. I used to feel homicidal and suicidal towards any one who steps out of line and when I see injustice is make me wanna go gangster on the ones who attack the innocent. But yet I’m the one with the anti social attitude. And yet the only people that hold a place in my heart are Jehovah’s witnesses bc they taught me how to overcome evil with good and the love they show calms the soul like the scriptures say your peace will become like a river and your righteousness.

  19. Annon says:

    I don’t know, to be honest it feels like your reasoning has come after you’ve already decided that suicide is not the answer, as opposed to coming to the conclusion that we should prevent suicide because of that reasoning. Not that that means what you say is inherently invalid, however it makes the reasoning seem so hollow — I don’t believe that you understand why you want to prevent suicide. Maybe you’re just targeting a more specific group of people who are contemplating suicide, but you make the very broad judgement that “therapists should never give up helping a suicidal person to stay alive”, so to me that implies you are referring to anyone suffering from suicidal tendencies (outside of the specific reasons you stated at the beginning).
    Since that’s been established I feel like I can explain my disagreements and personal issues with what you’ve written. I’ve suffered from depression and suicidal thoughts since a very young age, longer than I could possibly remember. The first time I came to the realization that, at least from a logical outlook, there is no defined meaning to life- and claimed that my own life was pointless- when I was only five years old. I’ve had psychologists and psychiatrists throughout all of my life, but my outlook on life and my feelings towards ending it have only just become more negative. Additionally, there isn’t anything about life that has made me feel this way, I’ve had a very pampered and spoiled life. I haven’t grown up rich by any means, but I never asked for much so on the rare occasions where I did want something I would never be disallowed it, and I’ve never truly experienced anyone being mean or hurtful towards me. I’ve never even experienced someone close to me passing away, and have always found ending relationships with friends easy to get over. Everyone in my life has made exceptions for me, warping school rules and even their own morals just to cater for me, and they’ve just done it out of the kindness of their hearts. I’m very grateful for everything everyone has done, but I also have to admit that none of it has ever helped. I’m still more and more depressed everyday. I am actually very self-conscious because I have never been bullied, I feel like everyone sees me as a privileged brat who deserves to feel pain. What all this is leading up to is that I think that it’s not fair for you to tell me that living is worth the gamble. I’m someone who finds a lot of thrill in taking chances, but I have no faith that I’m ever going to be happy. You have said that situations will change, and that it’s possible to discover things that can give enjoyment, but that wouldn’t change anything to me, I’d gamble away the winning lottery ticket before I’d optionally live the years it takes to find something that I enjoy.
    I never been in a bad situation in my entire life, all of my problems stem from just how inherently fucked up I am. I don’t have any hobbies or activities that I enjoy. I don’t agree with any of the fundamental political positions under the world’s available governments. I don’t have anything to strive for in life, and even if I did I honestly don’t get any satisfaction from achieving a goal that’s been set. I don’t even have the opportunity or money to explore the world for something to enjoy. Literally the only times I can confidentially say is a positive experience, is when I’m asleep and dreaming. Then when I wake up I remember that life isn’t like in my dreams, and feel worse because I then have something good to compare my life to. You’re emphasising the amount of people who are happy they didn’t commit suicide as if that’s meant to change the individual gamble people like me have. I’d gladly bet on a 90% chance, however it’s not that simple!
    I want to make clear that I’m not arguing against preventing suicide as a whole, I mean I wouldn’t have the confidence to tell somebody that they should end their lives. I simply just feel so bad for all the people in my life who are never going to be able to fix me, but are still forced to by their own morality. It’s not fair for people to sacrifice their happiness when I’m probably going to end it eventually anyway.

    • Steve says:

      Wow after reading this comment it was like reading someone narrating a big part of my life back to me. I’d have to be dumb to think I was alone dealing with the same issues I wish to talk more with this person “annon” if at all possible and maybe share experiences and coping techniques. I’m saddened this is a real issue others deal with but perhaps something good could come out of sharing each others stories.

  20. Anon says:

    Thank you for this article.
    I am wondering why you feel that “things can change for the better” for people contemplating suicide, or “they may find ways to cope”. I once read that most people commit suicide for financial reasons. Now I find that absolutely logical. After all, if you are unable to pay your rent, the lessor will evict you and you will become homeless. To me this is a fate INFINITELY worse than death. There is a lot of nonsense talked about “things will get better” or “maybe you will be able to cope at a later stage”. How on earth can anyone cope with being made homeless? Do you have any idea of what it is like to be homeless? Do you have any idea what it’s like to be in a situation of continuous grinding poverty? To have to pinch and scrape so that you are able to pay your rent, so they won’t put you on the streets? Never to be able to do anything nice with your pitifully small earnings, like going on holiday, buying new clothes or even new towels, or even postponing buying a new washing machine (which is NOT a luxury but a necessity) and making do with your old one which rattles and groans and dances around on the floor? Every time you run a wash your heart’s in your mouth because the thing may terminally break down. Having to exist in a medieval hovel which should have been demolished decades ago, while you long to move out but haven’t the money. Et cetera. It’s bad enough being poor in a poor country, but being poor in a country where most others are (comparatively) wealthy is sheer hell. So suicide seems the obvious choice, because things are NOT going to get better. And if you think they are, you are shockingly naive and unrealistic.

    [This comment was edited to correct misquotations from the article referenced. Please see the Comments Policy for comment guidelines. – SF]

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Anon,

      Your description of the trials of poverty and homelessness is excellent; I agree that living with such deprivation and uncertainty can cause great pain. I disagree with you, though, that suicide is the obvious choice, and that the lives of people in poverty cannot improve. Though suicide rates are higher among people with low income, the vast majority of people who are homeless or otherwise impoverished do not die by suicide. And a great many people who live in comfort today once experienced poverty.

      I say all this not to argue with you, but to (try to) give hope to others who live in poverty and might read your words. I realize you believe such hope is naive. If I believed that things got better for everybody, then yes, I agree, that would be naive. But things can — and do — get better for many people. That is not merely a hope. It is a fact.

  21. Shannon Nealey says:

    I think it’s rather arrogant for others to take it upon themselves to decide whose pain is worse and who should be allowed to end their lives. So because one person is suffering from a terminal illness and someone else is suffering from mental illness, that means that the pain of mental illness is somehow lesser than that of a terminal illness? There’s all kinds of pain. It’s not for outsiders to decide whose pain is greater nor should they intervene based on their own conclusions and assumptions that one suffering from mental illness isn’t suffering as much as one suffering from, say, cancer or MS or some other terminal illness. Pain is pain; that’s like saying that a woman in labor isn’t suffering as much as the man who was hit by a truck full of hot garbage juice and that is not a good luck. People want to escape their pain and not because of the stigma, but because of the likelihood of someone afflicted with Superhero Syndrome coming to intervene by insisting that the pain of mental illness isn’t as bad and can be overcome and then insisting–forcing, in fact–that one has to stay alive, live against their will. I find it distasteful that one would insist that anyone suffering from mental illness and wanting an end to life to live against their will and continue to suffer and live on in pain. Pain is subjective. Do I get to tell my daughter or son that their heartbreak isn’t as painful because a family member is suffering real pain as they die a horrible death from cancer? Do I tell my granddaughter that breaking up with a friend isn’t as bad as when I broke my foot? Of course not. I validate their pain. They are the ones living with it and they are the ones who decide if the pain is something with which they can live. There shouldn’t be guidelines based on anecdotal evidence because everyone is different. Some people just want to get the fuck out of here and it’s not for anyone to judge them for their decision nor is it anyone’s place to intervene.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Shannon,

      I think you make excellent points about pain, and I agree completely that one person’s (seemingly) worse pain doesn’t make another person’s pain hurt any less.

      However, I don’t think that the laws permitting assisted suicide in the case of terminal illness are there because of the pain of terminal illness vs. the pain of mental illness. Rather, I think it has to do with life already being shortened by terminal illness. In the case of assisted suicide for terminal illness (at least, in the U.S.), the prognosis is that the person has 6 months or fewer left to live. Helping someone to die when their terminal illness is going to end their life very soon, is very different from helping someone to die who could live for decades more.

      Of course, many will say that the person in pain with decades left to live should have the option of assisted suicide, too, to avoid living out those decades in pain. But for now, I just want to address that our assisted-suicide laws don’t discriminate against people with mental illness any more than they discriminate against people with non-terminal physical illness. If the distinction were between mental vs. physical pain, then people with excruciatingly painful, chronic conditions could legally receive assistance for suicide in the U.S. even if doctors believed their illness would not kill them within 6 months. That is not the case. The distinction is between terminal vs. non-terminal conditions.

      • Anonymous says:

        Honestly, that just makes it even more depressing.
        I’m 20, and I’m in a community college, unable to properly handle school, work, home life, and can barely even personally care for myself other than a shower. My long hair has fallen out unevenly due to feeling like everyday life is too hectic and draining to keep up with my hair. I am African-American. From middle school to college I was told things would get better, but it still hasn’t. I’m tortured every day on how people my age can handle tasks enough to stay in a normal college and I can’t even really tolerate more than taking out the trash. That’s a part of my mental illness. And I guarantee that I have more self hate for myself than anyone else around me. I don’t want kids because that would just be pathetic of me to reproduce.
        I’m not suicidal, nor advocate it, but I can understand someone’s desire to if they were mentally ill for so long. It makes me feel bad for those people. The one thing I wanted from people is to not judge me, so who am I to judge them for those feelings, especially if the law doesn’t even properly validate them….

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Anonymous,

        Your situation sounds deeply painful. The self-hate alone can be a form of mental torture, because it can arise with every action, big or small — sort of like having a bully live inside one’s head.

        Are you getting help? There are treatments for the pain and symptoms you describe. Your illness and self-hate need not mean that your current limitations are permanent.

        I hope you are getting help. Even though you are not thinking of suicide, some of the resources I list at SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp also might be useful for you, such as the Crisis Text Line at 741-741.

  22. mimi says:

    I never in my life would have contemplated suicide. Now that is all I think of but I am afraid to go to hell..I am suffering so bad every day 6 months now..with undiagnosed illness which I have nerve damage on the inside of my body. Can’t barely swallow or eat..can’t digest and go to the bathroom. Spine and pelvis are in so much pain..meds don’t work and I sleep 1 hour a night. I can’t take it anymore. My body is shutting down but heart and brain still working well so I’m suffering for a long time. I just want to end it. But I’m a christian and believe in hell..don’t want my situation to be worse than the hell I’m in now. Also afraid of surviving attempt screwed up even more. I don’t want to die. I just don’t want to live like this anymore. Anyone else with a chronic painfull illness?

    • Jomar says:

      Hello mimi, an odd circumstance led me here. Let me start off by stating that while I don’t understand the physical battle that you encounter on a daily basis, I do however understand your mind state and how you are feeling right now. Hopelessness. Hopelessness is a very simple and somewhat long word but it describes and represents a myriad of underlying feelings and emotions. I myself have attempted it twice, been institutionalized for mental illness as well as take daily medication to help deal with depression. It’s a daily battle for me, one that I feel sometimes that I’m gonna lose one day. Right now in my life im very stagnant. I’m 34 years old, living with my mother, with no job, divorced, no car, overweight, and also having communication issues with my daughter who for lack of better words really doesn’t wish to hangout with me or even really talk to me. This is a lot for me to deal with and while the reasons I’m in the position I’m in are my fault, I acknowledge it but it doesn’t make it any easier. I have good days and I have bad days dealing with the emotional struggles of my reality. I don’t know what is important to you in life other than yourself and the belief in God, but whatever it is I hope and pray you hold on to that feeling. Me, about a week ago I started working out and eating better. I know what you’re probably thinking “how is this gonna help me?” The answer is this and that’s control. It’s an important thing in people’s lives and that’s the ability to control certain aspects of one’s life. For me it’s my weight I have complete control over whether I decide to exercise and eat right. It’s a decision that I can make every day and control. This also creates something else for me and that’s giving me something to look forward to on a daily basis. I say all that to ask you to try and find something even if it’s small to look forward to and try to find something that is within your own control and focus on it. Maybe just maybe you can begin to understand how important you probably are and that while the worst situation you can be in is only a hurdle or a roadblock keeping you from your higher and greatest achievements. God bless you Mimi I wish all the best and thank you for taking the time to read this

    • Cory says:

      Mimi

      Have you ever heard of MMS/DMSO or Colloidal Silver? I have read that these can be very helpful for chronic pain and disease sufferers. Here is a facebook group I joined with people sharing their experiences:
      https://www.facebook.com/groups/1656832684629431/

      You should join and poke around and ask questions. I sincerely hope you find something there that can help you. Wishing you the best in recovery.

    • Duna says:

      I am so sorry to hear your story mimi! My heart aches for your pain, but I genuinely hope you gain the strength and hold on. My problem that was leading me to depression is that I was fearful of death and its inevitability, and I personally also don’t necessarily believe in any particular god or religion currently and that only makes matters worse because death, to me, is a dark, mysterious, and scary fate. So this leaves with a constant sense of doom and anxiety. But by the end of the day, I still have hope, I still have a belief in something good, that justice will be served to all of us humans in the end of all this! Please hold on to hope of strength and better times! Again, my heart is with you sister/brother!

      If ever you need a friend or to just vent to some rando, I am right here for you! Just send me an email! 🙂 Please hold on, someone who doesn’t know you at all who’s possibly from somewhere else in the world loves you, respects your courage and patience and is really rooting for you!

  23. Anonymous says:

    If I’m determined to commit suicide why does society feel determined to change my mind. If they want to ask me about it, that’s fine, but if they don’t like my answer society wants to save me from myself, even lock me up and control me in an attempt to change my mind about what I’m considering, I suppose to the point of jailing me forever, or at least until I figure out that if I tell “them” what they want to hear, I’ll be freed to do what I want. Does this fall under anything that resembles human rights?

    • SariGee says:

      I agree tenfold.. i agree.. i’m saying the same thing.. why are strangers so quick to wanna save your life when your friends family and loved ones are showing u they don’t care.. i don’t understand how this is supposed to help me feel better .. it makes me feel worse..

  24. Anonymous says:

    I’m a middle aged male. I’m not physically ill, I’m not mentally ill. I’m a religious person, a Baptist, and have been my entire life. I’ve retired from the US Navy, a career I throughly enjoyed. I’ve also had a very successful second career where I’m currently working. There’s an old joke and a song which says “Everyone wants to go to heaven but just not today”. Well, I’ve decided I want to go today. Obviously everyone’ going to die and if heaven is waiting why not go. I wonder why I haven’t thought about this before, and furthermore why am I thinking about it now. It seems perfectly logical to me and I do wish I’d thought about it before now. I’m ready and I’ve always been ready, so what’s the excuse for putting death off. I can’t think of a single reason. Why would anyone want to grow old, possibly sick and or in pain. Society has an ingrained idea that “they” should keep me alive against my will. The law really gums this idea up, and I honestly don’t understand why. It’s my life, I own it, God gave it to me, why must a person wait to go see god. I know I can do this anytime I want but why must the law punish my estate and I’m not referring to insurance.

    [This comment was edited to abide by the Comments Policy. — SF]

  25. Nieman says:

    Why do you wish to stop suicides?

    Are you doing it for the person who wishes to die or is it for you and you?
    Do you even care about the person who is suffering so much that they wish to end the pain?

    You have no right to force someone to endure an awful life.

  26. Dion says:

    Thanks. Now, explain how I keep on living in a City/ State/ Country I absolutely hate? And how do I live in a world where I despise almost everyone I meet, and who I would rather see die than say two words to? Oh, and work 30 hours with more people I’d rather see dead, for a company I would rather go out of business? Oh, and when I’m unemployed please tell me how to deal with a job agency that humiliates me, calls me a liar and constantly threatens to cut off my meagre benefit? I have no friends because I don’t want them. I don’t want to talk to a therapist or take a drug to make me want to live because that would make me a totally different person and the idea of that fills me with even greater self-loathing. My drug of choice is alcohol. I read a depressing thing today. It is difficult to kill yourself with booze. I usually manage a bottle a night. I suppose I will have to up the effort. To keep me living in this damnable world is cruel. I pray to Satan for incurable cancer.

    • Anonymous says:

      I want to reply, I want to tell you everything I think and feel. But it just may not be real, just a distorted reality. Corrupt police and government impersonating texts, emails, comments, (possibly whole fucking blogs). Who I think…. who I hope and wish for you to be is most likely just another trick implemented to to to. To fuck with me some more!
      But on the off chance, let it be Chrons, an Ulcer, Cancer, or whatever else you can think up. I’ll still be here. The memories, are what keep me going. As much pain as they cause. They’re the only thing that bring me hope for the future.

  27. Miles Miles says:

    We don’t even know if life is actually worth it or not. It’s just a value. So you are essentially enforcing a value onto someone based off of feelings. Rather than caring about quality of life you people tend to care about quantity. Why do you just assume everyone is better off of alive? What about when you “save” prevent someone from dying and they constantly and considerably regret living for the rest of their life. Is that still a win? Is your judgment just superior to their own?

  28. Anonymous says:

    So your only reason is that the wish to die is fluid? Why does that make it better to live? I can’t come up with any reason why life is valuable, regardless of how decisive someone is about their desire to live or not to live.

    Take Kevin Hines. He jumped off the bridge and changed his mind in the air. Why does his newfound desire to live mean that he should live, or that it would be better for him to be alive? What difference does it make if someone wants to live or if things get better or not? I don’t see how the whim of an individual at any given moment lends itself to a value judgement about living.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Anonymous,

      With respect, I’m confused by your logic on a number of counts. My confusion is best illustrated by making a minor change to your wording, as follows:

      “Why does a newfound desire to die mean that he should die, or that it would be better for him to be die? What difference does it make if someone wants to die or if things get better or not? I don’t see how the whim of an individual at any given moment lends itself to a value judgement about dying.”

      See the problem here? If it is meaningless to want to live, then it works in the other direction, too.

      Maybe you’d say the distinction is that the wish to live, in the case of Kevin Hines’ example, came suddenly. I suppose you are arguing (though I’m not sure) that an impulsive or “newfound desire” to live is meaningless, because it’s “the whim of an individual.”

      However, if that is your argument, the logic still leads in favor of living, because in the entirety of one’s life, the desire to live almost always has been present more minutes and hours than a desire to die.

      I don’t think wanting to live is meaningless, though. The fact of the matter is that the overriding forces in nature, when it comes to living beings, human or otherwise, is one of generativity and survival. This doesn’t mean that every human or other animal needs to procreate or to honor the fragility of their life. But it does mean that the forces of life are on the side of health. If this were not the case, people would choose to die even when happy and healthy. So far as I know, most – if not all – do not.

      Have I understood your argument correctly?

      I hope that life changes for you and you are able to feel better it — even to find value in it. I know it’s terribly painful not to be able to do so.

      • Chad N says:

        I believe the intent was more along the lines of: Why does one person (Kevin Hines) changing their mind about suicide mean anything to whether others should be allowed to decide they want suicide? That is just my interpretation but I admit I am reading between the lines a lot. Hopefully the original poster will clarify.

      • mic says:

        I think what anonymous means is that the anti-suicide campaign places an inordinate amount of weight on fleeting feelings of wanting to live. So that even if a person spends most of their time wanting to die but that is interrupted for even a brief spell of time; the temporary will to live is considered to outweigh the strong desire to die.

        People who are in favour of preventing suicide at all costs would usually aver that it’s the fleeting will to live that someone might experience mid-air whilst falling from the Golden Gate bridge is what reflects their ‘true’ desires after having spent most of their time with false thoughts generated by their ‘depression’ which, no matter how much time their thoughts are taken up with the desire to die, is never accepted as being representative of the person’s ‘true thoughts’.

        And of course, even if the person never experiences any relief from the persistent desire to die, people advocating suicide prevention will be unfazed in their contention that the desire to die doesn’t represent the person’s true thoughts.

        So I think that what anonymous is saying is that the weighting that you are giving to the temporary remission of the compulsion to die is arbitrary. I know in my own case, that it’s the rational and analytical part of my mind that drives the desire to die (which isn’t really characterised by periods of emotional distress or volatility); and it’s the fearful primitive instinct that always carries the day and keeps me living. People don’t commit suicide without having a compelling reason for doing it; because every biological instinct is pulling them back from the precipice. It’s not the kind of thing that one does on a whim, and their mindset in most cases would have to be strongly weighted in favour of dying for them to get to that point.

        In my case, and in many cases, the desire to die has taken up most of my life and I’ve never had any real change of heart on that subject. But the evidence would never be sufficient for pro-lifers to respect that as reflective of my genuine desires, no matter how lucidly and cogently I argue my case.

      • Miles says:

        “See the problem here? If it is meaningless to want to live, then it works in the other direction, too.”

        You missed the point entirely. The difference is the OP wants to leave the descion up to the individual. You on the other hand want to enforce a value-that life is always worth living onto others with the sole justification of feelings .

        “However, if that is your argument, the logic still leads in favor of living, because in the entirety of one’s life, the desire to live almost always has been present more minutes and hours than a desire to die.”

        Even if someone really wants to die survival instinct still exists or a biological desire to live, which you have to overpower in order to die by suicide. – the strongest instinct does not go away. That is like saying becuase someone wants to lose weight they have no desire to eat anything. It does not actually make any sense.

  29. David Crichton says:

    But there is a huge variation
    I have been thinking about suicide for 6 years almost every waking minute. It was following being scammed by a financial advisor and lost me most of my savings
    Since then I have hd loads of therapy and got worse with serious side effects from medication which were life threatening and most recently being nearly killed when I fell from my bike into the path of fast car and then being prosecuted for being suicidal. And now my lovely wife says she’s had enough of my misery and wants to separate.
    I have got progressively worse and see that my suicide will save her the shame of separating from a disabled husband of 35 years marriage and also the numerous friends and church people who try and help, but make me feel worse as it shames me; this I find shameful and humiliating as a previously independant active man

  30. Anonymous says:

    I can’t cope with the decisions I’ve made, why do I make the wrong decisions?

    • Chad N says:

      If you will allow me to answer your question with a question. Is it possible that the decisions you are regretting are only wrong in hindsight? If so then the answer would be you made the wrong decision at the time because it was what you felt best with the information you had available. If however you are doing making a choice that you know is wrong at the time then more information would be needed to allow us to guess but only you can truly know why.

  31. Amey says:

    Nice blog on suicide prevention.

  32. Zoe Tartz says:

    Dr. Freedenthal, first off, thank you for starting an interesting discussion and bringing up some valid points. I want to reemphasize a great point that you made. You stated that, “90% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosable mental illness.” I think this is very important point when talking about why we should stop people from committing suicide. This is because it emphasizes that suicidal patients may lack the ability to make a sound decision, especially an irreversible decision such as death. Decisional capacity is defined as the ability of a patient to make their own health care decisions, based on many factors that physicians use to judge. One could argue that someone with a diagnosable mental illness might not appreciate or understand the severity of their actions. For example, in the study Anxiety Evokes Hypofrontality and Disrupts Rule-Relevant Encoding by Dorsomedial Prefrontal Cortex Neurons, data indicates that anxiety has an intricately selective effect on neuronal activity that supports decision making and shows that anxiety often leads to bad decision-making. So rather than allowing people to make such a permanent decision, possibly without fully understanding its weight, I think we should focus our efforts towards controlling and directing their mental health. Another great point you bring up is that 90% of people who survived a suicide attempt did not die from suicide. This leads me to believe that suicidal intentions, although powerful and painful, are passing. I would be interested in knowing whether there was a correlation between improved mental state or well controlled mental illness with decreased desire to end one’s own life.

    • Abe Bin says:

      Zoe Tartz, I’ve been following this thread since a colleague at my university forwarded specifically the comment section to me over a month ago. I’d like to make a few observations about the points you raise.

      You repeated Stacey’s claim that 90% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosable mental illness. I feel compelled to point out that not everyone who dies by suicide is rightly categorized as a suicide nor, among those categorized as suicide (putting aside inevitable errors of categorization), are there always diagnoses of mental illness. And the diagnosis of mental illness itself has been for decades called into question by leading scientists, physicians, and even psychiatrists. So the accuracy of the 90% figure seems questionable at least.

      You also said the above questionable statistic MAY mean suicidal patients lack the ability to make “a sound decision.” For one thing, I don’t see hard evidence, your mention of the Park, Wood, Bondi, et al, study notwithstanding, that the suicidal are not able to make “sound decisions.” Rather, I see diagnoses and terms defined by observers instead of biomolecular science.

      I also question what constitutes a “sound decision.” Many day to day decisions are made in the context of great anxiety–such as the survival-affecting decisions the poor must make or the decision a woman considering an abortion must make or therapeutic decisions patients must make. Someone in this thread even pointed out that many patients whose decision-making is distorted by serious medical news still retain the legal power to decide whether to accept treatment or not even when doctors are fairly certain not seeking treatment will lead to a far worse prognosis. Culturally and legally we generally don’t inhibit people’s personal freedoms because we disagree with their decisions or believe that their anxiety impedes their ability to make “sound decisions.” For many of us, such a freedom (to make decisions we might regret for the rest of our lives or even decisions that will likely shorten our lives) is at the crux of freedom.

      Others in this thread have argued, rightly, that there is no scientific justification for the term “mental illness.” Illness is a medical term and there should be well characterized cause-effect pathology to justify its use. There is to date no published medical test for or characterization of “mental illness.” This term is decided upon by observers–something antithetical to biomedicine and the sciences.

      Thank you for making clear your motivation: “I think we should focus our (whose?) efforts towards CONTROLLING and DIRECTING their mental health.” This was an exceptionally chilling sentence to me. People aren’t others’ property. It’s very frightening that one group of people should take it upon themselves to control and direct another group of people under the justification of providing for the second group’s benefit. History teaches us that is a dangerously slippery slope. I’d argue instead that we should focus our efforts on building the kind of society global epidemiological research tells us is associated with greater prevalence of the feeling of contentedness. When people can’t afford to survive, face homelessness and harassment by law enforcement for the simple “crime” of being poor, endure all kinds of physical and emotional violence without reliable legal or social recourse, anxiety and, when these problems are chronic or combined with advancing age, chronic health problems, community abandonment, and the loss of autonomy, even suicidal thoughts are more likely. If we can’t help such people–really help them by getting them safe and healthy homes, jobs that get them out of poverty or that build futures they want, relief from physical and emotional pain, legal protections, and sufficient companionship and affection, we have no right, I don’t think, to consign them to keep living sub-human lives.

      I also question the second 90% statistic. 90% of all people who were once suicidal are reliably followed up with? For how long? How are researchers certain they’ve included everyone who was once suicidal but then didn’t commit suicide? What about reporting bias? There’s a lot of literature that shows people feel pressured to say they feel well even when they continue to suffer significant discrimination and other major social negatives.

      You also say “this leads me to believe that suicidal ideations … are passing.” Again, for the reasons given just above, I doubt the accuracy of this judgment. As others in this thread have offered, surviving but not choosing to commit suicide doesn’t mean someone judges the quality of their life to be fair or that they are not still thinking of suicide, even when they report otherwise (Krieger, Harvard).

      I’m a big advocate of therapy. But when it evolves into people controlling and directing others’ bodies and lives, that’s no longer freedom. It’s very, very frightening especially since this controlling and directing often means physical restraint, forced drugs and the long-term painful consequences of many of these drugs, lost legal freedoms, and unfortunately being the possible victim of some unethical mental health practitioners. I think that model would deter many people from talking about or seeking help for problems.

      Sorry for a long-winded comment, but there are just far too many torturous examples in human history of control and direction begun with good intentions which nonetheless turn out very badly for those who’re supposed to be protected. A lot of suicidal ideation could be abated if people had more of the things we humans seem to need to be cognitively healthy. I vote for changing society, making it gentler and more supportive, not for controlling others. And certainly not for controlling others WHILE our culture is as caustic as it currently often is.

      • Jim says:

        I have been following this thread for quite some time now and this is perhaps one of the best responses yet. Abe, you very clearly defined the problem. With a suicide rate that is continually increasing and the amount of people on record suffering from major depression, I see no end in sight unless we change the way we are living.

    • Chad N says:

      Zoe,

      I am actually going to point out my issue with your premise by agreeing with it. Expanding on your fundamental claim that a person with a mental illness lacks the right to decide for themselves I suggest that any person that can be shown to have any mental condition definable as abnormal have all their decision making rights revoked because their “Decisional capacity” is in question. After all every decision made effects the rest of ones life, including their death, and decisions are by the nature of time just as irreversible as death is unavoidable. I am of course assuming the subject making said decision is neither a time traveler nor immortal. The issue being of course that there is no such thing as normal outside of mathematics and everyone can thus be seen as having some degree of abnormality and therefore no right to make a decision in their own life. An exaggeration of your blanket statement for effect I admit but I hope it highlights the issue with trying to oversimplify such a complex topic let alone claiming the authority of “controlling and directing” another mind irregardless of if they want you to.

  33. mamoun says:

    first answer me which is better for us life or death ? then i will answer you which is better to prevent or allow suicide ?

  34. mamoun says:

    for a long time now i was following the article why prevent suicide ? the answers are widely different even i shared my own opinion before but i concluded at the end that there is no definite answer to this article unless we answer the question which one is better death or life ? we know life but we do not know death ,so let us first answer what is death and what is there after ? depending on this answer we can decide which is better for us and hence to stop or to allow suicide

  35. Den says:

    I can’t shake off the feeling that a person who “saves” another from suicide surely must then have some kind of responsibility to make the said person’s life worth living. Isn’t it irresponsible to deny somebody their right to die when you can’t offer them any more than “well most people feel better eventually”.

    I have “saved” four people from suicide in my role as a Mental Health practitioner. One of those people did indeed thank me several years later, and went on to live a ‘normal’ life. The other three, however, did not. I saw them over several years (almost 12) come in and out of the medical unit I worked in.
    The statistics may indeed claim that 90% of people who attempt suicide do not eventually die from suicide, the implication being that they do not wish, or do not attempt, to do it again. I can categorically say that the three people I prevented from taking their lives did indeed want to attempt it again, and one actually did, only, because they were now recognised as being suicidal they had little opportunity to do it effectively.

    These three people were never anything other than thoroughly despondent, and one actually told me that I had no right to save him if I didn’t know how to make him want to live. I couldn’t defend myself, I completely agreed with him.

    As far as I know, I saved one person’s life, yay, good for me, but I also imposed life on three other people who did not want it, and who, for the 12 years or so I knew them, would have given it up in a heartbeat if they had had the opportunity. I still feel responsible for their misery to this day.

    • Chad N says:

      Den,

      I for one appreciate that you have considered this question. Most don’t and I believe that is a result of who they are “saving” the life for. If it is for the benefit of the one being saved then yes I believe you would have to at least believe you can help their condition. I think most people don’t want to prevent a suicide for that reason. More often it seems objection is based externally to the object of the action. Sometimes their deity supposedly requires it lest they be deemed bad for not trying. Sometimes their own fear of death simply makes them uncomfortable when confronted by it. Sometimes their occupation financially rewards the act, see “job security”. Whatever the reason, I rarely see any remorse or consideration for the effect on the other party. They seem to think their work is done by forcing their will upon another and when confronted with the aftermath I typically hear what amounts to blaming the other parties for their own misery i.e. “They just didn’t do ‘x’ enough.” I’m sure most people can fill in that x from memory.

      I don’t expect it will help but I do want to say that if someone were to “save” me I would prefer they be like you. Just the fact that they struggled with the question you asked would help me forgive them if I didn’t improve on my own.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Den,

      Thanks for sharing here. I’m intrigued by the points you raised and have some thoughts:

      If 1 out of 4 people you “saved” is glad to be alive and living what you call a normal life, then why isn’t that enough? The other 3 always have the option to die by suicide later. In contrast, the decision to die would have been irrevocable for the person whose life you saved.

      I also wonder if you believe that physicians, nurses, and other helpers are responsible for the care of people whose lives they save from heart attack, stroke, and the like. If no, why not? If so, why?

      Just some food for thought!

      • Mia Cooper says:

        I think Den made an excellent point that this article is saying “people are eventually going to stop thinking of suicide”. What of the pain they have to suffer till? You may think it is not your responsibility, then what makes your right to speak of suicide and people with suicidal thoughts that way.

        Den did not have a choice as to not save the patient, but what of the 3/4 people who survived. Stacey, you are already discarding the opinion of those people, already treating them as dead, what gives you the right to say “they can kill themselves at later date”?

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Mia,

        Thanks for your comments. I appreciate the opportunity to see where I didn’t communicate myself clearly, and to try to be clearer.

        It’s actually not my belief that everybody who is suicidal will stop thinking of suicide. To me, the goal is not necessarily to end suicidal thoughts. If that happens, great! But it doesn’t always happen, in which case the goal is for people to craft a life worth living and relate differently to their suicidal thoughts – to not see them as an edict but, instead, as data about their pain and about changes that need to happen in their life. Or, even, to see them just as a cognitive habit formed from years of thinking of suicide and to observe the thoughts as an event that happens; this is all consistent with mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and acceptance and commitment therapy.

        About the 3 in 4 people who survived when Den intervened and wished they hadn’t: I did not communicate myself well. My point is that death is irreversible; delaying suicide is not irreversible. It’s a fact of life that people can die by suicide later. It’s also a fact that many people – sadly, not all, but many – do change their lives, want to live, and appreciate being alive. The latter fact is one of many that keeps me going in the work that I do.

      • Chad N says:

        Dr. Freedenthal,

        I have several items to respond to and will endeavor to do so in a clear manor:

        1) I find your assertion that 1 out of 4 constitutes “enough” somewhat intriguing myself. I was curious if I could find anything that might indicate the raw effectiveness of a placebo. What I came up with was from an IBS study which stated “an open-label placebo still produced a placebo effect and was about 20% more effective than no treatment” published in the “Harvard Health Letter” on April, 2012. This was from a “small study” per the same article but I expect more than 4 people. So the interventions being discussed produced a reported positive effect 25% of the time and if the study I found is to be believed a known placebo could reasonably be expected to produce a positive effect 20% of the time. However the placebo has no negatives while the intervention does in the form of forced additional medical treatment, social shaming and worst of all the decreased access to their chosen means of treatment. It is my understanding that if a treatment can’t be differentiated from placebo and bears with it significant negative side effects then the medical field typically doesn’t use it. I am not saying we need a Futurama style booth but I do feel 25% isn’t enough unless society can remove those side effect. They have done this in other countries as I am sure you know.

        2) Yes, medical individuals that “save a person from heart attack, stroke, and the like” are responsible for the care of that person after the condition. I say this because if for example person is treated for a heart attack and immediately after stopping the arrhythmia it is determined the person can’t pay so they discharge the patient then the hospital can face legal action should the person have an immediate reoccurrence or other complication. Furthermore, the heart attack patient can refuse treatment and die if they want but that right is taken away from the suicidal person out of hand. The issue, I believe, is that heart attacks are short term, depression/suicidal ideation is not and can in fact be permanent. I would assert that by this president to provide for equal rights either a medical practitioner that intervenes in a suicide has an obligation to alleviate the condition or the patient has the right to decide to die just like the heart attack patient.

        3) I honestly believe fixing the problem should be the only goal. If that be via some treatment then great, if mindfulness helps then great as well. My issue is with acceptance/commitment therapy as if there is no ability to refuse I see no logical difference to Stockholm syndrome beyond the reported intentions of the captor. Yes, people can be mentally broken and made to accept a horrific life but that doesn’t mean they should have to. If they have no means provided to exert their will then they are at best indentured servants to their caregivers. At worst I dare not say.

        4) This is in response to “death is irreversible; delaying suicide is not irreversible.” First, death is unavoidable so why not let people chose how they meet it. Second, delaying suicide can very well be irreversible. The current situation allows a persons right to be taken from them if they are deemed a danger to themselves. They can be put on suicide watches or even committed. Lets not forget the public shaming with people calling them everything from selfish to sinners to weak. To be blunt, I have sought little treatment for my condition because of these very reasons. I don’t want to go into the details but I identified that I had an issue in 5th grade and I truly believe if we lived in a country where I could have sought treatment without risking liberty and my life would have been much better even if I still decided I wanted to end it. Unfortunately we live in a society where delaying suicide can have consequences worse than death. In my humble opinion, advocating for the right to die is truly helping prevent senseless suicides by removing the stigma of the discussion. This board is good but I would prefer to not have to hide in the anonymity of the internet.

        With respect,

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Hi Chad,

        Thanks for your thoughtful, respectful comments. Apologies for my delay in posting it; I wanted to wait until I had adequate time to respond. So, here I would like to respond to your different points, using the numbering you used:

        1. I think you’re mixing apples and oranges by comparing the 25% “success” rate of 1 in 4 people who survive a suicide attempt getting better to a 20% improvement with a placebo pill for irritable bowel syndrome. Twenty percent improvement isn’t about survival; it’s about symptom reduction. In the original commenter’s case, she said she intervened with 4 people who were going to die by suicide, and one of those went on to live a “normal” life.

        2. I was referring to the original commenter’s having said that she feels responsible for the 3 people who regret being alive. That’s why I brought up people who have a heart attack or stroke. Medical professionals who treat someone for heart attack or stroke are not responsible if, through no fault of the professional, the person survives with an enduring disability such as paralysis.

        3. I think you might have a misunderstanding of acceptance and commitment therapy. It is not about accepting horrendous living conditions. It is about accepting the thoughts and feelings we experience while trying to create a life of meaning and value.

        4. I struggle with mental health professionals’ having the ability – not even ability, but obligation – to intervene when someone is at imminent risk for suicide. I recognize that it deters many people, such as you, from seeking help because they fear being committed against their will. My post In Defense of Suicide Prevention discusses my ambivalence about the tension that exists between safety and trust.

        Thank you again for contributing to the discussion, Chad!

      • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

        Heart attacks, strokes, and other physical ailments are not comparable to suicide.

        Generally, people want to survive heart attacks, strokes, and other emergencies.

        When someone wants to die, then the condition is life. Preventing someone’s death by suicide is the same as withholding treatment for another condition (that isn’t hopeless). You would be responsible for their life if you neglected providing care, because your neglect was not what they wanted. You would not be responsible for their life if you provided adequate care.

        Suicide is a traumatic event, and is not as easy as ‘well, he can kill himself later’. That really misses the point, and turns 3/4 people who want to die into fodder.

        It takes a lot to overcome our biological survival instinct, even if life is awful. Even when it is overcome, it is difficult to find information for and carry out reliable suicide.

        It is cruel that a nation would decriminalise suicide, but would prevent access to suicide methods (both information, and reliable and peaceful medications or equipment).

        It is hypocritical that some nations carry out involuntary executions, but will not carry out voluntary euthanasia. (In this case, the person who wants to die has to commit a capital crime before he has the aid of the people in his death.)

        The failure rate from most methods of suicide is surprisingly high, and not encouraging for people in countries without access to firearms or assisted dying / barbiturates.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Andrew,

        Thanks for your comment. I apologize for the late posting and reply. Your comment is thought provoking and, like many other similar comments, prompts me to question my own thinking. (You can see more about that here: In Defense of Suicide Prevention.)

        One area where you and I disagree is with your belief that people who die by heart attacks and strokes want to live, and people who die by suicide want to die. Yes, in the moment, the suicidal person wants to die, but the overwhelming majority of people who survive a suicide attempt do not go on to die by a suicide. (And no, this is not because they were rendered too physically disabled by their suicide attempt to try again. Such profound disability is rare.)

        The suicidal state, for many people is a temporary crisis born of cognitive distortions, trauma, mental distress, sleep deprivation, intoxication, psychiatric illness, addiction, crisis, and/or many other potential contributors. Often, when any one of those problems is resolved, the person does not want to die.

        When I worked in a general hospital emergency room, I saw many people who were 100% intent on ending their life when brought into the emergency room involuntarily by police, but who, once they sobered up or slept a few merciful hours or received the support of family, felt entirely differently. I know that’s not the case for everybody. And I know it can take far more than a few hours for someone to regain a desire to live. But it happens. For many people, in fact, it happens, whether in hours, weeks, months, or years. And for those people, it is the same as if they had been helped through a heart attack or stroke. Their mind tried to kill them, and they survived.

      • mic says:

        Stacey, would you say the same about denying people the right to make other drastic life choices that appear to not be in their best interests, such as dropping out of school early, marrying someone who is not suitable for them, choosing the wrong course to study? What do all of those things have in common with each other, but not with suicide? The fact that people can live with lasting and profound regret as a result of the choices they made concerning those other things, but they will never regret the choice to commit suicide (assuming a scenario in which they had a method that was guaranteed to kill them).

        People should have the right to invest their welfare in their own beliefs at the time, even if it is possible that those feelings could change under different circumstances. All of the choices that we make every day are contingent upon how we are feeling at the time, and how we project that we will feel in the future. In 3 of the 4 cases, how those people did feel in the future matched how they projected that they were going to feel in the future. When they are trying to escape suffering that they find intolerable, and you (physically) force them to continue to endure it without any guarantee (or anything close to a guarantee) of being able to solve their misery, you are torturing them. How many people is it acceptable to torture in order to secure a ‘benefit’ for a minority of people who wouldn’t even feel deprived of the ‘benefit’ had we not frustrated their desires and the desires of those who would never receive that benefit?

    • Anonymous says:

      There’s all this debate about prevention of suicide. Is it right to prevent one from committing suicide or is it right to let them make their own decisions. What about the flip side. What if one person was the driving force behind someone’s suicide.
      Not doing anything to prevent, but possibly encourage suicide, antagonizing an individual to commit such act.

      [This comment was edited, per the Comments Policy. – SF]

  36. John says:

    The big problem though is if you have a mental illness that there is no effective treatment for or don’t have a mental illness.

    I have had a series of very bad events; major financial loss, end of career (as a doctor), serious cycle accident with brain injury, police case and conviction for being suicidal.
    It just seems to get worse every year and I had no problems until 6 years ago, but now seem on the edge

  37. Teresa says:

    While reading this for a minute I didn’t feel so alone I have tryed to take my own life more times then I ever like to say one more recent I regret it more then anything in the world but yet I find my self still thinking I don’t want to be alive anymore really wish people in my life would or could understand what it’s like but I feel like no one ever understands

    • Chad N. says:

      Hello, I hope this finds you as well as possible. I am glad the chat helps you, it does me too on occasion. Perhaps if you regret your attempt then it is best it didn’t succeed this time? That is a question for you to ask yourself not a statement. It was just a thought. All I ever regretted about my attempts was that they didn’t succeed. I still regret that actually. My plan has evolved though, I am trying to get myself to Europe so I can have assistance. I think that will be easier on my parents etc so perhaps it was best my earlier tries didn’t as well. I think I understand just not wanting to be alive anymore. I can’t say I honestly say I believe many people do. I feel trapped, walking a long lonely path which I can clearly see contains nothing of value to me just more sorrow and that ends only in death. Thus to me dying earlier is merely shortening the path. Is that close?

      • Teresa says:

        Yea well I thought I was just hurting my self but I did hurt my kids in the process that only just hurts more then anything in the world but we’re still here for a reason just hope to find it soon wishing you all the best 🙂

    • Brittany Odle says:

      Why do you feel that way. You are valuable Teresa. I love you as a person. Email me we can talk jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com
      Anyone else can write me too. I care for you

  38. Josephine says:

    Why is it negative, bitter, or a hallmark of depression to be honest about the ultimate pointlessness of life? Life is forced upon us by our biological parents. It becomes akin to that hideous quilt gifted by a matronly aunt. We’re obligated to smile and put it on display, even though we detest it.

  39. MeJo says:

    I was searching the net for information on ‘why is it so bad to want to die’ and I came across this page. When I came here I was teary eyed. Yet after reading the comments my eyes have dried and I actually feel ok. I like how people have actually addressed pain/suffering from the sufferers perspective. It makes me feel that my feelings are important. I REALLY agree with the comments that discuss aetiology of suffering. One of the things I notice about people who want to stop people from taking their own life is that wanting to take one’s own life isnt something that comes to someone flippantly or isn’t caused by a small one off pain.

    Many of those people who want to now take their own life, were once actually nurturing, optimistic, deeply unselfish and hopeful people. However; it is their very nature that brought about their suffering. Those in society that have less of the qualities mentioned above often latch on to people who have those qualities. They drain the internal resources of the very people they like. Once drained the optimistic person obviously is no longer optimistic. They’re blamed and left. However being naturally optimistic and hopeful we bounce back and restore our resources. Then the next person comes along. The cycle continues. Family doesn’t attend to our needs (emotional) indeed quite often family leaves us be as we don’t demand much. Yet we still have developmental needs. No one teaches us in our developmental stage of growth the rules of reciprocity or causality. No one protects us. We are left to be happy go lucky.

    Several years pass and the ability to bounce back lessens with each additional fall. We become less convinced about ourself. We doubt our own thinking. We start to look around and notice others who were ‘takers’ and ‘mean’ are actually having a good life. We’re the ones who are suffering. Family gets bent out of shape because we’re starting to ask questions. They don’t like our new look on life. We feel more and more isolated, afraid and alone. We still can’t fully reconcile what happened to our spirit. Were we fake? It gets very confusing. Somehow any loss is no longer a single loss it starts to reflect our entire life. We believe this so much so that within a few short years we are our own self-destructor. We can’t even remember who we were and there’s no one to tell us that ‘it’s not you that’s at fault!’ We’re trying to keep ourselves in tact but no one is on our side genuinely. It’s worse than lonely. It takes all energy to remember ‘they can’t see my thoughts! Keep myself normal!’ ‘They’re smiling at me because they like me, not because they’re making fun of me!’ We know we’re on a dark south path. We can see it. We reach out to family and ask for help. Ask for time out just to get our head together. To help so that it all doesn’t fall apart. Family don’t help. In fact they’re telling us ‘what’s wrong with you?! Why can’t you just figure yourself out?! Why can’t you be like you used to be!!’ There’s no one to turn to. Soon all of the thoughts are starting to seem real and rather than being nice and obliging as always we’re angry and short. People around us tell us ‘you’ve changed, everything ok?’ This feeds into our fears. We become more angry and defensive. This continues until everyone in our life leaves us. Then we lose our job. Then we lose all our money trying to survive. Then and only then the choice becomes ‘jump’ or ‘beg’. We call our family. We plead and beg. We tell them that we’ll be on the street unless they can help. They say yes.

    It takes a near nervous breakdown, actual life ruin for family to say yes. Then they say ‘everything will be ok’. Why does it take this?

    Why do happy optimistic nurturing children end up shattered as an adult. They are latched onto and all their energy is gone. Parents do not teach life skills because the family is too busy depending on the happy nurturing child to save the family atmosphere.

    Suffering isn’t a little thing. It comes from resignation from a life continually bouncing and not having the life skills to help oneself through falls and prevention of falls.

    I wish mental health professionals truly looked within a suffering client. They’d probably find more light in them than a functioning (“normal”) person. The normal person is this way due to having been taught the idea of reciprocity in a relationship and having been taught causality and brought up with consistent and adequate demonstrations of causality.

    Those of us suffering are doing so because we internalise and self blame. We are unaware of our worth and thus have practically begged to be seen or loved. Taking one’s own life is not done so easily. It is the saddest and yet what some consider the kindest thing we can do to relieve the pain. Yet the truly kindest thing we can do is put our needs first. Our caring first. We are not a drain on anyone. We are probably the warmest and kindest people out there. Stay warm and kind to ourself. Learn causality and reciprocity and apply it vigilantly with all dealings in the outside world.

  40. Lee kelley says:

    I get so sick of hearing other people saying it’s selfish you’ll hurting people that’s left behind my question is do you really want me to keep living in hurt and painful depression just so I can satisfy other people’s wants. I call BS on all that I think one has the right to suit themselves .

    • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

      Yes. That’s exactly what people want. To enforce your will upon someone else is only for selfish reasons. However, you have to justify your own discomfort with religion or a vague ‘suicide is not an option’ style argument.

      When it’s someone else, they will shout ‘religion’, ‘life at all costs’, and some will say ‘go ahead and let them die’…

      When it’s a friend or family member, it’s “How could you want to leave? *I’ll miss you.*”

      I’ll miss you… that’s a common theme. Not “I want you to be happy and without pain,” but “Don’t do it… I’ll miss you… it can’t be that bad, can it? What about medication?”

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree 100%.

  41. Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

    “Diagnosable mental illness.” So? Cancer is a diagnosable physical illness, multiple sclerosis is diagnosable… does that mean you should force life upon someone, or that choosing to end suffering is a bad thing?

    Any illness would distort your thinking to want to be rid of the illness.

    Having a mental illness should not prevent anyone from being able to end that suffering. There’s only so much medication can do, if it’s even prescribed. There’s only so much therapy can do, if it’s even available.

    Mental health practitioners admit that there is no magic cure, and few will admit that there are cases that are difficult or impossible to treat.

    Any adult should be given the same compassion and love we give our animals. An enduring and/or well considered wish to die should be helped, not leaving those in pain to die alone and possibly risk failure and even more suffering.

    Religious arguments are completely selfish. They are to make yourself feel better and appear virtuous, and not about anyone else. It is not your duty to ‘save’ someone from religious retribution. It is between him and his God, if he has one.

    • Heber Child says:

      Couldn’t have said it better.

    • Chad N. says:

      Well put. I just don’t believe the majority are willing to listen. I am beginning to wonder if pushback on this, aside from the religious stance you already covered, might be the result of people not wanting to admit they failed someone. Failed to improve the suicidal persons life, mood, etc. In effect they would be endeavoring to avoid survivors guilt. Sounds better than thinking they just discount the pain of another because it isn’t their own.

      • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

        Personal comfort is a major reason, I think. Someone doesn’t want the discomfort of dealing with the death of a friend or family member, so will try to stop him dying, but he won’t go out of his way to help him live, either.

        It is easier to ignore a problem and have a family member live forever, than to give the love and compassion that family member sorely wants… by either helping him live, or helping him die.

        My family are so wrapped up in themselves, I think I only saw them all give me attention the last time I was in the hospital after taking an overdose of paracetamol.

        I wonder how much of Governments’ reluctance to permit assisted suicide and euthanasia is to reduce bad investments. It takes a lot of time and resources to raise a child, and to have a young adult opt out of life is a net loss for society.

        However, the time and resources that go into preventing and treating mental health issues so that they don’t become chronic or resistant to treatment is inadequate.

        “We won’t help you die, but we won’t help you live.”

        When suicide is decriminalised, but the means of reliable and painless suicide are removed, then suicide is effectively still prohibited.

        Religion is an intellectually lazy argument from Government, followed by ‘everyone can get better’, ‘palliative pain relief’, ‘suicide is not an option (for whatever reason)’, and whatever other claptrap Government comes out with.

    • Future physician says:

      First off, I want to reemphasize a great point that Dr. Freedenthal made. She stated that, “90% of people who die by suicide had a diagnosable mental illness.” I think this is very important point when talking about why we should stop people from committing suicide. This is because it emphasizes that suicidal patients may lack the ability to make a sound decision, especially an irreversible decision such as death. Decisional capacity is defined as the ability of a patient to make their own health care decisions, based on many factors that physicians use to judge. One could argue that someone with a diagnosable mental illness might not appreciate or understand the severity of their actions. For example, in the study Anxiety Evokes Hypofrontality and Disrupts Rule-Relevant Encoding by Dorsomedial Prefrontal Cortex Neurons, data indicates that anxiety has an intricately selective effect on neuronal activity that supports decision making and shows that anxiety often leads to bad decision-making. So rather than allowing people to make such a permanent decision, possibly without fully understanding its weight, I think we should focus our efforts towards controlling and directing their mental health. Another great point Dr. Freedenthal brought up is that 90% of people who survived a suicide attempt did not die from suicide. This leads me to believe that suicidal intentions, although powerful and painful, are passing. I would be interested in knowing whether there was a correlation between improved mental state or well controlled mental illness with decreased desire to end one’s own life.

  42. Maio says:

    “Consider that 90% of people who survive a suicide attempt do not go on to die by suicide. ”
    So what? Why are assuming that means the 90% are better off alive? 1) Couldn’t I change people opinion’s on most decisions through altering their brain chem through drugs and brainwashing? 2) In order to die by suicide you have to overpower the strongest instinct it’s not like getting a cup of coffee.

  43. Cass says:

    i feel more and more like a masochist for staying alive. things just dont stop getting worse. it’s tragedy after tragedy and im so tired of the constant suffering. i think my life is really cursed, doomed to pain and despair.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Cass,

      You must be going through many struggles for life to feel so painful. I hope you will consider using one of the resources that I list at http://www.SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp, so that you can connect with someone by phone, email, text or chat who can help you.

      Thanks for sharing here.

      • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

        A link for ‘immediate help’ for someone who is ‘so tired of the constant suffering’?

        The woeful failures of modern psychiatry… which are unaddressed and suppressed… should be realistically evaluated.

        When is suffering too much? Who decides? I agree that psychiatric conditions can lead to impulsive suicidal behaviour, but when it is protracted and constant, despite treatment attempts to help improve mood, then it is a terminal psychiatric illness if it has no foreseeable end date.

  44. TM says:

    I’m sure that if I were to survive an attempt, I might feel somewhat relieved. Who knows? At this point, I’m just numb and feel dead inside. Were I single with no kids, I’d probably end my life as soon as possible. I have no friends and my career is in the toilet. I’m not needed here in a world of billions of people. I wouldn’t be missed. Such is the way. I had a few ok prospects at a fulfilling life, but nothing seems to have gelled, mostly because I’m INCREDIBLY LAZY.

  45. Aaron says:

    It should be a case of being able to buy a £200 bottle of nembutal. That’s how easy and cheap it should be, in fact even cheaper, £100. I can buy it cheaper than that if I were to travel to Mexico or Peru etc. In fact risks of bringing it back to the UK aside it would still be cheaper than, for example Dignitas, to fly to mexico, buy the nembutal and fly back to the UK.

    Once again, despite the fact that we have no choice over whether we come into this world, the choice to leave it is stifled by those who worship money or those who believe a few statistics from Psychological research are the be all and end all. Research and stats by the way that are possibly heavily flawed. That 90% figure for example. I would like to see if the researchers continued to keep track of their case studies to see if they had attempted suicide since? Have they achieved it since? How long a period were the studies conducted over? How many people took part? Every suicide attempt in the world (obviously impossible)? Anyone got the answers to all this for me? No. spouting a few numbers means nothing, absolutely NOTHING.

    The Kevin Hines story is all great and lovely, but it’s one in an ocean that are untold and is not conducive as proof that the person who wrote this article is right and that all regret the decision to attempt suicide. Many, many people do go on to attempt it again and die.

    It really annoys me, these people are as self righteous as the religious crowd who say Suicide is punishable by eternal damnation when in my opinion God/Allah etc don’t exist anyway, neither do heaven or hell, therefore I have nothing to worry about.

    Besides if someone dies they won’t care anyway because they will be no more, they won’t feel pain or loss, they will feel nothing and neither will they care because they will not exist to care. What bliss.

    My reasons for wishing to get it over and done with are many including a couple of losses both recently and in the past year (just under) that I can’t get past nor can I reverse (I think at least, pretty sure though), constant mental struggles that the mental health services are failing to diagnose time and again, despite the fact I am sure I know what my problem is and have told them, financial ruin, not knowing who I am anymore and that’s to name a few. Suicide is not even illegal, yet accessing a peaceful and painless means of doing so is made so difficult it’s unreal. I’m trying to import nembutal as we speak, but it’s proving difficult. I have found a source who will ship a bottle of liquid nembutal to me, from Mexico, for a total of around £400 and whilst expensive in my opinion, it’s a damn sight cheaper than Dignitas and others and preferable to continuing this existence.

    Thankfully there are people like Dr Philip Nitschke of Exit International who believe it is the right of all to have access to a safe, reliable and painless means of exit. He believed it should be the right of all adults who make the decision logically, of their own volition and not restricted only to those who are terminally ill.

    To those who believe these things are temporary, please don’t patronise me. This is my choice and no one else has any say in the matter. How dare anyone try and insinuate otherwise. In the words of John Stuart Mill;

    “Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign”

    Couldn’t have put it better myself. This whole topic makes me so angry and frustrated.

    • Aiah says:

      “Thankfully there are people like Dr Philip Nitschke of Exit International who believe it is the right of all to have access to a safe, reliable and painless means of exit.”

      &

      “Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign.”

      Bravo! Yes, these sentiments–and they are no less valid than the prevalent sanctity-of-life sentiment (rather than any objective, empirical fact)–are becoming more and more popular around the world. There is no “valid” refutation to the assertions above, neither in the sciences nor in philosophy. Every type of counter-argument rests on mere personal opinions that happen to currently be common (though no other popular sentiment is deemed objectively true). Consequently, more governments are recognizing that no other entity (professional, governmental…) should have command over an individual’s evaluation and determination of his/her own life.

      Like many other rights movements that challenged assumptions of right/wrong and, therefore, personal autonomy, this one will win ultimately, too, because there are no good enough reasons for it not to. Religion and psychology and other transcendentalisms simply cannot force everyone to believe the same things, especially in a world that is broadly riddled with corruption and social harms humanity either doesn’t want to stop or doesn’t know how to stop.

      Thank you for being brave enough to speak up.

    • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

      It costs £15 or £20 for a lethal dose of pentobarbital. Maybe £75-£150 for two medical assessments, or one medical and one psychiatric assessment. Some miscellaneous administration charges.

      The expensive part would be the funeral.

      The true cost to society for young adults is a lost investment. Government wouldn’t otherwise care about anyone dying if it weren’t costly for them. For the elderly, really it is a massive cost saving effort… considering Governments import so may immigrants now to try to plug the pension defecits. It’s only fear of public opinion and backlash that they don’t offer suicide on demand for the elderly and permanently disabled.

      Considering Governments don’t want to lose their investment, you’d think they would make more effort with mental health treatment and prevention… giving people medications that work very well (older classes), and not be so risk averse and robotic to take the safest and therefore easiest route for them. (A doctor would rather you kill yourself with your own rope than risk a more effective treatment that you might kill yourself with.)

      Litigation and publicity is a scourge to certain medical conditions, and most psychiatric conditions. It generates risk averse and/or fraudulent psychiatry.

      Good luck with Mexico.

  46. Ellen says:

    This is great. And I respect your position however. I have an incurable Disease which is driving me to financial ruin to the point of choosing if I can in fact continue treatment. I cannot simply because money has run out. I need to end this agony. I’m facing financial destitution. When it’s like this I have to think of more than myself. I cannot leave my family homeless when there is nothing more we can do. I’m over this. I’m the one suffering daily. I’m the one stacking up the overwhelming costs. So no. I’m not interested in help for saving me but help to complete the task at hand.

  47. me says:

    you say you would care but you wouldnt even know

  48. Paul says:

    When someone is suffering and it is growing worse all the time then it is natural to want to go, and that is why Oregon has an assisted suicide law. The thing that makes it good in my opinion is that doctors are required to do something to help with the suffering so that they are given a chance at life. It is the suffering that makes the mind think such thoughts as I should not be here. The same thoughts that most animals have before they die, we even are encouraged to give our pets a peaceful farewell when they are suffering and there is really nothing that can be done to help them any longer. However being the litigious society that we are and also because too many want the government to be their daddy when they are not able to solve problems on their own. People generally suffer needlessly, and there are exceptions for things such as hospice care for stage 4 cancer for those that live in some of the major cities, and they can get high levels of morphine till they decide to checkout on their own. I refer it this way as they are almost gone and just want to spend a last few minutes with someone before they go. However, those that are not close to San Jose and other places with the best of care. Those people suffer the worst. In Russia for example, military people with terminal cancer are not able to get the pain relief due to international restrictions and restrictions in Russia as well. This is a world wide problem, and the best country to die in from what I read is England and the UK, the USA is in the top 5, so is Australia, and New Zealand, France, Switzerland, Canada, etc. Basically the countries that are at the top for use of pain medications. There are some parts of the world were there is no relief from pain other than what is available from drug dealers at a high cost, according to multiple sources on palliative care. This is mostly due to the enforcement of drug laws to stop trafficking in narcotics. Part of the law at the UN was to make sure that there was legal access, but the cost to do that in most countries is prohibitive. It is very difficult in Mexico as well I know someone his mom is going through what I am however I have a good pain doctor helping me, something that she does not have access to. As my wife used to put it (till I lost my job), be careful at work, you know they shoot horses when they become disabled. As in Animal Farm, and this is a good reading about the problems of socialism and over reaching government written by George Orwell. There are many other short books that do give this problem a perspective, and they have unsurprisingly all been written in the last 100 years. Back then most things that are illegal and regulated today were quite legal and easy to get, then came the outlaw of liquor then it all changed for the worst things have been going downhill for the common citizen since then. Just as the old saying absolute power corrupts absolutely. Also there are no checks and balances when it comes to government agencies, they set their own rules and enforce them. Only rarely does congress even question them on the things that they do that harm many. Does Senator Joe McCarthy ring a bell to anyone? He basically ran the UN-American activities committee, and many people lost their jobs and were unable to find work because they were suspected communists, and there were a few but most were not. That really does not matter to the average person till they loose everything because they were called into be a witness in a witch hunt, and then they find out that they are also suspect. That is the out of control war on drugs, it can’t be won… it is a power play where most are the looser, same with the war on terror, it is something that also can’t be won but there is trillions to be made for a small number of companies, and all of us loose our civil rights as a result. Personally I have no fear of terrorists in the USA, as they are very unlikely to kill me or even harm me or anyone that I know. We are more likely to be struck by lightning. However there are some that are targets, and some places that are targets. Basically anything that calls out to foreigners, Corporate America if you were to get a job at such a place you would get paid tax free many times what you could earn doing the same job at home… However you would have to watch your back at all times when there including travel to and from the work site, and also in and out of that country. Usually people that take such jobs are retired military, that are still quite young. They have put in their number of years that they signed up for, and they can go back and earn many times more. As all of those jobs require a security clearance, and that is one of the benefits that people get in the military, at least from all of those that I have talked to with an honorable discharge (while we are taking classes together in college).

    One of the hard realities of the world that we are never told about as children is what the real world is like, and quite often our parents do not even know the most of it, but I will leave that with there are many loosers in any conflict and often it is those that were not even involved. Also determine the source of the message before paying attention to it, as this tell you the slant that they are giving the message, and lastly it comes down to that the only person that you should fully trust is yourself, as others under certain conditions may use what you tell them against you no matter how subtle. This holds doubly true when talking to those that are employed by the government, and above all most people consider most of their work just a job and for the most part are interested in covering themselves for legal liability. However there are exceptions to this, and you will know because they will do things to help you when others will not. Also those most helpful never ask leading questions so they can get something out of you, but are most likely to say not to mention something to others for your own benefit. Also how you appear in attitude is more important than how you actually feel, and this goes along with what someone sees from you in the first 10-15 seconds determines how they actually see you, no matter how false that it really is. Sadly quite often the only person that can do the most to protect you is yourself, and it also helps to know and have a personal relationship with a psychologest in your medical plan as that can save you and your family lots of greif in the future. It also helps to have a good lawyer, as those that are innocent need a lawyer more than those that are guilty of a crime. That is because innocent and guilty are decisions of the court and really makes no difference if you committed a crime or not. That is because it is far easier to get a confession out of someone that has not committed any crimes than someone that has in the past and knows what not to say so they can stay free. As quite often most guilty verdicts do not involve a trial and also evidence that you did not do it is often suppressed. To prove my point look on YouTube for a video called something like “Why you should never talk to police” also “you can’t talk yourself out of a ticket”. The best ones are done by law schools, lawyers, and former police officers. Keep in mind that most police are good, but all it takes is one bad one to ruin your life. I am bringing this up mainly because of the name of the topic here, and you do not want the police to take you away on suicide watch. They will if you are seen as an immediate threat to yourself, and that is exactly why I mentioned most everything that I have. You are in the clear if you say you fear for your life due to your poor treatment by someone or some company etc, and it sometimes helps to say that you have people that will likely die due to they are disabled and unable to function well enough to care for themselves if you are not able to etc. also that you fear for their life. Basically what I am getting at is don’t talk your way into a situation that it takes a team of lawyers and a couple of outside psychologists to get you out of. That being giving a date that you might end your life etc. Those kind of statements get people all the time, and I have heard a read a few. Also as the old saying goes most people will do the easiest thing they can to complete their given task, that is unless they will get paid more to drag it on, and most police during an investigation can and do look for that overtime pay. I know because I have known a few police officers over the years, and also went to school with a few. The agenda is not your safety as much as society as a whole, and as such they look out for fellow officers first.

    • Aiah says:

      Paul, thank you for your detailed comment. I feel most will misread what you’ve shared, but there’s nothing any of us can do about this. I am a board certified neurologist and regularly do psychiatric consults (when behavioral aberrations are likely the consequence of physically identifiable neural pathology or trauma). I’ve posted elsewhere in this and other threads on self determination over the years largely as a counter-voice to the prevalent–and severely misguided, both philosophically/ethically and scientifically–psychological pathology model of mental health. What I express never goes over well and has been strongly censored by members of the professional psychiatry/psychology communities. It is only my standing as a department chair and a well published professional myself that has saved my career from unabashed threats from those who cannot produce any empirically sound arguments or evidence objectively defending their platform of psychological pathology, including their fabricated definitions of mental illness wholly uncorroborated by any rigorous causal arguments the rest of the world of science requires in order to substantiate claims.

      This is relevant because the perspectives and sentiments and values of these psychological professionals are then used to exploit public gullibility (the public largely believes or acts in accordance with what credentialed professionals say) and manipulate laws and policy (so what free citizens can do is circumscribed by the UNempirical, scientifically UNsound pronouncements of a few–despite the blatant conflicts of interest; maybe you’ve read the reports of the recent internal memos from Goldman Sachs about what poor business practice curing patients is). Still, our culture sacrifices personal freedom on the altar of the appearance of ethical responsibility. Never mind that very many of the precipitants of suicidality have their genesis in government policy and the way communities treat the vulnerable. We can’t or won’t change society, so we’ll instead vilify or pathologize those who succumb to society’s treatments, thereby alleviating the rest of us from any culpability.

      People need to understand what you’ve pointed out about law enforcement–that it is NOT there to protect the individual (but rather the State), and that in psychiatric settings, as elsewhere, what one says–HOW one says something–provides fuel AGAINST oneself. Yes, everyone should have a trustworthy lawyer. As much as that’s an apparent oxymoron, it’s also financially beyond the means of most citizens. Which is all the more of a reason for people to protect themselves by not saying things likely to have their rights removed. I have been present in clinic many times when innocent statements by reasonably bereaved patients or family members have resulted in unconscionable incarceration (“civil commitment”). And you are dead correct that it takes boatloads of cash, time, personal fortitude, and exceedingly competent and willing legal help to TRY to undo such damage. Many such victims, including a psychiatric nurse whom I’d known since my own medical residency, find their careers over after a long and costly and bitter legal battle. All because someone said a few wrong words aloud. Talk about the thought police.

      I’ve said it frequently before: psychiatry/psychology have become the modern State-religions. We no longer burn people at the stake for being witches. Instead, we figuratively set them on fire for thinking in ways the rest of us–or more accurately the unreasonably powerful psychiatric/clinical psychology lobbies–deem inappropriate. All this despite our hollow rhetoric about personal and intellectual freedoms. I cannot agree with you more: we must all protect ourselves as best we can at ALL times. Unfortunately, as it probably was gravely dangerous to let slip a disbelief in god during the functional theocracy of the early Colonies, it is today often dangerous to let slip any comment betraying one’s commitment to one’s self-ownership and one’s disavowal of the absurd, unscientific postulating of the new church of professional psychology.

      Thanks, again, for your comment and for your patience with my reply. As always, I should also thank this blog owner for her courage in NOT censoring comments diametrically opposed to the prevalent, official policies and practice of modern psychology and psychiatry.

    • Paul says:

      Aiah, I thought that I would share with you the things that make me question life here in this country. It starts with the idea that others saying I know you feel pain, and it can’t be that bad. It is the condescending attitude that they have towards people, as a result quite honestly: The only thing that I see from them is that they most definitely do not want what is best for me or my family, nor do they have a clue to how many of the things that I and others have had to give up that we enjoy because we are no longer able to do them. There are a number of things that I live for in life, but to many of those people no matter how hard I had to work to get things, and how much they cost they call it all garbage. This is bascially calling me garbage, and I know that you and many others here know where I am going with this. Also I will admit that if at some point that one of these so called do gooders were to somehow get me locked up, I would loose everything on the earth that holds me here. I ask all how can this be helping anyone. I see day after day the increasing number of deaths from people that use pain medications, and to be honest I understand why, they have been cut back so far on medication that death looks better by a long shot to continued and increasing torture from unbearable pain. I would really like those that think all these people are abusing pain medications to never be allowed any, under any condition. They are not deserving of this life saving thing, as I would probably not be alive today if it were not for pain medications. There are other medications to help my other problems, but quite frankly I do not think our government wants people to enjoy life and have a reason to live that is why they are making it so difficult on people to get medications that allow people to live functional enjoyable lives.

    • Aiah says:

      Thanks, Paul, for your vulnerability and honesty. I empathize with everything you’ve said. As a physician, I can confirm that, at least here in the US, what you’ve shared about the distorting fear over habituation with effective pain medication is serious. Only roughly 2% to 5% of patients on subscription pain medication (opioids, benzodiazepines) develop dependency. But despite recent publications that implicate these drugs in increased morbidity among specifically elderly patients (cognitive and coordination problems), the fear of their effects drives poor pain management for very, very many patients. Nor are these drugs unique in their potential for major consequences. Other drugs wrongly assumed to be innocuous (like Ibuprofen and even Acetaminophen…) are statistically associated with major physiological complications with moderately-high, long-term use.

      You’re also right that for many patients, effective pain management becomes one of, if not the, most critical component of leading normal lives. This is an important issue; in our university’s studies on suicide, there is a significant and growing effect on decision-making attributable specifically (and independently) to poor pain management. Once the emotional and social effects secondary to injury (non-cancer states) are added into the association, it is clear that people are dying because they are in unbearable pain that ruins their lives.

      You are also right that, much like mental health professionals who cannot offer (some) patients effective relief from persistent and paralyzing emotional suffering, the medical establishment and the government callously offer vacuous “advice” to sufferers based on speculation about what should work–but which actual sufferers consistently report doesn’t. Worse, those for whom the advice doesn’t work often find themselves vilified as “difficult patients” or willing victims. The effects are populationally catastrophic though easy to ignore because unless someone is suffering grave pain, she/he doesn’t give it much thought. And by the time someone DOES become a chronic sufferer, it is often too late to advocate effectively.

      Most tragic about all this is that people must either endure years, decades even, of unabated pain simply because other human beings have decided for sufferers what is bearable, or sufferers must seek out their own relief. Our university’s government school and public health school did joint research showing that ineffective pain control drives a robust illicit drug market. This evidence is reproducible and global.

      Together, this should tell us two things: (1) despite even our best intentions, we (both psychological therapists and medical specialists) have NOT been able to sufficiently diminish pain in a large and growing proportion of our patients; and (2) deciding for others what suffering is bearable consigns many to lives so hellish they are willing to break federal law and risk legal and financial ruination to seek relief. They wouldn’t do this if we could/would offer them good enough alternatives. But yet still, professionals are using hackneyed and frankly irrelevant anecdotes about other people who were once close to suicide but survived and are happy today as justification for depriving others of free personal life choices.

      I hope you find relief and peace soon wherever you are. Thank you for adding your testimony.

  49. Lem says:

    You don’t have a clue if you aren’t living it! Especially if your husband and daughter want nothing to do with you!

  50. Dante says:

    I am so goddamned sick of that Kevin Hines story. It’s been more than 20 years of me wanting to die and having to hear about that response.

  51. Theresa says:

    Thank you for your comment. Since i found out i was born in the west indies with an american father who has cherokee ancestry. I am a mixture of all races and i have had only one doctor to actually help me with only three neds. One migraine called fiorecet as needed and hydrocodone as needed and diazapam for muscle spasms as needed. He retired early because of the government. He tried to fight for us chronic pain patients but the other docs were chicken. My pain was controlled and i was told to go ahead a fill every prescription and lock them up and i did and had 5 years of meds i never got dependent on until they forced me to take the crap every day. Now im on 9 prescriptions. My condtion flare up have progressed into now joint pain as well. I keep fighting but sometimes its hard. Damn this pain. I want to live but not suffering or slobbering all over myself. No im not sad nor depressed. Just relentless pain. Which my psych eval proved nothing wrong with me mentally Happy usually as long as i can control the pain in my body. Without this every single day pain. I make others smile. I am a CNA

    • paul says:

      Theresa, I belive you, and I am sorry for what you are going through. There are a few things that might help you such as moving to a country such as Netherlands or urogray one that is more conserned about harm than making things illigal. Also I seriously do wish that all of those that think the majority of people on pain are just drug addicts seeking drugs, every single one of them should feel all the pain of everyone that is unable to get relief from pain from those people in all countries. This quite honistly is probably too nice for most of them. They also should themselfs not be allowed any anestetics or pain killers for any reason. After all people should follow the rules they want all other people to live by instead of being treated as more equal than everyone else. Pain medicines in my view should be available to people in pain just as insulin is available to diebetics. They need it to improve their life, and normal people would only seek it for that. Also even for those that are able to get pain killers, quite often it is so low that people are no longer allowed to get much enjoyment out of life. Keep in mind I see the rights of those who want to abuse their bodies less than those who want to make the most of life. Pain meds do help people as they age, as aging alone is painful, so painful that it is not uncommon for the life of people to be far less in countries where pain relief is not available. If doctors and others were really serious about improving life people would be suffering far less, and I would not feel that I would be far better off with no doctors than what I am able to find near where I live. They want me to be miserable and non functional. My ADD is so bad that I am going to loose my medi cal coverage because I can’t figure out where and how to give them documentation about what my forms of income are. I do not worry, as doctors here will not even presctibe the correct asthma medication for me. I often spend more hours a day sleeping than awake, unless pain is keeping me awake. Such as the earache that I have had over a month. Since they will not help me with this I find what I can to help with the Infection. I know that Aleister Crowley died and was accused of all the drugs killing him. But he would have lived a few decades more if he could have got hold of things such as Marax and Ethromycin. The heroin that he used was started by doctors treating his caughing. Now we use codine for the same effect. I blame doctors and medication makers of the time for his heroin problem. He did not need that, as he was not using it for pain. That basically says the problem things are approved for a use, even though most of us would be medically better off with other things. Even if experimental than what is usually prescribed such as the asthma medication Advair, it is not to be used for people that have asthma attacks with mucus in their chest, but this is often ignored by doctors. All of this only is an issue because we allow doctors here to be the only ones that can prescribe, and quite honistly a pharmisist can do just as good if not better jub at doing that.

  52. Theresa says:

    Please dont misunderstand this. So many people including myself have chronic pain issues without cures. Think about waking up every day in a pain that drs dont believe is there because all test come back normal. So they assume its all in your mind so they send you to a psychiatrist and they put you on all these antidepressants which still the pain is there and instead of never been depressed a day in your life. Yes people get sad. A death in the family a marriage or relationship break up. It is truly makes you sad. Most people as like myself the sadness goes away after exceptance of this life changing experience. My father suffered with cancer and fought so hard to live but lost his battle. I was in church the following day not sad because we were expecting this outcome. I knew my Dad fought as hard as he could and yes i missed getting up that morning without him but he was not suffering anymore. He is the reason i am who I am today. I help those that can’t do for themselves anymore but i suffer also in Chronic pain for the past 20 years. My husband now has watched me suffer in so much pain. I beg God to take me home soon. Do i want to die of course not. I love every thing the sunshine on my face. Long walks around my neighborhood and going to the beach. Out on our boat. Cook outs. The night air and star gazing. I also love to write. So if chronic pain suffers cant get relief and my husband has watched drs put me on antidepressants and had to tell them not put his wife on any more because they do nothing but cause me to be depressed. He saved me from that nightmare and my evaluation the following visit was great. In moderate pain back then and no antidepressant. I had a great childhood loving parents and 20 years ago i caught a bad flu virus. It was def the flu and took the tamaflu med and soon was better. Then a couple of months later i started feeling over tired. So i added some vitamins changed my diet for a while. Then insomnia started. I had always had migraines as a child and also a slow digestive tract. They assume now that it was caused by my birth mother being poor and i was extremely malnutrition. My father and step mom took me to the states and i was never really ever sick. So depression did or hadnt started any of tbese pain conditions. I was super wife and mother but my second marriage broke up because of a dr. Telling my ex i was lying about being in pain. I was just being lazy. Even though xrays showed degenerative arthritis in my neck that would leave me in the bed staring at the ceiling because my head was so heavy it hurt to lift it off a pillow and on occassions i have use a soft neck brace when my neck gets inflamed. Then an mri showed two bulging disk in low back. That was found after i couldnt walk myself to the bathroom one morning. I can handle both those issues and the migraines at once without anything but some advil. At least back in the day i could. I dont like medications and i def hate to have a needle poked me to ease my pain off. Before my son was born i found at 20 weeks i needed to terminate my pregnancy so they could deal with my cervical cancer. My child had a chance and i believed Jesus could and would save us both so i got procedures done to keep cutting away at my cervics and ended up on bedrest the remainder of my pregnancy from june 15th to aug 5. I spent in the hospital due to constant hemorhaging. Horrible because arthritis stffens a body up if you are not allowed to get up and move around and in very terrible pain so a team of physicians had to find sometbing safe for my baby that i could take. I didnt know the difference between an opiet or asprin to be honest back then. I just knew i trusted my docs. They had me on a narcotic and while in the hospital i got to go home for two hours before the bleeding started and passed out on the comode and back to the hospital. I had started feeling tbis pain all over my body in the hospital. I thought it was because i wasnt my active self anymore. I had five kids at home and missed home terribly. My son was born the 3rd induced labor to save both of us. Something was seen on the ultrasound. So they gave me the shots to speed up his lungs but only one matured fully. One had some catching up to do. He stayed in nicu for 12 days and they made me nest because they tested me for drugs the day of admission the social worker said and i tested positive for opiets. I asked her what was an opiet. She called me a liar and i asked to be released immediately. I asked her which day of admission and i said lady did you even read my chart because if you had all drugs came from that hospital that they had given me day of admission was the same day i was released for two hours i was away from their staff. I was labeled because no body fully read my chart. Also because of a nurse mixing up urine samples i got another label. Believe it or not but it happens and they wouldnt retest me either. Which was so unfair. With trying to work in pain losing my family because of someones elses opinions and mistakes. I think if a person is in chronic pain and its constant and it burts just to move. We should have a right to end it. Im still fighting fibromyalgia and the flare ups are getting worse and no do i want to die. No i am like so many suffering endlessly and i can handle pain two kids no drugs 8 kidney stones. But fibro pain is all over the body. It never ends. You only get partial relief from it but flare ups its an er visit. So im still not depressed. This is my life and im still fighting but i pray God takes me home soon because its worse than having a baby. At least you lnow that pain ends. So dont judge medical issues you dont unferstand or test dont show it. God knows i want to live just in a little less pain. Dont blame all pain issues you cant find on depression. Suicide will definely be on the rise the for chronic pain patients because drs dont have the balls to fight for us against congress and the stats are wrong. The cdc doubled the opiet epidemic. Its heroine and fentanil killing our people in the US. That woman on tbe news said her son started with pain pills from her cabinet. I doubt it. I am sorry for their loss but everyone knows what goes on in high school and omg really the college parties. I live in a college and beach town. These kids when they get caught they arnt going to tell on their dealers. Has the whole country lost their mind God gave them. Why go to college all those years to practice medicine and try to cure folks and if they cant at least make their life as comfortable as possible so they have some quality of life. I just lost a fibro friend. Her fight is over. Mine will be over. I have a great busband now. My children are grown and just trying to enjoy my grandbabies. Fibro pain does progress then they give you a new diagnosis complex pain syndrome. Have a wonderful nigjt.

  53. Brittany says:

    Hey friends I know how it feels wanting to die and give up I had many of those times. I was in boarding school, lonely, no friends, bullied, grandparents would not let me go out to the movies or anything just study for school, I did not have my parents only calling them. I know how you feel it hurts like there are no words. But I am a living testimony friends. I wanted to do a lot of things I do not want to write them because it might give you ideas but I know what it feels to be empty crying where no one is listening, want love and attention. Oh I was there. 🙁 I am here to talk to you guys please if you are thinking of suicide please get help call the suicide lines. Your life is soooooooooooooo precious. There are many things that we do not understand why things happen but if you hold on it will work out. I am here for you guys, to be a friend, pray for you. I know how it feels trust me. <33333333 email me jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com

  54. Brittany says:

    here took it from the author If you need immediate help, please call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255 (TALK) in the U.S., or the emergency services in your area if you live elsewhere. You can also check out the Resources page for a list of other places where you can receive help by phone, text, email, or online chat.

  55. Anonymous says:

    It comes and goes, but not really. I mean, the desire to die, at least for me, is always there. It’s just sometimes it’s quiet enough that I’m not actively thinking about doing something about it. If I ever got the nerve to really do it and someone stopped me … I mean, I know it would make that person feel really great about themselves, but what about me? Then I’m back to living in this hell every day. Is that person who “saved” me going to help? Going to make my life more bearable? No, they are off feeling that they “saved” someone and are a hero and I’m left here to suffer.

    • Tom H says:

      I very much appreciate your comment in particular because it addresses something staunch anti-suicide advocates fail to. While SOME people who at one point were suicidal express gratitude for others’ intervention and for having survived, this is just not true about all people who were unsuccessful at committing suicide. More to the point, the assumption that the risks of perturbing people like you are worth it because most (assumption) suicidal people are glad not to have succeeded in their attempts is statistically unfounded, as we are learning is true of very, very much “psychological research,” because, for one thing, many of the reports of how people feel post-intervention are lost to distant follow-up. Yet more, other reviews of psychology dogma disclose strong professional and individual therapist evaluative biases that transfer onto both patient and the community at large–we tend to accept and echo professionals’ sentiments even when, otherwise, these are not authentically our own because we feel these professionals are “right” so we should follow their lead. Worse, many of these professionals’ sentiments are scientifically and philosophically untenable.

      You are ultimately correct: “it would make that person feel really great about themselves, but what about me? Then I’m back to living in this hell every day. Is that person who ‘saved’ me going to help? Going to make my life more bearable? No, they are off feeling that they ‘saved’ someone and are a hero and I’m left here to suffer.” Absolutely NO human being–president, physician, therapist, law enforcer, court official…–should have the power to impose moral or life-evaluative judgments on another free adult citizen. It baffles my mind that educated adults in this Western society founded on ideas of personal liberty presume otherwise.

      Thanks for the reminder and best of luck to you.

    • Paul says:

      Anonymous, I do get what you are saying. There is a reason that you are suffering and it is even without knowing you it is because you do not have enough money to solve the problem or are not in an area that people of low means are able to even get help. The God in the USA is not one in heaven even if heaven were here on earth. The God often worshiped is Mammon or as many know it money. This is just a fact of life for all of us, and does go against the ten commandments in the bible and against the Quran as well. I only mention this as it does help to explain why you, me and many others in this world suffer, even Buddha said that life itself is suffering, as for one thing to live something else suffers. That is why a religious sect called Jain does not eat meat, they do not want to cause the suffering of animals for their benefit. I mention all this about suffering to help explain the human condition, All animal life on this planet eats something, and humans are no exceptions. However humans are the only ones on this planet that feed off of the suffering of other humans. This is not usually done by killing, but when the killing happens it is usually with knifes, guns, hammers, poisons, it can be the result of wars declared or undeclared. We often feed off of the work of others. This is for the most part done in a socially acceptable way and when not is sometimes ends in prison for the offenders. I ask you are you doing it because you see yourself as part of the natural life cycle of humans that is found acceptable by many, or by some untreated illness that is best treated in locations where people care more about life than a quick buck. If it is because you see yourself as part of the cycle of suffering and it is not related to pain, there is hope in Jainism and other faiths that are about ending suffering, if not your best hope is to sell all the things you can and move to a place where you are accepted if you have any will to live and get help, or as you stated death. If that is the case consider moving to Oregon as they have doctor assisted suicide there, and as part of the program there they are required to do what they can to end your suffering first, and then it is all your choice beyond that. I think that is a great thing that they are required to help those that are in pain instead of like most places just let people suffer to the point where death is a persons best option. When a state does not look at ending suffering first, they are promoting death as that is the ultimate result of being more worried about addiction, money and so forth than human life. They say that they are pro-life, but to me and many others it looks like they are pro-death. I realize and others as well that it is not normal to prefer death and suicide, unless the suffering is great and they are given really no other option. As such I am saying that as a result of policies and the way they are carried out they are promoting suicide, and it is not people preferring it to life because they were given the best options. I know in Star Trek, there is a saying “Live long and Prosper”, However a much better saying is “Live well and Prosper” as a long life with only suffering to the extreme is as you say worse than death. I hope that you can find what you need to life a well life, even though it is not all that easy to find it where you live you may find it elsewhere. This is the main reason that people are all over the planet, they move to where life is better for them.

    • Andrew Williams (AndrooUK) says:

      “We won’t help you die, but we won’t help you live.”

      Government doesn’t want to lose its investment in you, but it also doesn’t put enough into prevention or cure… just some crappy SSRIs that turn you into a ghost, if they do anything at all. Therapy is a distant hope for the UK’s NHS… waiting times are so long that depressive episodes (if you have not had too many episodes) would spontaneously resolve, even without medication.

      Trust in mental health services is so low… and with good reason. Risk avoidance is high in socialised medicine and litigious societies, as if a patient does not have a choice, he is stuck with the same doctor whether or not he takes a risk… his doctor therefore will not take risks.

      Classical medications like MAOIs can really bring a person back to life, even with severe depression… but they are so hard to get because a doctor doesn’t want to be sued if you kill yourself with them.

      The more episodes of depression you have, the less likely it is you will ever recover… and will have more and worse episodes that last longer each time. It has to be stopped in the first episode, with heavy duty medication and therapy, to prevent any future episodes and to give the best chance at maintaining a fulfilling life.

      Don’t worry, though. Your saviour will feel good for a lifetime about saving you… even if your life then is a shitshow that never seems to end.

    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe they saved your life in more ways then one.
      The person who saved you doesn’t need to help. They didn’t even need to save you. That person did it out of the kindness of their hearts. The person does not consider oneself a hero but you should. Are you really suffering though? Or just a prisoner of your mind?

  56. rm says:

    my personal 2 cents as some one who feels suicide is a personal choice, a living beings right to not only choose how its own light goes out, but the degree of dignity it wishes to maintain while doing so:

    my flesh, my rights

    end of story =p

    -rm

  57. Jose says:

    Corrections for auto correct and not concentrating. It’s not all mental, my physical health has impacted all areas of my mental health and it’s just bad enough that’s it’s physical alone. It’s very draining. Yup, agree Rob, Paul and Tom

    • Theresa says:

      Please fight as long as you can to live. I suffer so with chronic pain and i want to live just with a little quality of life. Im not depressed have no mental issues but i have so many chronic pain issues. I want to be your friend not ur hero. Just soft hugs because with my disease thats all i can do most of the time.

  58. Jose says:

    It’s not mental. What about when it is chronic pain that no one really understands to try and figure out. Agree with Paul wrote on (about governments, though he stated US, control, money, that we’re just a coin) 19/01/18. Also Tom H, and I’m too tired and forgetting what am saying. I am 35 and suffering unpredictable disabling pain. I would rather have no life than this quality.

    • Paul says:

      I have lived with chronic pain for about a decade, and the only thing that I can see that comes is more pain and more difficulty getting enough relief from the pain to be able to breath properly and walk somewhat normally. Anymore there is less and less reasons for me to even be here. It is not that I want to die, it is I want to put an end to the suffering that is forced on me and so many others. In addition to the corruption that rules this world. I hear many religious groups talk about hell, and I have thought about it myself. I can honestly say that hell is an improvement to the live that many of us live here on this earth. That is because in hell we are punished for the evil that we do, and here on earth we are punished for the evil that others do, and not so much what we do. If you are basically good, hell is better than here. What people need to keep in mind is that the most dangerous are the ones that create the laws and write the history. I will say that one of the reasons I have no children is that I would not want a child of mine to grow up worse off than me, and to suffer things in childhood that I did not as a child because of control freaks.

      Also I read and hear about people being worried about drug dealers, I can say that they are quite often easy people to get along with and are more open with people about what they are getting into more than doctors are when it comes to using the medications that they prescribe. I have not bought from drug dealers, but have known a number of them personally over the years. The reason they exist is that they are filling a market where one exists. They are basically the pharmacist to those that can’t afford to get medical help for their problems from regular doctors. Taking all kinds of tests means lots of money out of pocket, that did not in the not too far past. It was affordable in the past to get x-rays and other tests, but not anymore. I was born without medical coverage, and all of the costs including the hospital were under $300, but now days that could easily be $60000 or more. Most people do not have the ability to pay what is asked of them. I can now see why people would rather die than go on, if life is nothing but endless suffering. Even The Church of Satan does not promote suicide, they say the only reason for one to end their life is to end the endless suffering, with no possibility of it ending. In other words, if someone is not able to get any enjoyment out of life, and that there is no possibility of any enjoyment of life in the future. Why Christians and others are promoting suffering of the masses is beyond me, when Christ is a healer. We really could use someone like Christ today, ones that are healers. Right now in medicine it is about treatment time and time again instead of healing to get as much money as possible off of each and everyone of us. I say that life was given to us to enjoy and enjoy it with others, but quite often we are too often prevented from doing so by laws that we are told are put into place to so called protect us. That is a lie that not even the devil himself would say, but many accept it as fact. I’m not sure how much longer I will be around, as I am here more for those I care about than myself anymore. Also we live in a world where it is acceptable to bear false witness against people, as lies are perfectly acceptable as a form of extortion in this world. Only way we could have Heaven here on earth is to live a great life without the need for money. This is what many have said in the past, and there are some trying to make it a reality here on earth now. The main thing that needs to happen is that all things mandated upon us, should not need to be paid by us, but those that are mandating them. Republicans talk about no unfunded mandates, then turn around and force them upon us, and same with the democrats.

  59. Paul says:

    Stacy, I have been thinking about what it would take for most normal people to not think of ever committing suicide, but I do not believe that our elected officials in our country will ever allow it, and that is for people to be treated fairly, and allow them to be able to at the very least be able to care for their own selves. We now live in a world that has far more concern for rules and laws to regulate people than allowing them to be able to be functional and care for themselves. Why would our ancestors for over 100,000 years of self medicating be a crime? That is because our lives really no longer matter, and we know this. If our lives really mattered we would be able to learn to provide for ourselves in all ways. Now days it is a crime to do much of the things that our ancestors did to stay alive that harms none. Since this is the case I see far less than I used to and will look the other way when there is no personal benefit for me to do anything else. I see the Mafia, and local gang members as a non threat to me compared to the FDA. Also I am sure that many other people now days feel the same way.

    • Tom H says:

      Paul, you wrote, “I have been thinking about what it would take for most normal people to not think of ever committing suicide, but I do not believe that our elected officials in our country will ever allow it, and that is for people to be treated fairly, and allow them to be able to at the very least be able to care for their own selves.” I agree with you wholeheartedly. I’ve been arguing something similar, which is that rather than forcefully committing individuals intent on committing suicide as a way to “protect” them (all the while subjecting them to horrific so-called medical treatments against their will and removing their other freedoms from them), the psychiatric community (and therapists–anyone, really–can also begin the “civil commitment” process with a simple threatening phone call to the authorities) together with the rest of the community ought to work on making our communities places people WANT to stay alive to keep experiencing. But, of course, human civilizations can’t do that yet. Or we don’t want to. There are people who enjoy hurting others and our governments, despite their rhetoric, care more about money and power than citizens’ quality of life. Nor can we stop people from reasoning that other inevitable life challenges are worth it. Some, for example, simply don’t want to face the horrors of old age–chronic pains; worsening diseases; the indignity of being increasingly discounted; the loss of autonomy; frequent financial disaster, and abandonment by family, friends, and community just to name a few.

      So why are we acting shocked that some people would rather die than experience chronic poverty, or have to work for decades in fields they hate while their bodies suffer injuries and ongoing pain for low wages–just because of competition? Why are we so surprised that some of the undesirables among us who have the SAME desires for affection and intimacy and companionship but who, through no behavioral fault of their own, have been relegated to the scrapheap of humanity would prefer not to live than to suffer every single day from unabated loneliness which we already know is profoundly painful? Why are these professionals demanding that others live lives no one would choose for their children and which no one wants for her-/himself?

      I’ve read some of these professionals’ personal recountings of their own experiences with suicidal thoughts. While I sympathize with their own experiences of pain and applaud their desire to help people, their reasoning that we should ALWAYS intervene to prevent suicide is as irrational as a woman who had an abortion and later regretted it reasoning that under all circumstances all other women should NOT be allowed to have abortions. If the latter scenario is indefensible, I would like to know why the former is not. I just cannot fathom that reasonably educated human beings would believe that life can always be fixed well enough that others won’t prefer to be dead than to live. This should be among the most elementary inferences. In the meantime, while the anti-suicide pundits make it harder and harder for people to leave hellish lives that do NOT get better, they are damning human beings to choose the most gruesome, painful, and lonely ways out of life because many lack the medical competence to do otherwise.

      Thanks for adding your voice to a growing international debate that at last more national governments are paying attention to and acting, thankfully, on behalf of personal freedom.

  60. Brittany says:

    Remember you matter. There is Nothing in this world that is worth taking your precious life: death, being in debt, getting hurt, losing someone, being sick, anything you are dealing with its not worth it, its all temporary and you will get through it. Its a phase. I will care if you die :(((((( please Just loveeee yourself and love others. ♡♡♡ forgive yourself and do something for someone. Email me jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com
    because you matter and I care for you. I am here to listen to you, i am here to cry for you. I am here to pray for you. YOU MATTER!!!! ♡♡♡♡♡♡

    • Rob says:

      No, it is not all temporary. Some of us have chronic medical conditions that don’t go away, and make life miserable.

      • Anon says:

        I’m never sure if these replies get to the right comments so excuse the cut-N-paste… Rob (January 14, 2018 at 3:51 pm):

        I agree wholeheartedly. There are many philosophical and scientific problems with the anti-suicide platform, regardless of an individual’s experience with suicidal ideation. I think most of us wish life were such that no one considered suicide. And most of us recognize that life requires good coping strategies. But none of that changes the fact that life can be onerous and exceed the capacity of many to cope, even with professional intervention. There is never a guarantee that any therapy will work. Never. It’s hypocritical of people to claim they care while, recognizing both that they can’t guarantee an end to others’ suffering AND that therapy cannot either, damning others to prolonged, chronic suffering. Yes, many may “get better,” though there are many problems with that presumption, too. But many also do not. And communities are NOT obliged to care for those who’re suffering. Look at all the global reports about the spreading epidemic of painful chronic loneliness and all the physical diseases scientists attribute to it. So adults should ultimately be allowed access to painless, medically competent/efficient ways to leave life if this is our persistent choice. After all, unless every newborn is a slave to the State or the community, the sole thing we should have absolute ownership claims to, irrespective others’ beliefs, is our own lives.

  61. Lee says:

    I’m so ready to get my life over with not that I’m depressed or anything I’m headed for financial disaster and I want to be cremated and I have money just little but can at least have myself cremated and don’t want to be a burden on family but they always want me put in a hospital or some stupid shit and that’s not going to solve the problem at all

    • Chad N. says:

      Lee

      I’m not dismissing your concern over your financial disaster but I have a hard time seeing that as a reason I would consider dying. Money isn’t that important in my opinion. I prefer family which it sounds like you have. I realize they don’t understand the problem but maybe that can change. I know reasons for seeking an end can be complicated and trying to simplify them for others to understand seems easiest but it undermines your argument. That is why I’m doing the formal euthanasia route, getting evaluated and letting the DR try treatments then documenting the failings, or who knows maybe successes. I just want to make sure I’m not missing something in my decision. I hope I am and I hope you might be too. Life should have meaning, I just thought I’d say family seems like meaning.

      • Anon says:

        Chad, I hope you don’t mind me adding my two cents. You wrote, ” I know reasons for seeking an end can be complicated and trying to simplify them for others to understand seems easiest but it undermines your argument. ” I disagree that someone’s argument for rejecting life can be “undermined” so long as the reasons given are personal. Lee’s reasons for wanting to leave are his perceptions of the consequences of “financial ruin” on him. Given poverty is real and people suffer significantly from it, it is reasonable to be terrified of sliding into poverty. Someone else may not fear it but THAT doesn’t invalidate another person’s perspective of poverty and whether he wants to experience it.

        I do appreciate you’ve shared how YOU believe you would feel if you were headed for financial ruin. But surely other people can feel radically differently AND just like the way different people choose to take or leave certain types of music or food, someone else can decide for reasons that matter only to him life is just not worth it. Absent an objective reason such thinking must be “wrong,” and I’ve never come upon such a reason, this type of thinking isn’t the sort of reasoning that can be “valid” or “invalid.” This is really the crux of this whole social debate, but no one is seriously addressing it. To be clear, I’m not advocating any particular choice regarding suicide. I’m arguing that the only opinion that really matters on the matter is that of the person thinking about his or her own life.

      • Chad N. says:

        Anon

        You’re two cents is welcome but we’re saying the same thing. There’s more than just “financial difficulties” going on. The difference being I warned that leaving it at that will allow others to dismiss his assertion or in your case put words in his mouth (assuming Lee is male, sorry if I’m wrong). It’s an honest reaction to being given a difficult topic and limited information.

        Lee

        My point was this. For the people that matter to you provide more detail. It might make it so you don’t go through this alone, may help them know it’s not a fleeting overreaction and could help you feel at peace going forward. At least it has done those to varying degrees for me as another considering death as a better option than life. I’m sorry all I can offer is that advice and I hope you find some value in it.

    • Tom H says:

      Chad N: We are NOT saying the same thing. You wrote, “There’s more than just ‘financial difficulties’ going on.” I wrote that Lee is the only one who can determine what factor or factors make his life worthwhile to him. He has already stated he does not want to experience financial disaster. That is a sufficient reason for HIM. No further justification is required. It is his life and his to judge and his to decide on. He shouldn’t need to explain what others perceive to be something else going on. If the state offered a painless way for people to end our lives, I’d expect specialists to ask us to provide an explanation as a test of our rationality. But there can be no philosophical justification for a judgment that is fundamentally a personal taste.

      • Chad N. says:

        Tom H/Anon?: We ARE saying the same thing. I am just saying more things than the one. I agree only he can decide if his life is worth living to him. I do not deny that and it is the basis of my decision to seek the end of my own life. No further justification is required but that doesn’t mean that one might not attempt to be provided in the right situation. Nothing in my original post negated his original claim I only expressed that my reaction would be different. I did add advice that I hoped might help should he be trying to explain his choice to the family that he stated he has. I am inferring that he has tried and had difficulty doing so in the past given his statement of “they always want me put in a hospital or some stupid shit” in the context of solving “the problem.” Again that was just advice presented as my opinion thus not negating his own. I didn’t tell him what to do or judge him for what he stated he wanted to do. Unless you are offended at me stating I have hope we both might find a reason to live or me expressing my own desire for a family I do not understand your issue with my initial posting.
        Your extract from my second posting, “There’s more than just ‘financial difficulties’ going on.”, is logically analogous to your statement of ,“Lee’s reasons for wanting to leave are his perceptions of the consequences of “financial ruin” on him.”, as you stated REASONS not REASON as he had originally. I too assumed there was more but you went a step further by adding “Given poverty is real and people suffer significantly from it, it is reasonable to be terrified of sliding into poverty.” If you will notice, I stated I believed there to be more while you added details to his condition that did not come from him. YOU put words in HIS mouth and made assumptions on HIS reasons. This is exactly what I was trying to help him avoid should he try to talk to his family again. When faced with a lack of information most people make it up to fill in the blanks just like you did. That was all I was trying to explain. Thank you for demonstrating it.

    • Tom H says:

      Chad N: You wrote, “I know reasons for seeking an end can be complicated and trying to simplify them for others to understand seems easiest but it undermines your argument.” Even if the “your” is general & not specific (meant for the person you’re addressing), that is a claim, minimally, of argument validity. There are no valid aesthetic or moral evaluative arguments. On re-reading Lee’s statement, I see it may not even be financial ruination that motivates his desire to end his life. It is extremely likely that whatever we tell others, or don’t, they will augment what we tell them with their own perceptions and reasons because, regardless what we say, others do not have our experiences, feelings, or thoughts. My gripe is with the supposition of undermining, not what others may envision on hearing what is being said–what I believe to be inevitable.

      I reject the claim that I am putting words in the original speaker’s mouth. I made claims about poverty in general and made an argument about someone else assessing financial disaster. On re-reading Lee’s comment, I don’t know how financial disaster affects his reasoning about suicide, but it isn’t important because his argument is dependent on a subjective evaluation. Again, my gripe is with claims about undermining personally evaluative arguments. On reading your comment back to me, I still maintain we are not saying the same thing.

      It’s not my intention, here of all places, to have a back-and-forth comment battle. Thanks for remaining civil despite our disagreement. Best of luck to you.

  62. Gee says:

    I think that there should be a suicide program whereby those who are suicidal can sign up, donate organs ( which would stop organ harvesting, lower donor lists) and do £10,000 death payout fee. Personally think its disgusting that dignitas charge £8,000 not including other fees and charges so its higher than £8,000

    SO instead of people just dying, they are able to leave a small lump sum behind ( can be used to cover funeral costs ,clear debts ** haha not that debt would even be relevant but catch my gist? Help others with their organ donation who WANT to live(which would help so called donor list problem) and person who sign up finally get well deserved peace for themselves!!!!

    People dont understand the exhaustion of having to suffer and bear our personal struggles for others is what makes this depression cycle worse. There are some people who GENUINELY dont mind leaving this ‘life’ place behind – its mundane if you are able to see a bigger picture. Most are too closed minded to view death as a bad thing, when it really is just you being reborn elsewhere……Weird to know that we, all have died already before and just cant remember how and whens……Does time exist? Instead of forcing people to endure there could be a logical system set up where EVERYONE wins 🙂 We need to start question why they dont want us to die,,,,,,,, they want us to work to death!!!!!! longer we are here longer we can pay tax. Its always been a money game folks and dont expect churches to tell you – they are in on it too!!!!!!!!!! Encourage procreation so slave race continues

    Are we growing plants or do the plants grow us? Who REALLY eats who?

    • paul says:

      Interesting that someone wants the organs from someone that commits suicide. If I was going to end my life I guarentee that I would not want anyone to benefit from it. As the only reason that I would end my life is because life is nothing but suffering caused by others. Why should anyone that causes me suffering benefit from my death?

      • Anon says:

        To: paul
        January 10, 2018 at 8:04 pm

        Paul, I totally agree with you. Thanks for having the guts to say what I bet a lot of us are feeling but dare not say aloud.

      • Chad N. says:

        I’m actually working to find a doctor in Belgium so that I can be euthanized. Even so I see no issues with donating organs. Yes I don’t enjoy life but others do. Yes some of those others are related to why I don’t enjoy life but not all. Trying to paint the picture that the rest of the world is all directly related to your low quality of life seems at the least a little overly dramatic to me. How much interaction have you had with the undiscovered tribes in Papua New Guinea? If none then your argument has at least one small hole, if a lot then write a book about it and you’ll be famous.

    • Anonymous says:

      I assure you when I’m dead, I want to be gone from this world completely. No one is having any bodily part of mine.

    • Chad N. says:

      Ok…. organ donation from euthanasia is likely I’d say. Getting paid for it is not due to ethics and the definition of “donation”. If you want to profit off of pain and suffering that’s fine, go to med school or something in law.

  63. Chad N. says:

    Ms. Freedenthal,

    Thank you for reopening this article for comment. I’m sure that it weighs on you but for whatever it’s worth I feel you have built a good forum here.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Thank you, Chad. I appreciate your comment! It does weigh on me, which I wrote about here: https://www.speakingofsuicide.com/2017/08/17/speaking-of-suicide-within-limits/

      Thanks again!

    • Brittany says:

      Chad please dont end your life. You matter to me and so many others. Message me jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com. Please it is not worth it. What is going on? I am hear to listen. Anyone else reading this. I love you all and care for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Chad N. says:

        Brittany

        Thank you for your consideration but the issue isn’t me mattering to another. It is me mattering to myself. I am just finally valuing what I want out of life and just did so too late. If it might help look at it this way; God made me and made me as I am so who am I to try to divert his will. I simply hope I can fulfill the purpose for me and be done with this life as soon as he will allow. I’m taking it on faith that there is some purpose. Pray for me if it helps you, but remember to pray for yourself as well.

    • Puck says:

      Something that has been upsetting me for sometime is that I feel that many doctors and the FDA want me dead, as I have breathing problems and I am unable to get a doctor to write a prescription for what will help me, as they are worried that it might cause me to have a heart attack in 10 to 20 years. Quite frankly I would rather take a medication that is 100% guarenteed to kill me in 10 to 20 years than have the breathing and helplessness and problems being able to think clearly enough to even be able to put my recepts togeather so I can get my taxes filed. If the tax collector for the state of california takes my home I will not only be ending my life a few others as well, as all of this could easily be solved by proper medications. Am I suppose to go to local drug dealers and buy them what ever that they might want so i can function enough to be able to think at the same level that I was able to just 10 years prior. I really do not care much about the world anymore, as I can see that I am wanted dead, that is other than my parents, friends and business contacts that I have been building for the last 20 years so I can earn enough to live on, but if I am so messed up by lack of proper medicines what is really the point of even living. I did not get my Christmas present that being WWIII as that is most likely the only way that I could possibly have my problems solved, and those that enjoy me suffering get theirs.

  64. Cass says:

    i know how it feels to be in pain every day, it seems like i dnt deserve anything good. things never stop getting worse for me. i wish i had the guts to end it all i wish i knew how to do it. life seems like a neverending torture 🙁

    • Chantell says:

      I feel the exact same.

    • Puck says:

      I know how you feel, as I am in pain every day, and the only things that come to mind is that the reason that we suffer is that we are not the kind of people that support the prison industrial complex that is run by private prisons. They are in support of those that commit felonies against the public far more than those that just need medications to be functional in life. I will admit that I would have never thought 10 years ago that I would be saying much that I do now, about how much that even though I had followed Satan for a number of years that I look forward to the coming of Christ, Ragnarok, or what ever you want to call it because as a species we are a paracite on the face of this planet. We have killed off many species in the promotion of our own life, and now days we are predators on our very own species and actually support this, and say lies that we do not.
      You my friend have nothing wrong with you other than the fact that you are another human of poor design that breaks down prematurely and are unable to get medications and care that will allow you to enjoy the rest of your natural life.
      Ever read about the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah? Those are the kind of places that we live in our world today, and I am not talking about gay, as that is not an abomination, but preying on your own kind is, and that is the world that we live in today.

  65. Anonymous says:

    I want to suicide.

    • Callidora says:

      And why??

    • David says:

      To be brutally honest no one needs to give you a reason why if that’s what they’ve decided. That being said it seems like she/he wants someone to ask but who knows.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Anonymous,

      It’s sad you want to die by suicide. I hope you will check out the Speaking of Suicide Resources page for a list of places you can get immediate help for suicidal thoughts, by phone, email, or text.

    • Brittany says:

      are you okay 🙁 you can talk about whats going on. I know this worlds hard to live in. Your in my prayers

  66. Annoyed says:

    What a load of sanctimonious tripe. Just because YOU were able to recover and see life as worth living, doesn’t mean that applies to others. You are imposing your will on others. What you advocate for is cruel. If someone wants to die and hasn’t responded to treatment, LET THEM

    • Pieter says:

      A sincere question.

      Can someone please articulate the reasons for making suicide illegal?

      I have never understood the moral or legal reasons for people wanting to check out of this mortal coil when they choose to. For people with terminal illnesses, this is a no-brainer (and should be for their loved ones, too). Why anyone would want anyone else to suffer, not to mention the exorbitant amount of money that is wasted trying to eke out a few more breaths of life, is beyond me.

      But I also mean why do we have a problem with someone who simply doesn’t want to live anymore? WHY force someone to stay at a party they don’t want to be at? Seriously. We advocate for personal choice in almost every other aspect of life, particularly medical aspects (abortion, organ donation, drug use, consumption), so why are we uncomfortable with suicide? If there’s any way help can be offered then by all means, then the individual should grab it with both hands. But if they feel they are beyond help & they feel there’s no other way, then the choice is very much up to them.

      Hopefully, like other specious moral issues from yesteryear (gay marriage, gender issues, marijuana etc) we will quickly get past this arbitrary and bogus moral roadblock.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Pieter,

        Thanks for sharing your thoughts here. I want to clarify that suicide isn’t illegal in the U.S.. If someone attempts suicide and survives, they will not be charged with a crime. (That is, they won’t be charged with a crime if they didn’t commit another crime in the process; I recall some years back that someone attempted suicide by parking their car on train tracks. The train derailed, killing some passengers, and the suicidal person, who survived, was charged in their deaths.)

        I think I articulate in my post my reasons for preventing suicide. Here’s the shortened version: Many suicidal people change their minds and later are glad they didn’t die.

      • Pieter says:

        Stacey,

        Yes, some people whose suicides were prevented felt very happy that they were. They felt elated to have the gift of life back. But is this a sufficient a reason to intervene?

        No.

        All of us are engaged in making irreversible decisions. For some of these decisions, we are likely to pay very dearly. Is this a reason to stop us from making them? Should the state be allowed to prevent a couple from marrying because of genetic incompatibility? Should an overpopulated country institute forced abortions? Should smoking be banned for the higher risk groups? The answers seem to be clear and negative. There is a double moral standard when it comes to suicide. People are permitted to destroy their lives only in certain prescribed ways.

        And if the very notion of suicide is immoral – why stop at individuals? Why not apply the same prohibition to political organizations (such as the Yugoslav Federation or the USSR or East Germany or Czechoslovakia, to mention four recent examples)? To groups of people? To institutions, corporations, funds, not for profit organizations, international organizations and so on?

        This fast deteriorates to the land of absurdities, long inhabited by the opponents of suicide.

    • Tom H says:

      Stacey, again, there’s no way to reply to your reply. I don’t know if that’s intentional, but I feel compelled to point out, respectfully, that your justification for preventing suicides, “Many suicidal people change their minds and later are glad they didn’t die,” is neither a statistically valid argument (there is no comparison between the community who survive and disavow their earlier suicidal ideations and the untold numbers who successfully committed suicide) nor a philosophically valid reason to proscribe free personal choice. Many people who get divorced later regret their choice–as is also true for very many significant life choices (like the choise to drop out of school or give up citizenship in a prosperous nation…). That is the very cornerstone of personal freedom–that we and we alone get to decide about our personal lives.

      Of course, when someone seeks out the help of a psychologist or therapist or priest or minister… that is her or his free choice to seek counsel. It is notable the contrasting case with other patients (the working hypothesis undergirding mental illness of which there is no rigorous cause-effect proof is that these so-called diseases are organic diseases of the brain) who are free to terminate therapy at any time despite (a) experts’ prognoses that doing so will be terminal and (b) it being just as arguably in such patients’ interests to be deprived of the freedom of choice–under similar reasoning (the documented regret of those who forego treatment and later lament their choice). In no other branch of health science, with the exception of the consideration of legal minors, can health practitioners countermand patients’ wishes wholesale, and certainly not for the justification that you offer here.

      Lastly, that the majority of a community feels a certain way, it is consistent with US legal and social policy history as well as social moral philosophy, is no justification for imposing others’ personal life decisions on an individual. Such is the sentiment of the long history of US civil rights law and I’m confident eventually this most definitively personal matter will fall under the same umbrella. We are neither willing nor able to care for very, very many who choose to die. That may be a sad affirmation, but it is true and unless we both want to and can do such things, we shouldn’t even be having this conversation as precious few (if any) of us will be there to comfort those otherwise utterly bereft of comfort.

  67. Aricia says:

    The fundamental question that one must ask:

    “Is there anything in life worth doing or experiencing that makes prolonging your existence worthwhile?”

    I think that this question can only be answered on an individual level and CANNOT really be answered in a general or holistic sense. This is because life is a subjective experience, and although one individual may have their reasoning as to why they wish to continue living, another may feel justified in blowing their brains out. Which individual is correct in their reasoning? I would say both are correct from their own perspective. Aside from the mere fact that most people are simply propelled to survive solely through the fear of death, the reasoning for survival is a very subjective matter. No philosophical reasoning can conclude that life is better than death or that death is better than life, especially since you can’t possibly know what is on the other side of death.

  68. mic says:

    Stacey, thanks for your interesting post. But speaking as someone who has been suicidal for many years, the idea that people such as me should be forcibly kept alive (or else be left to try risky and painful methods of secretive suicide) deepens my despair. In fact, I would have to say that the current laws that are keeping suicidal people trapped in an unwanted existence is the greatest contributor to my suicidal ideation; more than the personal issues of loneliness and failure stemming from my autistic spectrum disorder. I appreciate that you mean well in wanting to prevent suicide, but denying people their bodily sovereignty and keeping them imprisoned within a life that is burdensome to them (after they never consented to being born in the first place) is akin to slavery in my view.

    I can’t really top J Connor’s excellent comment, which covers all the bases very well. But to reiterate what he/she said, non-existence cannot be harmful and suffering is always harmful. Although in many cases, suicidal people’s lives do turn around eventually; if the individual concerned can provide a reasoned and competent explanation of why they wish to end their life, then it should be their inalienable right to do so as long as nobody else is directly endangered in the process. To echo again a comment of J Connor’s, to prevent people from being able to make this determination on their own is a case of forcibly using the state apparatus to impose one’s own values and beliefs (in this case, it often stems from a religious conviction in the absolute sanctity of life). I would consider that to be a violation of the individual’s freedom of thought and is effectively a violation of freedom of/from religion.

    • Grieving Mother says:

      So, from reading many of the comments I am horrified to know that many people think that suicide is simply a person’s choice. I just lost my 17yr old daughter to suicide and you people are really disturbing in my opinion. She was a senior getting ready to graduate and start her life. But instead I buried her exactly 4 months after her 17th birthday. Her 15 yr old sister found her. Now I have to worry about losing her too. She is in counseling now and praying it works. I will do whatever it takes to save her. I already feel like I failed my oldest daughter and I refuse to fail my 15yr old. Suicide is murder so I don’t understand how anyone can think that letting someone kill themselves is OK. It is repulsive to me knowing so people think it’s OK.

  69. 656E64206974 says:

    “And yet, even with that intention, the moment he jumped off the bridge, he instantly regretted his decision”

    I’ve attempted twice and both times I woke up feeling even more bitter than when I did it.
    So you mileage may vary.

  70. Pechorin says:

    In my experience, there are people who truly ought to end their lives, but they are stopped by all the cowardice credited to suicides. And so they go on, becoming exponentially more miserable by the day, with their sense of valuelessness showing itself in less agreeable forms, recklessness, bad manners, and possibly even trolling. Such individuals cannot end the agony of their existence, so they seek to drag others down with them, and I am not even going to start on those who suffer in silence, only screaming their curse on the human race when and where nobody shall hear them.

    I ponder suicide often, but if I had the nerve to end this wretched life, I probably would have no desire to end it. That nerve would have enabled me to make something of it.

  71. James says:

    I had a spine injury from a spinal cord stimulator trial about a
    year-and-a-half ago. I lost most of the use of my left leg, bladder function
    and live a life of chronic neuropathic pain 24 hours every day. I can get
    around with a cane but the pain is so bad I find it hard to do anything or go
    places with these issues. Even sitting upright in a chair hurts. I spend most of my time
    laying on our sectional. I’m 56, have a wife and 11 year old son and I know my
    wife has totally had it with my problems. I want to end my life. But I just can’t go on like this, every day and night is such a struggle and I know it makes it
    tougher for the few people close me. You really can’t understand the life of
    chronic pain without living it. It destroys you emotionally and you just don’t
    care about things anymore, even the people you love. You live a dead life and
    can go from rage to tears so easy. I have tried everything possible to lessen
    this pain but nothing works. I keep waiting each day for it to get better but
    it never does. Pain meds help a great deal especially when I have to go
    somewhere, but with the government issues and the crackdown on opiates I had to
    cut back on them and it really hurts. Doctors don’t want to have the feds in
    their business and I can’t blame them. Just another thing to make my days much
    more difficult. I still have some hopes that this pain will ease up but I
    really doubt it will happen and I don’t take that tragic step of ending my
    life. I’m not looking for sympathy or advice, there is little I have not done for my issues. To all out there who suffer like I do I wish you the best.

    [This comment was edited to abide by the Comments Policy. – SF]

    • Puck says:

      I am sorry to hear that you had a bad surgery. The one thing that far too many just do not get and that is the opiates are far safer than most alternatives such as surgery, and over the counter medications when there is chronic pain. I also have chronic pain, and have been using opiates for about a decade now. I had my meds cut and had to find another doctor. After all what far too many just do not get is that opiates can kill, and life is terminal. What is needed is for life to be worth living for people not to kill themselves with opiates or some other method. Have you though about moving to another state, one where you can get medical pot and other herbals. The main reason that makes sense that Kratom and Pot are either illegal or facing being illegal is that there is not enough profit in them for the major drug makers in this country. Also their money is more important to those in government than our lives or the lives of our families.

  72. DF says:

    Yes, hope and hopelessness are equally delusional states. The question of their “truthfulness” will always be as unverifiable as the truthfulness of any other deeply held belief. The relevant question to ask of any of our beliefs is: “Does this belief contribute to me living with myself and others in a way that is helpful?”

  73. Anon says:

    Because, even if an individual has been suicidal for 20 plus years, there is and will always be hope. The worst thing I can imagine is someone not surviving long enough to find what life can be, that it will not feel like this forever, and to see the colours in the world. Speaking as someone who has attempted to suicide numerous times to the point of being resuscitated twice. There is always, always, always, always hope, even if you can’t see it or even understand the concept. I would suffer a million times over and over again to see and appreciate life as I do now.

    • Rick says:

      THANKYOU for your encouragement in the deepest, darkest “Hellhole”, soooooooo many of us are currently experiencing in this Sin filled world.. Your “failure” at suicide, just saved many,many, many more struggling soul’s. Thank you. Eternally(I PRAY) grateful.God bless you..

    • J Connor says:

      So you believe you have the right to impose your experience and beliefs onto others? Utterly baffling. I’m not suicidal. I’m a physician who believes in body autonomy which extends to the right-to-die (see Belgium and the Netherlands for case studies in action so I needn’t explain my position). What you’re suggesting is akin to a religious zealot pushing their beliefs and agenda on others. Philosophically speaking, “hope” is an illusion. Reality is what’s left when you’re not trying to escape from your discomfort with hope. As a wise teacher once said, “Hope and fear is a feeling with two sides. As long as there’s one, there’s always the other. This is the root of our pain. In the world of hope and fear, we always have to change the channel, change the temperature, change the music, because something is getting uneasy, something is getting restless, something is beginning to hurt, and we keep looking for alternatives.” So you see, your whole position is grounded in YOUR personal belief system; you could easily replace the word “HOPE” with “GOD” and it wouldn’t be any different.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        J Connor,

        Thanks for contributing to the discussion. You raise good ideas, but there is one confusing point. If hope is an illusion, wouldn’t hopelessness be the same? And if people then kill themselves based on an illusion (per your philosophy), then wouldn’t we have an ethical obligation to intervene, in the same manner that someone who’s delirious with a fever of 106 is protected from himself or herself? I use that extreme example solely for the purpose of an illustrative analogy, based on the logic you use above; in reality, I realize that the situations that suicidal people face are seldom, if ever, so simplistic.

        I appreciate your engagement in the discussion, and it leads me to a greater question that others’ comments have led me to, as well: Why are you against others having or expressing hope?

        In this case, Anon didn’t say we should use force against the suicidal. They simply expressed a belief, in the same way that you did. So, by extension, are you imposing your belief on others merely by expressing it?

        These aren’t intended to be rhetorical questions. I’d like to keep the conversation going. Thank you.

    • J Connor says:

      Stacey, unfortunately, you don’t have a “Reply” link under your comment, so I’m replying again to Anon. To answer your questions:

      You said: “If hope is an illusion, wouldn’t hopelessness be the same? And if people then kill themselves based on an illusion (per your philosophy), then wouldn’t we have an ethical obligation to intervene, in the same manner that someone who’s delirious with a fever of 106 is protected from himself or herself?”

      I’m not sure this analogy works. People don’t kill themselves *because* of hopelessness – hope/hopelessness are merely words we use to describe probabilistic states which exist only in our minds. People hope for all kinds of things. They hope to win the lottery. They hope to meet Prince Charming and live happily ever after. They hope to be rich and famous. More often than not, hope is not grounded in reality – it’s used as a diversion FROM reality. If hope is grounded in reality, it can be a useful cognitive tool. But I rarely see hope applied that way, so I’m talking about the former.

      People kill themselves for a variety of reasons, but I’d like to focus this example on those who are suffering from severe, lifelong mental illness that has not responded to treatment. Those people often kill themselves due to an unbearable pain that they’ve been carrying for years and years (with treatment). Eventually, some of these folks will make a very reasonable and logical assessment that they are likely going to be struggling uphill like that for the rest of their lives. They may decide that they are willing to foreclose on any future good times because an absence of good times isn’t harmful, whereas suffering is always harmful. Some may call this “hopelessness;” the truth is, in some cases, it’s a realistic, pragmatic assessment of a suicidal person’s reality. It doesn’t matter what labels we apply because we’re not the one living that person’s life. Some may believe that under all circumstances, people should have hope (like Anon), even after say, 40 years of battling illness and suffering intensely; never mind their own experience and judgment and choices about how they’d like their life to go, they should just “keep hope alive.” All too often, I see people using other people’s suffering in this way to give meaning and value to their own interpretations of life. That’s simply not appropriate.

      You said: “In this case, Anon didn’t say we should use force against the suicidal. They simply expressed a belief, in the same way that you did. So, by extension, are you imposing your belief on others merely by expressing it?”

      Anon responded to your question, “If Someone’s Life is So Awful that They Want to Die, Why Stop Them?” with, “Because, even if an individual has been suicidal for 20 plus years, there is and will always be hope.”

      I realize you have changed the title of the post after the fact to a softer word, “prevent,” but I’m going with the word “stop,” because that’s what we often do. To “stop” someone is often to use force. And the reason Anon suggested we “stop” someone whose life is so miserable that they wish to die is because….hope. Furthermore, he/she said, “There is always, always, always, always hope, even if you can’t see it or even understand the concept.” You can hope all you want for something which has no probability of happening, but that doesn’t change reality. I could give more clinical and real-life examples than you’d care to read where there IS no hope, there’s just plain’ ol’ reality. Anon’s response suggests to me, that under any and all circumstances one should cling to hope and ignore reality and keep on suffering because “I believe this about life and the world, and you should too, even if you don’t understand it.” It’s laced with dogma. To be clear, I don’t have any issues with Anon’s hopefulness as it’s applied to **their own life.**

      To reiterate – I’m about personal autonomy. If hope works for you, great! I certainly encourage my patients to remain hopeful when, clinically speaking, there is a reasonable justification for it. I have seen many cases where false hope was more than counterproductive for patients facing very real end-of-life situations. Conversely, I had a Buddhist cancer patient last year who rejected the notion of hope and stated she’d prefer to “be with what is.” She was one of the best patients I’ve ever had. No doubt, her meditation practice helped her healing process along. But she never clung to hope as a distraction from what she was experiencing – she never once turned away from it – she went through it fully, bravely, and presently. She prompted me to read up on the Buddhist view on hope (Pema Chodron is the “wise teacher” I quoted in the aforementioned comment).

      My point all along was this: We should be very clear that hope is an aspect of personal belief, and personal beliefs should not be used to impose upon the liberty of others.

      As a caveat, I do believe suicide prevention is necessary under most circumstances, as many people who attempt are in crisis. I also believe there’s a subset of the suicidal population who are left to suffer relentlessly from untreatable illnesses because they’re not “terminal,” and I do not doubt that one day in the future, we’ll look back at ourselves and see our current policies as inhumane.

      Stacey, if you’re interested, I would suggest watching this Yale Philosophy course on the rationality of suicide. It’s only a few parts long, and it’s an undergrad course, but I have yet to find any material which better illustrates my line of thinking on this topic. Thank you for keeping this conversation going! It’s obviously an important one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MajfZIyHP8U

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        J Connor,

        Thanks for your thoughtful and well-reasoned reply to my comment. (And yes, it’s unfortunate that these are all nested under Anon’s comment, since you and I have moved into a different conversation between ourselves.)

        I appreciate the points you raise. I think for me, as someone involved in suicide prevention, the terrible challenge I face is not knowing who is on the other end of the screen. By that I mean, when someone leaves a comment disparaging hope, the words can be validating in a soothing way to someone whose situation has not improved after many years of fruitless efforts to get better. On the other hand, the words might be validating to someone for whom validation is damaging – the person whose hopelessness arises from cognitive distortions, for example, and for whom some hope is not only warranted but potentially healing. Yet many people in the second camp think they belong in the first (and many in the first wish they belonged in the second). And, in keeping with a fundamental disagreement that you and I appear to have, I think it’s rarely possible to know that there is no hope. Life surprises us all. Is that reason enough to stay alive? That might be a more apt question than whether hope does or does not exist in a particular situation.

        I will try to watch the Yale course you referenced. As I wrote in another comment today, I do see the merit of some arguments for not intervening when someone is suicidal. In particular, I believe that more people would get help – and be more honest when they do – if they didn’t have to worry about being committed to a hospital against their will. Susan Stefan writes meaningfully about these issues in her book Rational Suicide, Irrational Laws: Examining Current Approaches to Suicide in Policy and Law, which is a book that might interest you if you haven’t read it already.

        And yes, I agree, this is an important conversation, and one we will see more and more in the years to come, I suspect.

  74. Ebony says:

    I’m suicidally depressed and have been for the past ten years but I refuse to give up hope. Even though life is difficult and things dont always go the way id like them to I will continue fighting. I mean we all die in the end anyway so why bother rushing things? May as well enjoy life to the best of my abilities. I refuse to end my life because I know that even though things seem hopeless theres always hope and that I will overcome. And I hope that all of you do too.

    • Aiah Zohar says:

      It’s absolutely terrific that you are hopeful. Life without hope can be bleak. I hope you won’t take my observation as an affront, but it’s quite demonstrable that there are many, many circumstances without hope. While it is theoretically true that “anything” is possible, and therefore one could argue there is always hope, given the span of human life, some events’ low probability of occurrence practically dismisses “hope.” Early in the treatment of some diseases, for instance, hope can be helpful in motivating patients to persevere through difficult interventions that significantly improve survival rates. However, other disease states have low survival rates, and research shows that faith or hope do not statistically alter patients’ survival rates for such diseases. In fact, at some point in the trajectory of disease, “hope” can be counterproductive, disincentivizing families and patients from making hard but necessary decisions. So not only are there legitimately hopeless situations, and not only can it be objectively demonstrated that hope does not alter outcomes, but hope itself seems to be a proxy for situations with sufficiently high chance of a favorable outcome.

      I’m not trying to be argumentative or a downer. But in a discussion about legal rights and personal freedoms concerning already culturally biased phenomena (like gender identity or marriage rights…), I think it’s extremely important to be as precise as possible about the mechanics of the phenomenon under consideration. While some people for a host of reasons have hope where their currently unsatisfactory lives are concerned (that is, there is a reasonable probability of their attaining satisfaction), that is mathematically not the case for others. The fallacy of the psychological model is its assumption that the ignorance of those in the present about the future necessarily means that future events are “open.” For many reasons, this assumption is false but persists simply because we don’t yet understand enough the core causes and effects.

      Bottom line: it’s terrific that someone is hopeful, so long as that emotional state is not then used as an expectation of the way others must feel about their own lives, or as a presumed model of the way the world actually works.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Aiah,

        I considered not publishing your comment, because it doesn’t seem to actually relate to Ebony’s comment. Ebony said that she experiences depression and suicidal thoughts, but that hope keeps her alive. And as you yourself note, it’s “absolutely terrific” that she feels hopeful. I agree with her reasoning, and I’m grateful that she and many others like her do feel hope. Hope is an antidote to suicidality.

        I also think you misunderstood Aiah’s comment. She’s not making a statement about “legal rights and personal freedoms concerning already culturally biased phenomena (like gender identity or marriage rights…),” as you imply in your comment. She’s making a statement about her own personal experience, and she’s saying that she hopes that others experience similar hope. I don’t know Ebony beyond the words she posted here, but her comment suggests she has a generous and compassionate spirit.

        It seems to me that your comment about hopelessness pertains more to situations of people with terminal illness, for whom there is no recognizable hope for recovery. I’d like to point out that research shows that most people with incurable terminal illness do not want to end their lives prematurely via suicide or other forms of hastened death. Isn’t that interesting?

        Ultimately, I decided to publish your comment, because I think it can stimulate important discussion and thought. I’m particularly interested in this statement by you: “The fallacy of the psychological model is its assumption that the ignorance of those in the present about the future necessarily means that future events are ‘open.'” Is there a reason why you would assume that ignorance of those in the present about the future necessarily means that future events are *not* open?

        I ask genuinely out of curiosity, not to be argumentative. I appreciate your contributing to the discussion, and I’d like to be sure I understand. Thank you.

    • Aiah Zohar says:

      Stacey, first, pardon me for replying to Ebony’s comment, but I saw no “reply” field under your comment to reply to it. I appreciate that it is not your intent to be argumentative; nor is it mine. First, I do not believe I took exception with the way Ebony herself feels about her own life experiences. And I sincerely congratulated her for feeling good about her circumstances.

      However, I did take exception to the assertion, “there’s always hope.” That is patently false. What humans call “hope” is our desire for events to transpire a certain way. There is no rigorously demonstrable reason that what we hope must come to pass, and considerable evidence that hope does not alter outcomes. Very many hopes do not come to fruition. But statistically, even if the probabilities of hope-odds were closely matched, this would be what a researcher would call poor predictive power. There would be little justification in believing “I hope X” presages the eventual passage of event-X. You can argue that hoping for something motivates behavior that may alter the odds of realizing what’s hoped for, but then hope is arguably not the causal factor, but a confounding factor for intent. And even then, what is intended–motivating someone to act–must be possible and doesn’t guarantee success. Curiously, intent and hope can be disjoint and yet lead to unhoped for outcomes in the favor of intent (what is intended predicts what happens rather than what is hoped for, assuming the event is actually possible).

      I do not agree that my argument is limited to patients with terminal cases. This is merely a natural consequence of probability. Obviously, if medicine predicts a certain physiological state is terminal, hoping otherwise is eventually recognizable as unreasonable. But the assumption that what is hoped for is reasonable when the means available to us to assess probable outcomes are crude is an argument of present ignorance, not cause-effect. The same patient who was counseled to be hopeful earlier, and was, is the same patient who today is labeled “terminal.” All that has changed is our ability to “see” the disease trajectory better, not the effect of hope on the disease process.

      I did not misunderstand Ebony’s comment. You are right that she is not addressing legal rights at all, but because her feelings and perspectives enjoy, as you have yourself here demonstrated, professional approval as “appropriate,” despite the lack of rigorous empirical substantiation (not of simple associations), they have come to occupy the legal and medical position of “correct,” and therefore alternative views and perspectives are not merely discouraged (which runs counter to the democratic process which relies on open information and discussion), but also carry punitive costs. So, yes, this kind of discussion that impinges on all citizens’ legal rights is critical, especially in the context that your own reply imposes. While it’s terrific that some people are hopeful, and while I agree with you that hope predicts the desire to continue living, it’s an affront to liberty that these perspectives should become national policy circumscribing others’ personal freedoms.

      You asked why I would “assume that ignorance of those in the present about the future necessarily means that future events are not open.” First, I only claimed that not knowing the future does not mean that all possibilities in the future are practically possible. That is a demonstrable fact, and it is also an assertion that ought to be addressed on its own merits without the distraction of another question. The assertion is also a natural limit on the rationality of hope. Unless my claim is proven false, “there’s always hope” is simply false.

      The question you ask, however, assuming the additional qualifier “some” (future events), is a logical complement to the claim I made. If multiple events are mutually exclusive, eventually some events become improbable (“opportunity cost”). Further, natural probability distributions are rarely equal. Someone may argue that one may be content with many of the possible outcomes such that it is not a problem that some are no longer possible, but there’s no natural reason that must be true for everyone. Moreover, it will still be false that hoping for something must make it come true.

      That I’m aware of, the encouragment of hope is not rigorously empirically evidenced as therapeutically effective. I’ve spent many years searching for the quantitative and physical evidence but haven’t come upon it. I’m open to reading research publications our team may have missed. As I see it, hope is not an intervention, but instead, a response to circumstances.

      Stacey, you point out that most terminal patients want to continue living. My clinical and research experiences corroborate that claim. Pardon me, but I don’t see how that alters the argument. I have never argued that anyone ought to be forced to accept a particular perspective, but rather that patients should enjoy autonomy to consider the myriad aspects of their lives external professionals simply never can and to make personal decisions that may differ greatly from the decisions their support professionals might make for themselves. This discussion now transpiring globally is critical because it concerns one of the most crucial personal liberties. And more and more nations around the world, and more and more US citizens are deciding in favor of personal liberty.

      Lastly, thank you for deciding to publish my earlier comment to Ebony. Again, it wasn’t meant to be mean-spirited, but rather generative. That said, it frankly frightens me, as a free citizen and a medical scientist and a physician, that some ideas that concern policy that purports to be based in science and to which all citizens are subject should be publically censorable simply because others find the ideas themselves offensive or disagree with the perspectives entailed. Sorry for the long reply.

    • Diego says:

      to Aiah Zohar,

      I want just to say that with your last comment (very, very well articulated) you really hit the mark from a rational, realistic, empirical, scientific point of view. To me (and maybe to other rationally oriented people) reality, even if sad, is always better than delusional wishful thinking, because in the end reality always wins.

      I didn’t like Stacey article but after reading her responses to some of the most deep and articulated comments and after reading, in “Why I Came Out of the (Suicide) Closet”, the fear of stigma from opinionated colleagues that she faced, I have much more respect of her opinions.
      I understand the difficult situation she faces as a therapist counseling suicidal people.

      In one of the comments I was referring to she writes “Many of the comments on this site have challenged my ideas and caused me to stretch my thinking.”; I want to be provocative and suggest that your comment should be one of them, maybe the best one, in my humble opinion.
      I’m disappointed she didn’t respond with a rational, realistic, empirical and scientific observation on par with yours… but maybe she can’t because the phrase “there is always hope” is theoretically and empirically false and “it will still be false that hoping for something must make it come true”. Sadly, she can’t change it…

  75. Lily says:

    And what if I am such a fuck-up who did poorly in school, has no realistic nor affordable access to quality college, strongly resents employer demand for degrees that are expensive and unnessesary, fucks up on what few jobs are available to me and thus burns bridges and gets bad references that affect future employment, can’t keep/get anything gainful, is transgender and desperately wants gender reassignment but cant seem to access doctors for it, is looking at losing any real healthcare access due the clowns in Government, is still stuck living at home with limited time before being cast to the street, all the while being months away from age 30… An age I had expected to be independant. I don’t have time in terms of support to fix anything, late blooming to this degree looks awful on a resume, my references suck (and that’s irreversable), and I literally cannot realistically foresee any betterment in my near future. I can fantasize about it, but it would seem I simply wasn’t born to move the world. I am naturally a rude diva-type bitch without meaning to be and Im usually oblivious to the fact until it becomes a professional faux pas that gets me fired. I will end up a leech on society with no means to climb out. I will not have a beautiful lube of the story i crave and dream about… No ultra-modern luxe place, no total overhaul off my car, no glamourous and gainful job with plenty of work/life balance while young enough to really enjoy it. I had potential once and it was squandered. I have no good future, just a shityy, tumultuous one that will never give me joy. Tell me why i should keep going on. Why would you dare think this is temporary and resolvable? It will take more work and time than I can give and cost money I can never have without massive, crippling debt. Imagine yourself in my shoes. Will you not want to end the suffering, too?

    • Anonymous says:

      Sounds to me like you need a mentor more than anything else. Help you get your priorities straight. Having conflicting values can screw your life up royally but can also be corrected in a short time. And the evidence of it working can come almost immediately. Improving one self can be a goal to enjoy working on for a lifetime.

    • Liz says:

      I’m the same as you. I’m 34 and have screwed up my past so royally that I don’t even know what to do about it. Some of it wasn’t even my fault–years of illness, being robbed, depression, lawsuits against me. My family abandoned me during this hard time, and my father died. But a lot of it was simply me mismanaging my life, moving to other countries, and otherwise being a dumb fuck.

      The future leaves me no hope–I won’t go into the details, but there is no biological basis to assume anything will ever improve at this point. I have a shitty personality, like you said, “rude diva-type bitch”. I can’t make friends, I can’t make romantic partnerships, I can’t even get anyone to have sex with me. I’ll never get what I really wanted in life either. No chance. Add to that the overall decline of my country…sigh.

      What pisses me off about this suicide prevention stuff. is that it’s all geared toward teenagers. What about middle-aged folks who have had nothing but a string of bad luck and agony and who have limited chance of ever recouping these losses? Am I seriously supposed to look at my life and somehow be grateful for it? It seems like such a load of crock to me! Maybe OTHER people get happiness, but I’m clearly not one of them. I’ve no desire to continue here. THIS IS BULLSHIT.

      Well, idk if that’s relateable to you, but that’s how I feel anyway. I thought I could recognize the thought processes you’re undergoing…I go through them every single day anymore.

    • John says:

      @Liz @Lily
      I am in a similar situation as the two of you, a 28 year old man who never quite fit into what the “norm” is perceived to be and has run into terrible circumstances too. From the death of my loving mother when 17 to never forming a true loving relationship with a woman who cares about me. Life is anything but enjoyable or easy.

      Yes, each day is incredibly hard to to persevere through, knowing that a lot of what I do is seemingly in vain despite the best efforts I take to better myself; I have studied for nearly 6.5 years through graduate school from engineering to education, to have a career where I could make a difference in peoples’ lives, I was never given the opportunity to teach… Now, I am unemployed, spending a lot of time contemplating life, observing others pass me by and spending as little as possible while taking many hikes in nature.

      Like the Anonymous poster said, a mentor is the best answer to your dire struggle. This mentor, if you don’t have family or friends, could be a counselor; there are wonderful people who will help you, many counselors would be willing to waive fees at times and point you to places that are free to live/get help if you are in dire need; there are more good people out there than it may seem, it’s just the monsters are the most vocal.

      Your lives do matter, even if you have walked directly through Hell throughout your lives; even though I don’t know you, I can feel your pain when reading your words, I care about your well being, even if I am a stranger posting on this forum.

      Please carry on, meet a compassionate mentor and find peace; I fight my demons each day, struggling, but I think I’ll win, somehow.

  76. She's alive says:

    I love life and have a lot to live for. I have been through a lot, including a long-term stay in a psychiatric intensive care unit.
    I have been suicidal many times and have attempted suicide before. Every time, after, I am ashamed and bewildered.
    See, my mental health is what causes it. Issues with medication causes it but I Don’ Want To Die.
    I don’t speak for everyone but, these are the reasons I am grateful for suicide prevention. And for everyone commenting that you should have a right to it, if someone really wants to, there is no stopping it.

  77. Brittany Odle says:

    I am here for you <333 you can email jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com nothings worth killing yourself you matter <3333333 I care for you.

  78. Brittany Odle says:

    Remember you matter. There is Nothing in this world that is worth taking your precious life: death, being in debt, getting hurt, losing someone, its not worth it, its all temporary amd you will get through it. Its a phase. I will care if you die :(((((( please Just loveeee yourself and love others. ♡♡♡ forgive yourself and do something for someone. Email me jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com because you matter and I care for you. I am here to listen to you, i am here to cry with you. I have empathy for you i tried to kill myself many times but praying helped me. I am here to pray for you. YOU MATTER!!!! ♡♡♡♡♡♡

  79. Jude says:

    Linda I feel the same. Always here to talk

  80. Cole says:

    Put it this way– People who believe in abortion say a woman has the right to do what she wants with her own body..

    I say– DON’T WE ALL HAVE THE RIGHT TO DO WHAT WE WANT WITH OUR OWN BODY?

    If I want to end my life, that’s MY CHOICE & my own body.

  81. Matthew says:

    I can relate to a lot of what’s been said here. I’m 43 and a writer. That probably says it all. I’m broke, alone and a total failure who’s addicted to the craft of creative writing and delusional to think I’ll ever succeed at it. When, in reality, I’m an untalented loser who loathes his existence.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Matthew,

      It’s painful to witness, even in these few words, your hatred for yourself. I have no doubt that your own pain is profound. Have you tried to get help? You don’t have to be alone with this these painful feelings.

      You can talk to your physician, or to a therapist, or to a religious leader if you’re religious, and so on. If you want to get help anonymously and for free, check out the Resources page for places you can do so by phone, text, email, or online chat.

    • Someone Somewhere says:

      I have huge dreams (I’m no writer but my dreams are artistic too. I’ve been crushed and downed and mocked and humiliated by others for having them so much that I hesitate to even tell anyone what they are) and man can I ever relate to this post. I share the same sentiments about my own dreams, the irony being they’re the only thing that I ever bother waking up for. Take my dreams away and I have nothing. I’m just getting older and more washed up year after year after year.

      This world definitely isn’t a friendly place to artistic types… it’s even worse now.

  82. Melissa says:

    Suicide in my opinion has its own definition for people. Everyone is different so certain situations are different. In my own situation I would because there is no help with losing a child. Its forever painful. No professional can help they just use medication. Now im not suicidal im learning to cope but the human body can take so much pain.

  83. Elena says:

    I just am tired. I’m in a bad marriage. But it’s not just the marriage or the loneliness. It’s everything. I have a daughter. I am so proud of her and I love her dearly. But next year she will be in college. My life has been so painful so hard and I just can’t anymore. I don’t have it in me to do this for my daughter anymore. I don’t want her to hate me or feel she had anything to do with it. No matter how many degrees I get I’m stuck in crappy jobs. I have a criminal record so my options are limited. No matter how much therapy and reading I do, I just am attracted to men that will suck the life from me. No matter how hard I try to maintain some form of stability my life is chaos. Chaos I create. Originally by June of 2018 I was considering killing myself by driving off a cliff. Now I’m researching life after death and may do it sooner. My life has been completely bad, it’s more painful then most. I made and make stupid choices and will pay for lifetime. I’m doom to work in a warehouse forever. It’s time I save myself the energy and go.

    • Crushed & Broken says:

      Hi Elena, I can feel your pain. I myself attempted to commit suicide back in 2015. I saw that it really hurt my son. I left him a note with my bank cards and info and told him to just keep them and don’t spend it all. When he came home and didn’t see me he became very worried. I didn’t tell him what I was about to do. I’ll share my story real quick. At the time when I was pressing to go forward I kept getting closed doors. It seems that I had to fight hard for everything. I was staying with my mother at the time and was expecting very important mail. My mother actually took the letter and hid it for her own selfish reasons. That took me over the edge because I questioned myself “why, why would she do that knowing I’m going through a hard time?” At that moment I became numb and wanted to kill myself. My oldest son cut off his relationship with me because I left his father due to bad treatment and started over in another relationship. I had worked so very hard to give both my sons the best and thought by leaving, I could give him the life he dreamt of but his father brainwashed him into thinking I was the bad guy. My exhusband joined a motorcycle club the 1st month he brought his bike. He cheated on me since we dated & was just caught having an affair. He wasn’t a good provider & I did everything and became tired. I gave him the option to choose between his family and the club so he decided to stay in the club, so I left. I didn’t want to but I felt like a prisoner in my own home. In the next relationship the guy tricked me and betrayed me even worse. I always worked temp jobs hoping to become permanent somewhere but never got hired. I became very sick with stress and lost so much weight but I kept pushing. It seemed the more I pushed the more things became worse & my exhusband partied more and got remarried the month after we divorced. He turned his back on my youngest son and I became a single parent. I had to move back to my mother’s house and that was so awful. So 1 day I wrote a note and planned how I was going to kill myself. I was going to buy alcohol and take it with my medications and go inside of Panera bread to do it. As I was on my way walking to Panera, I found a beige wallet inside of a shopping cart with like $350. Right there I knew it was a sign from God to go back home. So I walked home but still contemplated to kill myself. I began drinking and taking pills and told my brother and friend I was on my way out. All of a sudden there was a knock on the door and it was the police and ambulance. I was admitted in the hospital for 5 days. All they did was give me meds and sent me back out here in this world to fight alone. I guess they thought the meds were going to help but what about my problems I was facing? To this day things became way worse. I don’t wanna talk too long but I promised myself I would never try to commit suicide ever again. When my son comes home and I’m not there, he calls me asking where am I because I guess he’s afraid that I left or killed myself so I don’t want him to ever have to experience that again. Right now I feel so numb and hurt and I began to develop a relationship with God by prayer and worship every morning. I feel he’s not answering my prayers and has truly turned his back on me. It’s ok because I will never give up on god but I question a lot and it seems like all the bad guys and people that do wrong are winning. All I can advise is to tell you to hold on! I always hear that the bad days don’t last forever but I somehow can’t see that and just try to stay hopeful. I just want God to naturally take me but will never kill myself. Killing yourself will hurt your son/daughter tremendously. Please just take the good and hold onto that. I have my 5lb Yorkie whom I love for 10 years. Honestly I feel he’s the only thing that loves me. Not even my own sons love me but it’s ok. So please, for me, hold on and I will do the same

    • Anonymous says:

      Eckhart Tolle – The Power of Now. Please give the first chapter of this book a chance. It explains how your mind is a bit like being possessed by a paranormal entity. I know this sounds mad, and possibly is. I am not a genius obviously but Eckhart is. Please give it a try, go for three chapters.

  84. Dave says:

    I am a 33 year old male. I have been suffering terribly from depression for a few years now. My ex fiance recently broke up with me. I have no job and live at home with my parents. Everyday I wake up hoping I will die on that day. I hate myself and my life. I just want to end the pain. My life is hopeless and I get no enjoyment from it. I just want peace.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Dave, I hope you will talk with someone about how you feel. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255 (TALK). Also please check out the Resources page at http://www.speakingofsuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp for places you can talk to somebody by phone, text, email, or online chat. You don’t have to hurt like this forever, and you also don’t have to die to avoid hurting like this.

    • Steve says:

      Dave, I feel your suffering mate. Remember you at least are living with your parents. There is love there. I live alone and have been feeling like this for almost 10 years now. Talk to your parents, you don’t want to continue on this route. For me I feel I’ve gone too far and can’t see it improving. When I do see a glimmer of hope the door shuts. I hope you get the help you need. Take care matey.

    • Anonymous says:

      Eckhart Tolle – Power of Now. Explains why your mind is not your friend and what you can do about it. Best Wishes.

  85. Mom says:

    Oh Stacey, I’d LOVE to hear you rationalize this. In March, a woman named Kathy Myers in Colorado obtained physician-assisted suicide for her end-stage COPD which was caused by being a lifelong smoker.

    So let me get this straight. You can spend your whole life smoking, which by now, we all KNOW (including Kathy), that it inevitably leads to disease, suffering, and in many cases death. So, in other words, smoking is officially a socially-acceptable and legally-sanctioned form of suicide. Hey, go for it! Smoke your life away and you won’t have to deal with the consequences of your actions!

    By contrast, take a person like me who was born with hereditary depression and had a traumatic childhood which compounded it, in which symptoms began before puberty. Endogenous depression lasting for decades causes INTENSE, unimaginable suffering, and a nonexistent quality of life. So a person in my case, through no fault of my own, is expected to live a life of endless suffering despite trying every treatment under the sun to no avail (years of therapy – CBT/DBT/EMDR, medications, ECT, alternative therapies, the list is a mile long), but a person who KNOWINGLY caused their highly preventable suffering and disease is offered a peaceful, painless death out in the open where family members can be with them in their final moments?

    Guess I should have started a 2-pack a day habit at 12 rather than being committed to health and wellness my whole life, and spending decades and tens of thousands of dollars on trying to heal myself of an illness which I didn’t CHOOSE. Why are sufferers of long-term, untreatable mental illness any less deserving of a peaceful exit from their incurable disease? Because they aren’t of sound mind? I’d argue that someone who smokes their life away isn’t exactly of sound mind either, so out the window goes that argument. A friend – who coincidentally is a chain smoker of extraordinary poor health – once accosted me for being “ABNORMAL!” for my wishes to end this lifelong torment and agony that I’ve tried SO HARD to heal myself from. I think it’s “ABNORMAL!!!” to be a chain smoker who takes shit care of oneself and can get a peaceful exit from the world once they start suffering from their poor decisions. I get how addicting smoking is, and hey, maybe for some that addiction is incurable just like for some with mental illness, it’s incurable. So how in the hell is this okay?

    I’m happy for Kathy for being able to have a peaceful, reliable, self-determined end of life. It’s a basic human right that should be available to EVERYONE, not just on an arbitrary basis based on society’s inability to understand the severity of suffering and exhaustion that comes with a lifelong uphill battle against an unrelenting depression. I can’t wait to leave this incredibly absurd world.

    • Someone Somewhere says:

      THIS. Just, THIS.

      I’ve even had smokers (and overweight people who are addicted to junk food, not that I’m judging them but I mean, dear god the irony) tell me the same thing if I tell them how life just isn’t for me. The only reason it’s legally acceptable to consume things that are potentially deadly such as tobacco and alcohol not to mention junk food (hell even stuff considered “health” food) that has ingredient lists that might stump a chemistry major is because the government stands to gain while other substances that do far less damage (if any) are still illegal depending on where you live or at least taboo though that’s besides the point. My own father died almost 12 years ago from a stroke… I came to an epiphany recently that he didn’t kill himself directly, but he did ostensibly by refusing to take care of himself even though he had warning signs all over (from bad body acne to borderline-narcolepsy to being rather overweight) telling him to take care of himself or pay the consequences. How am I any worse for wanting to die because I’m too genetically messed up being mentally and physically weak, butt-ugly looking like a keebler elf and rebellious to function in this world and I can barely even scrape by with the bare minimum of part-time work (if that) and did even worse when in school, only living for perhaps impossible dreams? Shouldn’t the world be happy if I killed myself for a defective, “lazy” dreamer willingly taking care of himself by dying than being a leech to the clogged-up overpopulated system at best?

      Though I don’t smoke Kurt Vonnegut was a smoker and had a great way of putting it “I am hopelessly addicted to cigarettes. I keep hoping the things will kill me. A fire at one end and a fool at the other.”

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Someone Somewhere,

        You communicate very poignantly, and powerfully, the depths of your feelings of hopelessness. I hope you will consider talking to someone about all this. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255 (TALK) at any time if you are in the U.S. Also check out the Resources page for more places to anonymously get help.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      “Mom,”

      I’m sorry to hear of all the suffering you have experienced, suffering so intense that you want to leave this world. It sounds like you’ve tried a lot of different kinds of therapy and are still hurting. Maybe one of the places on the Resources page could help you, even if only a little; I hope you’ll try.

  86. Linda says:

    So lonely,all the people who truly loved me have died.
    So I feel I want to die too,the loneliness is unbearable

  87. James C says:

    I found your article very self serving, short sighted and narrow minded. If people want to die that’s their free will and they are entitled to it. We didn’t have the choice whether to be born, but we do have the choice when to die and that’s a wonderful gift. No one in society should shame another if they decide to take their own life, it really isn’t any of their concern/ you can never know another’s struggles enough to tell them whether they should keep living. Stay in your lane, stop being so judgmental of others if they decide they want to commit suicide, your concern really has no bearing on what they are going through. You are being self absorbed and despotic in your attempt to dictate what others should do. Sometimes the kindest and most rational thing to do is to let someone end their own pain. Pragmatism and the hope for a more peaceful existence can manifest itself as suicide.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      James,

      I’m sorry that you view my attempts to help others so negatively. I understand your argument philosophically, but realistically I also know that many people who were feeling abjectly suicidal are now grateful to be alive today. And they are thankful to those who helped them to not act on their suicidal thoughts. (For just one powerful example, read the story of Kevin Hines.) I hope you will consider those people, too, when making your argument against suicide prevention.

      Thank you for contributing to the discussion and for giving me this opportunity to address what no doubt many other readers are thinking, too.

  88. im_id says:

    no, I know in terms of some others I never suffered enough , I just feel like I am an outsider no one understand , I am such a failure in every aspect I thought of trying ,ok I am tired I don’t want to try anymore , actually I can’t try anymore I can’t tolerate someone telling me I have no fucking future , ok suck life I don’t need it

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      im_id,

      Are you getting any help? It sounds like you’re believing the worst edicts of your mind, without entertaining other possibilities.

      If you’re in the U.S., please consider calling 1.800.273.8255 (TALK), which is a 24-hour hotline. Wherever you are, you can check out the Resources page on this site at http://www.speakingofsuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp.

      I hope you will reach out to someone, but someone who is supportive and constructive, not toxic to you!

  89. Cameron says:

    The world was never meant to give second chances. Once you blow it, you blow it. Of course this isn’t really the only reason where there could be rational suicide, as often the bad things that happen in our lives are due to other actions we had no control over. I want to die myself. I feel that I have no purpose, and that I’m a burden on society. A lot of people make claims like this up, but I really can’t find anything positive about myself except for the little things. What I’m trying to say is, rational suicide can be indeed rational. Ending ones suffering will only help them, if its not possible by treatment while they’re alive. I do however think that without a proper diagnosis of the person’s mental disorder it would be irrational.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      “A lot of people make claims like this up, but I really can’t find anything positive about myself except for the little things.”

      The little things are no small thing, Cameron! Especially when they are positive things about yourself.

      On a different note, I think you will find that many people have been granted second – and even third, and fourth, and 20th – chances. If you want to read more about them, check out these sites:

      Stories of Hope and Recovery

      Live Through This

      Also, it might help you to listen to the story of Kevin Hines, who jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge and survived: I Jumped Off the Golden Gate Bridge.

      I hope that you feel more hope for yourself, and for life, soon.

  90. Joe says:

    In the last 15 yr i have lost my son and his mother to a drunk driver. I’ve lost majority of my family. The other day i found out that a very dear friend had been killed. I have few friends, next to nothing to show for in 31 yr. Im legally retarded in the state i live in. I have been depressed since i was 6 when my sisters were taken from me. Every person i meet is using me for something be it everything i have or just what they can take. Relationships dont happen since forever, and im not the nicest person but thats the end result of a shit stained life that wasnt wanted in the first place.
    No amount of therapy has ever helped me. The one thing that haz been there my whole life is the concept that i can end it any time. That has been the only thing thats ever been true.

  91. Vikas says:

    i want to die i dont have a job never had a girlfriend and now my career is like over its just over now i cant earn enough to have a family i am gonna die alone im pathetic i always make bad decisions people are gonna laugh at me i will become a joke in society so i guess its better to go nobody is gonna miss me….

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Vikas,

      I’m sorry you’re feeling so hopeless. Please check out the Resources page for places where you can get help by phone, text, email, or online chat. And remember, just because your mind is saying all these bad things about you doesn’t mean they’re true.

  92. Anonymous says:

    No. It should never be prevented for the people that do have a genuine reason to die. This is because the average of their feelings is very much in the negative and so it is clearly preferable to go. That’s rationality in this debate. You don’t really love someone selflessly if you would rather them suffer for a lifetime now do you? ‘Mentally-normal, helpful’ people are sick. People may change their mind about suicide to die of other causes. However, obviously they’re likely to live a life of guilt for their continued desire to die, hurting the selfish people left behind. The reality is sad.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Anonymous,

      I understand that you feel strongly about this, but I have a question: How do you know?

      That is, how do you know that the feelings of someone with a “genuine reason to die” will remain “in the negative”?

      How do you know that someone will “suffer for a lifetime”?

      How do you know that people who are suicidal and choose not to die by suicide are “likely to live a life of guilt for their continued desire to die”?

      I don’t think you – or I, or anyone – can know any of those things.

      I do know, however, many people (and of many people) who were certain that they would never feel better, or would never want to live, and who now feel very differently. If you’re interested in reading the stories of just a small fraction of those people, here are some places to start:

      Stories of Hope and Recovery

      Live Through This

      Suicide survivors of Reddit, what was your first conscious thought after you realized that you hadn’t succeeded? (Note that this one contains graphic descriptions of suicide attempts, but the words of the survivors will, for many people, outweigh the risk for triggers.)

      Good luck to you, Anonymous!

  93. Anonymous says:

    i tried kill myself twice but both times someone found me and take me to hospital
    i don’t really wanna be here, i’m alone, i don’t enjoy life,
    i’m thinking for the third time but hopefully this time no one can find me

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      So sad that you are suffering, Anonymous. Please look here for places where you can get help by phone, text, email, or online chat.

    • Rob Z says:

      I know the pain. If it weren’t for my cats, I’d be done. For now, find the thing, people, something that’s stopped you so far and grasp that.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        So true, Rob, cats (and other pets) are many people’s reason for living. And even if they can’t have cats, they can help rescue them or volunteer at a shelter! It only takes one thing.

        Thanks for sharing your great advice.

    • Joseph says:

      I can promise you that no matter how deep the trials of this life may seem, you are not alone, and one day, the light will come.

    • Reverend Ane says:

      You are not a lone, many times I have been told I should kill myself, I was wasting space and I am still here a Reverend and a mom so when you feel life is not worth it remember God chose your life and he has big plans for you. Who knows you may be our next president, or the person who cure AIDS, or cancer, even Parkinson.

  94. Lisa P says:

    I’m 57, and I’ve spent my entire life wishing it would end. Abusive father, indifferent mother, a sister who grew up knowing it was perfectly okay to beat me up too, because in our house, I was to blame for everything. I haven’t lived in that house for decades, my father died in 2002, and still I can’t get rid of the ghosts of self-hatred and self-loathing that I grew up with. I’ve spent the last 20 years on meds for bipolar, but I was never bipolar, just unlucky enough to have a bad psychiatrist and no ability to see through the drug fog. Now the new doc says I have avoidant personality disorder, two rounds of TMS later, I’m still as chronically depressed as I was since age 4, and SSRI’s don’t work for me. I haven’t worked in 20 years, and have zero self-esteem or self-worth, because my life has no value. I’m worth more dead only because of a life insurance policy, but of course, even though I’ve been paying on it for more than 20 years, I’ve got the only policy on the planet with a permanent suicide clause in it, so I couldn’t even get that right. No way out for me from my misery, because I’d just become a bigger financial burden…

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Lisa,

      It’s unfair how much some people suffer. I feel that way reading your comment. I hope you are able to get help that truly does help you. If you want to talk with someone by phone, email, chat, or online text, please check out here a list of places where you can do that.

    • Anonymous says:

      I have the same problem and diagnosis. Abusive father, indifferent mother and also abusive sister. Some people should be sterilised to prevent from inflicting such horrors on their unsuspecting children.

    • Joe Blow says:

      I’m BY NO means encouraging you to commit suicide. I think it’s generally an awful choice to have to make, but nonetheless, it is a basic human right even if society tries to tell you that it knows better than you the value of your own life, or worse, that you don’t even have ownership of your life. It sounds like you’ve tried everything which I can completely relate to, as well as the abusive/neglectful upbringing. I do hope you find something that helps alleviate your suffering. Have you tried ECT as a last resort? It does work for some people when nothing else has worked.

      Getting to the point of my response to you, I believe you are incorrect about your life insurance policy, assuming you reside in the USA. State insurance laws supersede insurance clauses, and I would check with an insurance lawyer (or just post a question on JustAnswer.com – it’ll cost $5-10 to get an answer from a practicing and licensed insurance attorney in your state) about your policy because I’ve been a licensed insurance broker/financial advisor, and I’ve never heard of such a thing outside of the standard 2 year contestability period (sometimes that period is only one year, depending on state, even for suicide). Your insurance company can have whatever clauses it wants to have, but if your state law dictates something else (which in many cases they do), the clause doesn’t mean a darn thing. Of course, insurance companies always bank on people not being aware of their rights and this is how they literally get away with keeping millions and millions of dollars per year in death benefits that legally should have been awarded but weren’t because families just took the insurance company’s automatic denial as the final word rather than consulting an attorney.

      Here’s an article that discusses the topic: http://time.com/money/3117698/how-life-insurance-policies-deal-with-suicide/

      • mmmokhtar says:

        let us start from the worst case ,say a man has no job ,no income , no home , no family , suffering a permanent illness and can not pay for medicines , starving ,not insured , cursed and humiliated by every one because of his extreme poverty , if a man like this is thinking of sucide do you still call it an awful decision to commit sucide?

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        mmmokhtar,

        I don’t think there’s a formula for when suicide is justified or not. There are many people who suffer the exact fate you describe, and they do not die by suicide (or even want to). And there are physically healthy people who live in affluence and die by suicide. Suicide and suffering are both mysterious in who they claim and who they spare. Resilience and joy are equally mysterious. The amazing thing is we really have no idea what comes next, in life or beyond.

  95. Anonymous says:

    It’s considered “humane” to “put an animal out of their suffering”… but why not those of us who are also suffering so much mental anguish every day? Where’s the “humanity” in that?

  96. Anonymous says:

    is there any way to die easy with sure results? , that may help suicide thinkers , i can not understand why some people want the other people to struggle and suffer life , it is only sadism isn’t it , OK if you want some body to live with that insistence then help him out of his sufferings if you can not help then shut your mouth, this law against sucide should be eliminated if we can not help these suicidal people

    • Joseph says:

      Life is a great blessing, even if full of suffering. There is always something to cling to, and that is faith and hope. Even if it is hard to see, like the sun when our side of the earth is turned from it, the light will come.

  97. Anonymous says:

    Epilepsy sucks like life

  98. Brittany Odle says:

    Remember you matter. There is Nothing in this world that is worth taking your precious life: death, being in debt, getting hurt, losing someone, its not worth it, its all temporary amd you will get through it. Its a phase. I will care if you die :(((((( please Just loveeee yourself and love others. ♡♡♡ forgive yourself and do something for someone. Email me jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com
    because you matter and I care for you. I am here to listen to you, i am here to cry for you. I am here to pray for you. YOU MATTER!!!! ♡♡♡♡♡♡

  99. Lily says:

    Some of the posts on this site made me realise that my own issues are not so bad. I hope that all those suffering are having a better day.
    I have lived with anxiety, on/off depression, and other issues since I was 13. I am now 51 years old.
    I have good times, bad times, been optimistic and pessimistic. I have wanted to die at times and other times cried so much because I did not want to die, as I loved life too much.
    I am scared of death. I think it might be about how I will feel before it happens, if I happen to be awake. I am not scared of afterwards.
    Being 51 and a young for my age and healthy person, I have a feeling that I may last until quite an old age, and people in my family have tended to live to old ages.
    I want to live but not as I feel now. Compared to some others I have it good, but there are also troubling issues which have made me as I am including genetics.
    When I hear of people ending their lives I am saddened, but also if a person is very unhappy then who can blame them. Who can criticise? It is a personal and private choice.
    Life is a crock of crap for many people in this world, no matter how much they try to improve things. The only way is to never giving up trying to improve, in order to get out of the situation and build a good as it can be life. I imagine having some horrendous illness can make this impossible,but some people do find joy in some things even when very unwell. Don’t they?
    Even in some of my darkest and bleakest hours, there was always a point where I thought “Ok, so what happens now, I suppose I just have to carry on” The next day or however long it took, I would often feel so much better. This is what scares me about suicide. I have had the blackest and bleakest of times, but there have been such happy and perfect times too, that I am glad I have experienced.
    I often think, that if I were to end my life, what if on my way to that point of death, I regretted my actions, and it was too late to do anything about it. Maybe I was trying to end my life because I had been unhappy for so long or just on that day, but by ending my life I was ending any chance of experiencing any possible happiness too.
    No one can rule out happiness ever happening.
    I find personal happiness,, contentment and fulfillment in caring for my dog and cats and petitioning for animal rights. That makes me feel better. To some that may be nothing, but for me it does help me, however I do feel that my life has no meaning, so I try to give it meaning. I do think helping others is the best way to do this.
    People’s life circumstances can change for the better and some people seem to live a crappy life all their life.
    We either try to improve even if it is just by doing 1 positive thing a day, no matter how small that may be, or just be here contemplating suicide and life and its meaning, which is what I tend to do a lot of.
    I have an amazing daughter who is doing so well in her life and career. She is everything that I am not. I am immensely proud of her. I would hate for her life to be ruined, which it would, as we adore each other, if I ended my life. I cannot put her through that pain.
    I just don’t understand why I am meant to be here. Maybe I was meant to have a child who is doing very well.
    Years ago people died earlier. At 51 years old I feel like it is all over.
    I am still to scared to end my life, and if I were told tomorrow that I have a terminal disease, I know that I would be devastated, and wanting to live. Maybe I will always feel in a limbo state until it is my time.
    My thoughts are with people on this site. Some of your stories brought me to tears. I hope that you feel a little better.
    Please don’t give up on life easily. Compared to being dead, I think being alive with its suffering and occasional times of contentment is better than death. Death will find us all one day anyhow regardless, so….

  100. Hayley says:

    I am considering suicide. I am in my 50’s, and at the peak of my work experience and capacity to enrich and educate the next generation- but because I am an “old woman,” I am considered to be useless. Without a use, I am nothing, and there really is no reason to continue consuming needed resources. I will make my decision in the next few weeks.

    • J says:

      I do hope you will reconsider. Please read some of these articles. I found it interesting that such a high percentage of suicidal survivors wanted to live. Maybe the feeling of uselessness comes from your occupation or those you spend a great deal of time with. Sounds like you are an educator? Maybe you could be educating older adults? I don’t know, but it would seem that everyone needs educating, no matter what their age. I am a 59 year old female, though I am not (and you are not) an “old woman”. Have a good 30 years ahead of us! Hope to hear from you again soon. 🙂

    • Rob Z says:

      Reach out to me. I feel the same – I have much to offer, but no one wants me at all. I understand your position, 100%, really. I’d be dead now, but my cats need me. They are my thread that keeps me going.

    • Joseph says:

      I promise you that you matter. We are are God’s literal children, and you are a beloved Daughter of God. He cares for you and loves you. I promise you that hope is there to find. The world will suffer a great loss if you leave us.

  101. Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

    I’ve received a lot of requests to re-open the comments for this and other posts on the site. It has been a rich and lively, if at times challenging, conversation. May it continue!

  102. Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

    I’m sorry, folks, the time has come for me to shut down the comments for this post. Thank you to all who shared your thoughts here. I appreciate your having shared your very personal and painful stories. It’s unfair how much suffering there is in the world, and I hope that life does get better for each of you.

    If you are having thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255 (TALK). You can also find many resources for other places to call, text, or email for help on the Resources page of this site, at speakingofsuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp. Thank you.

  103. Veronica Horton says:

    The act of existing is not benign to other beings; anyone who’s not going to adopt a strictly vegan diet and basically go off and live in a cave somewhere is alive through killing other beings; your home was once wilderness, anything manufactured that you own required destruction of habitat and life, you can’t walk without crushing insects. For someone to prevent a being who wants to die from dying, they’re forcing that person to continue destruction of other life, the other life which, presumably, wants to live.

    • Anonymous says:

      How intense and Truthful. I can’t quite grasp the origins of life and understand it’s meaning. I hang on to the love I feel for the TRUTH and my loved ones, that’s the only reason I hang on to each day with little desire for it’s boredem and ugliness. I feel for you and your pain. I wish that we as living beings can find some meaning to this madness we call life.

  104. Brittany Odle says:

    I am here if you want to talk. Email me Jesuscaresforyou777@yahoo.com. i love you guys ♡♡♡♡

  105. Aiah Z says:

    I found this site as I was searching the Internet for information on self determination. Most of what I would add to this discussion has already been covered by others. As a woman, I wonder that I can terminate a life growing inside me based on others’ volatile opinions about what constitutes “viable life,” but I cannot terminate my own life. Whom do I belong to that someone else’s feelings, opinions, and perceptions are more important than my own as far as the continuance or termination of my life is concerned? I can make all manner of so-called horrible life errors, and society tells me that they are all my responsibility. That is the cost, I’m told, of being an adult. I can smoke. I can over-indulge in alcohol. I unhealthful dietary choices. I can engage in unprotected sex with many, many high-risk partners. Once I’m a legal adult, I can refuse to continue my education or get a job. I can become homeless, suffer the sexual and other physical depredations of others, and die slowly and torturously. All these things, though nearly everyone agrees they’re unwise choices–mistakes, I’m free to do. Why? Because I’m a legal adult and I am responsible for my own life, terribly “mistakes” and all. The regrets of others who’ve pursued, or been on these paths, never justify another forcing me to act “wisely.”

    Yet I cannot end my own life. Why do the suicidal deserve special protections, while the vast majority of society’s derelict do not? Just about everyone who matters–friends, family, politicians, doctors, lawyers, judges, police…–tells the societally lost they made mistakes and must now pay for them. Many of them will die painfully, abandoned, and that’s just life. But I cannot end my own life, so you seem to argue, Stacy, for my own “good”? How is that reasoning at all consistent with our culture’s principles of personal autonomy and responsibility?

    Speaking, too, as a licensed physician, even when I am confident a patient would benefit from additional treatment, I cannot force her or him to accept treatment. Even when the prognosis with treatment is statistically “good,” I can only present patients data–survival rates by years from diagnosis, side effects from treatment… Even if death is imminent without treatment, I cannot impose my will on a (non-minor) patient. So I do not believe the justification mental health gives, as you have here, Stacy, that acting against patients’ wills is justified based on the clinician’s superior knowledge of the disease state, or on the patient’s lack of clear thinking, or on the regret others who’ve attempted an act but failed at it later express over having attempted at all. At the root of the unique treatment modalities for mental health, in particular suicidal ideation, is an unjustifiable belief–not scientific fact–that life is always better than death. Other scholars in philosophy and medicine have written broadly on why this viewpoint is fallacious and never objective. Just as several European countries have finally concluded that life value can only be determined by a person living life, the rest of the world will eventually follow. The modern mental health therapeutic belief system is wholly untenable since it relies, like religion, on others believing the same principles as clinicians and mental health policy lobbyists–all who have a clear stake in the game.

    Lastly, on a practical note, study after study links quality of social life to depression risk. We’re all advised to have healthy and sufficient connections with others we care about and who care about us. But, who doesn’t want quality social relationships? A mentor of mine from my residency commented about the health protection of friendships that what counselors usually fail to acknowledge is that every relationship requires two people. There are very many reasons outside an individual’s control for her potential isolation. Clinical psychology fails to address how persistent these may be despite therapy, drugs, or other interventions. You can only hope to change an individual, not the others she must interact with. So the clinicians who are adamantly against the right of the patient to choose death, will they commit to being with each patient throughout the week, the day, the night, when loneliness sets in and these people feel abandoned and desperate? Can the clinicians guarantee that whatever treatment-du-jour will overcome the early-life formative experiences we know literally mold neurology so that these patients feel radically different, more inclined to stay alive? Will clinicians guarantee patients’ communities will put aside racism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, ageism, classism, scathing prejudice based on body habitus, or any of the other myriad prejudices that isolate over a lifetime? Or will clinicians be there, day after day, to provide the intimacy of a hug, holding those who need frequent reassurance? Or can clinicians guarantee a more equitable or hospitable world in general–especially regarding the sometimes monstrously callous or patently malignant mental health system itself? I think not. So, if clinicians cannot guarantee sufficient quality of life we understand is so crucial to “mental health,” neither should they be entitled to condemn the humans they cannot help to lives patients actually living those lives find to be hellish isolation and hopelessness simply because of clinicians’ assessments of their own lives, life in general, or even other patients’ lives.

    The debate over the right to end our own lives is not a matter of medicine or so-called mental health. We already know this since every day patients whose imminent deaths could be forestalled by medical intervention are permitted to reject medical care, and insurance companies are entitled, based on finances, to reject necessary procedures the medical literature tells us are likely to extend patients’ lives significantly. The debate over the right to end our own lives is shockingly rooted in biased value systems–“shockingly” because other people in this arena uniquely get to command otherwise legal adults not to act on our own bodies. To me, there is no greater a contradiction to the concept of personal freedom than this.

    • Mom says:

      Thank you so much for this. I would have loved to see a response from Stacey, but clearly, your logic and reasoning is far too sound for the canned “but what if it gets better?” argument.

  106. Yuuki T says:

    No, I don’t.
    Obviously, suicide can be considered a selfish action – the try at death may physically hurt others, stop traffic, pull public resources, basically inconvenience people in a very literal, tangible sense. And that’s not even counting the emotional scars that may be left.

    Nonetheless, though, I actually think it’s more selfish to deny someone the right to exit.
    Nobody signs up for this life of their own volition, and there is only so much someone can do to change the circumstances of the world around them. The systems are set, the ships out of harbor, and trying to rock the boat usually just throws you overboard. Everyone I know lives with nervous laughter and downward cast eyes: they’re poor, their dreams, goals, and ambitions will never come to fruition, they have no sway in the world, except over the children we all know they can’t really provide for. They work unfulfilling, dead-end jobs, working paycheck to paycheck, smothered by bills and rent, never having anything for themselves that doesn’t come from charity or that didn’t fall off the back of a truck.

    None of them want to kill themselves, at least none have expressed it, but if they did I wouldn’t dare stop them.
    Life really isn’t glamorous, not for most of us, and too often do people toil for no benefit of their own. If they decide that they’re sick of all this, that’s okay.

  107. mike says:

    With regard to “Do Not Give Up!” and “Do Not Give In”….

    I think the response to such statements is at the heart of a number of comments here – if it’s so important to not give up on life, then the person making such a claim should “provide the energy” and effort to the person who should not give up (i.e., the person considering suicide). I think many people who are on the brink of such a decision are out of the energy required to put forth the effort to “save themselves”. That’s the point! They are looking for help. And help is NOT telling them to somehow, in some manner, try to help themselves by doing something.

    When I’ve approached counselors in the past, I’ve approached them from the point of view of seeking help. If a counselor merely tells me what I need to do to, in effect, “pull myself up by my bootstraps” or to “snap out of it”, I get turned off and more depressed right away. Even IF depression and suicide ideation MIGHT be considered, to some extent, in the same category as addiction (I personally think there ARE overlaps between them) and that, as with addicts, the depressed or suicidal person must initiate help by taking the first step toward recovery (most counselors agree that an addict can’t really be helped in the long term until they admit to themselves they are addicted), I think initiating contact and discussing feelings with a counselor IS THE FIRST STEP. They have taken it. There, done!! So, to demand that the depressed person take even MORE steps by themselves (“Okay, you’ve got to do this and this and this to start feeling better”) isn’t helpful at all! It’s likely that the person dealing with these feelings and issues was barely able to bring themselves to a counselor and ask for help. So help them! And NOT by immediately telling them how they can or need to help themselves. They can’t! That’s why they’re seeking help from a counselor, get it??

    What we probably need is for someone to not only suggest solutions, but to basically enact the solutions, WITH the consent of the person seeking help, of course. Yes, to do the work for them (at least, initially)!! This is NOT out of laziness or from someone trying to take advantage of the system. This is from the point of view of someone doing the best they can, and that all of their energy went into asking for help! Yes, this is more expensive than someone doing something on their own, both in money and emotional effort. Yes, this is more individualized than a “one size fits all” solution of “go read this book, go research these topics, go take these special organic vitamins and chart your own progress toward a solution”. Tough!! If counselors don’t want to be seen as hypocrites in their actions, this is what they, and society in general, need to do.

  108. Anonymous says:

    I am that person

  109. Lee says:

    I think people who have had life long mental health issues should be able to choose to die. It is truly a life of suffering and is not fair to that person to suffer. Yes, they may have good days but the bad days outweigh those good days after 40 yrs of suffering. It is like being on a seesaw. Belgium is very forward thinking on this topic. There is no cure for depression and until there is,which is highly unlikely as pharmaceutical companies make billions on depression, anxiety drugs and other drugs, people should be able to choose the right to die with dignity.

  110. Anon says:

    I have been down the road of suicidal thoughts. I have severe anxiety, and panic attacks. I also do not handle stress very well. I had a very rough go at life starting from 12 years old, up until now. My teenage years were the worst of it, and i ended up dropping out of school. I have been with my wife for 8 years. She knows i have issues, and sometimes does not understand at all. I have told her about my prior suicidal thoughts, and she gets angry. She does not get how i could want to die. We have a 3 year old now. I try to maintain a positive way to think Because of my toddler. I love my daughter more than life itself, and it keeps me wanting to fight, and live. Some days are better than others. All i can do is keep on trying and fighting every day. I also have my mother and sister to keep me positive. I think that if you have that close circle of people in your life, it makes each day a little easier to get through. I wake up every day, and just try…. Thats all i can do for myself.. Just try…if i feel bad, and have those feelings, i just think about my child, and the woman who has stuck around 8 wonderful years.. I hope life can get better for others, and hope it continues to get better for me.

  111. Brent F. says:

    “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem”. Nothing could be more the opposite. Suicide is a temporary solution to a permanent problem. The problem being that of unlimited conciousness. I already tried to kill myself and succeeded and ended up in an identical life with a more damaged body. From a thermodynamic scientific standpoint there are multiple universes, each with an identical copy of you and identical environments. When you die by any means, even in the absence of suicide, you end up continuing to live in a universe that supports a survival scenario. So you decide to hang yourself with a rope. Then the rope breaks…or your parents walk in and get you help…that’s what *you* experience. Little did you know there is that original universe with a set of your parents mourning your death and planning for a funeral. So you’ve accomplished *nothing*, your neck aches and you still have 13 billion years or more of life to get through. Suicide only was the temporary solution. From the viewpoint of the self (schroedinger’s cat) the effect isn’t permanent and you still have to serve your sentence. You cannot fool thermodynamics/god/mother nature (depending on what you believe in). The enemy knows the system.

    Bottom line is, don’t waste time trying to discover the first digit of pi. It’s the number three any way you slice it. Suicide is a waste of time because it has no lasting effects. Just stay alive. Yes, you can put 1+1 into a calculator then clear it over and over but the answer is always 2.

    You will always be alive for ever and ever, no technology, person, weapon, ritual,or event can take that away from you.

  112. J W says:

    I believe in bodily autonomy. My life is mine, and mine alone. There are countless people out there — myself included — that have spent DECADES trying to recover, and things have actually gotten worse as time goes on. Much worse. I’ve tried everything under the sun. Yoga, fitness, meditation, self-care, spirituality, talk therapy, CBT, DBT, EMDR, Chinese medicine/acupuncture, supplements, body work, 8 different antidepressant medications (all of which made me PROFOUNDLY worse), diet/lifestyle modifications, self-help books, ketamine infusions, psychics (hey, we get desperate), bioidentical hormonal therapy, weekly IV nutrient infusions, ayahusaca ceremonies in Peru, THE LIST GOES ON AND ON. I’ve even participated in clinical research. About the only thing I haven’t tried is ECT and I refused it because for those with atypical depression like me, the efficacy is greatly reduced – the risk of further cognitive impairment and even lower functioning was not worth it to me for such low probability of it helping. TMS isn’t covered by insurance so that’s not an option. To say that most people get better is to completely ignore the people out there who have treatment-resistant depression. I personally know 6 other people with TRS – coincidentally, they’re all in my family. It’s worth noting that I never believed my depression to be treatment resistant until the last couple of years when reality finally set in.

    When it comes to suicide, I’ve been thinking of that since I was a child. I’m 40 now. I’ll admit – my suicidal ideation in prior years was irrational. Now, it’s absurdly rational. No one has the right to determine on my behalf that I should suffer interminably for no good reason unless they are prepared to offer a treatment THAT WORKS. Oh, and it should also cure my chronic and degenerative pain and fatigue as well, because those are becoming unbearable.

    If I lived in Belgium, the Netherlands, or Switzerland, I’d qualify for voluntary euthanasia (all three countries offer it for cases of severely mentally ill people who have a lengthy medical dossier to prove they’ve exhausted all of their options). It’s comforting to know that there ARE societies out there with compassion and mercy, not to mention a level of emotional intelligence to understand that suicide isn’t going to go away just because we don’t like it. Society will have to keep cleaning up broken bodies and guts from sidewalks, they’ll have to keep fishing bloated bodies out of rivers, they’ll have to keep cleaning up brains and skull fragments from walls until they realize that this is an issue that requires a different way of thinking besides “it gets better!”, and one which doesn’t involve forcing someone to suffer simply to appease deeply imbedded fears about death and reinforce trite sentimentalities about life. The decision to self-euthanize CAN be born in a rational mind. That’s not to say that all suicides are rational and that prevention should be non-existent, but it’s atrocious that people with lifelong illnesses, both physical and mental, don’t have autonomy over their own lives and are forced to make such a big decision alone in the dark about when they’ve had enough, which only causes unnecessary suffering for their families if and when it happens.

    It’s worth noting that in those three countries that offer voluntary euthanasia, many people that receive the green light actually decide not to go through with it, and report that knowing they have the option to end their suffering peacefully and reliably brought them comfort.

  113. Rolly says:

    I hurt so bad. The darkness and evil is always looming. I have burdened my wife with my psychological disorders for nearly 25 years only to now burden my 12 year old daughter as well. My meds failed me last weekend and I exploded into rage. I’m hurting the one’s I love so dearly. I’d rather be dead than locked up again. I’m loosing a battle with my faith as a devout Catholic. I don’t believe God has time for me anymore or if He ever did for that matter. I want it to end! If it weren’t for my daughter it would be easy. I just can’t break her heart by ending my life. As for my wife, I trust without me she could and should remarry and hopefully have a happier life. A monster has controlled me for my entire life and I can’t take much more. There’s only one way to quiet the monster, rage, and anger.

    • pAT says:

      I can’t say i know your pain but i’m struggling with heroin addiction and its brought me to my breaking point and I still see no way out, the anger is the worst part, angry for being alive, upset at yourself because how society has structured you to live, I’m not sure if there are any answers to such a problem but there’s a beauty in self awareness, and its incredible how life can take you to the highest point and bring you back down to the depths of existence in no time at all…

    • Joseph says:

      I totally feel that way as well… I feel like I want to be the great good man people always try to represent. But the feelings my brain produce aren’t in my control. I look around and see people so happy and smiling and I utterly wish I could have that in my brain. I wish I was wired that way. I wish I could enjoy small things in life and get surrounded by the positive noise to the extent I forget I’m alive and just start living. But I realize I’m alive and suffering everyday. My fiancé wants to help but it makes her sad to see me this way. It makes it so much worse that the people I love are being affected by the way I am even with my constantly not wanting to be this way. I wish there was a pill we could take that would solve everything or maybe a solace or god that actually affected me without me having to essentially dig in for the positivity myself.

    • Pin Ann Coe says:

      If you feel you are inflicting so much difficulty on your family, then move to a small apartment nearby and make sure they know it is out of love you are doing it. Maybe it will take off some of the emotional pressure from you. Do everything else in any case, before making suicide appear to be an option to your daughter. She will face seemingly insurmountable challenges in this increasingly hostile world and I can tell you are a loving parent. Don’t let her think that suicide will ever be an option for her in those rough times. This alone is why you must endure. Find another way.

    • Amy LifeStar says:

      DO NOT GIVE UP and DO NOT GIVE IN!

      “Perseverance is the KEY;” and being “Creative and Innovative” to Approach the Nature of the CORE ISSUES you are and have been undergoing!

      Also, Medications per se: and in general have Too Many Unhealthy and Unwanted Side effects or Harmful effects! So, perhaps, right now, it might be good and wise to use a MUCH MORE “NATURAL and Authentic Health and Healing Approaches” for whatever and however you have been Tormented by!

      It is Worth to consider and Explore NEW and Uplifting Approaches and Reality and a New Horizon!

  114. m.m.mokhtar says:

    i think you are too young to get bored , you still have too much time , try life again

  115. Peter says:

    I disagree. I think it an individual choice. It is also highly subjective. I have diabetes and hypertension and my life expectancy is likely to be less than 15 years. A crippling stroke is likely. Much better in my opinion to end my life now especially as I derive no pleasure from it whatsoever.

  116. Anon says:

    I have a chronic disease. It doesn’t kill me, it doesn’t totally disable me.

    But the confrontations and the disapproval by society is killing me slowly by embracing me with huge amount of concerns, anxiety and depression.

    I cannot see myself happy anytime in this life, I pretend to be happy sometimes and I never expressed my desire to die.

    I can’t fall asleep not playing with my fantasy killing myself. My desire to die has lasted long and are carefully thought thru.

    Probably I’d swallow my pain to ease life of happy ignorant people who loves the society that killed my soul.

    The only cowards are the ones who cannot accept the choices other makes to kill themselves.

  117. Jacob says:

    If you want to die, you are mentally ill. Humane nature does not dictate wanting to die. However, human nature changes based on the environment you are placed in. So, if the environment you are placed in makes you want to die, then that environment has warped your view of society and has tarnished your hopes. Suppose you were placed into that environment from the very start of your life. How would you differentiate from good and bad? You would have no way of knowing what a “normal” life should be like. You would only know the “bad.” Perhaps you experienced someone else’s “happy” life, and you knew right then and there just how awful you had it. Would you have only known that your life was bad once you had something to compare it to, or would you have been content with your life? Let’s examine the life of any insect, they have instinct. They make their decisions based on surviving. They don’t care about the quality of their life, and their only meaning is to make babies, eat food, and die. Let’s go back to humans now, no one should want to kill themselves. No one should want to end their lives because we are here merely to populate the earth. Unfortunately we are not insects, and we have many more emotions than being horny. Still, you should not find yourself wanting to die. I’ll admit, I do not find life worth living. I think, “What’s the point of going on if I’m going to die one day anyways.” There are a couple of other problems, but for the sake of the comment, I’ll focus on this one. I feel all the hopes that I have will never actually happen. I’m losing hope. If you feel you have no hope, but you find yourself in counseling by your own regard, doesn’t that mean you have some ounce of hope in you? If you make the trek to go to the counselors office every week/day/month doesn’t that mean some part of you wants to live? I find myself, more often than not, only wishing that I would die. Killing myself seems strange, but I most definitely wish a truck would plow through my window and leave my entrails strewn along the walls. So far that hasn’t exactly panned out for me. I know that I have a problem. However I don’t find myself wishing to do anything about it. Is suicide bad? If someone is “keeping” you alive or “forcing” you to stay alive, and you do it, are you really being oppressed by someone, or are you making the conscious decision to not end your life any chance you get? I don’t think anyone truly wants to kill themselves. (There may be someone out there) I haven’t heard of anyone who is having such a hard time killing themselves that they feel they are being kept alive by someone against their will. If you wake up in the morning and aren’t instantly trying to hang yourself, then you aren’t truly suicidal. You still have hope, a very small amount of hope, but hope nonetheless. Is keeping someone alive a crime? No because somewhere deep deep deep down they don’t want to die either. The instinctual part of their brain is screaming at them to stay alive as long as possible to make a new human. If you truly aren’t dissatisfied with your life, and are actually content, and you still find yourself wanting to die, then sure, kill yourself. However, if you are depressed in any way and you find yourself wanting to die, then yes, you are mentally unstable. You have unclear judgement, and someone should help you.

    • Aiah Z says:

      Jacob, you’ve presented here a running catalog of your opinions. Others can feel radically differently, just as they can about many other aspects of life. You aren’t the judge of “mentally unstable” for anyone other than yourself. Be satisfied deciding on whether you yourself feel justified in concluding you want to live or not. Telling someone else she’s unstable and cannot make decisions for herself isn’t going to convince anyone else to live her life the way you believe she should.

  118. m.m.mokhtar says:

    solid and true statement

  119. m.m.mokhtar says:

    and in addition why do others want you to live in torture and no dignity life ? either they help you or leave you alone

  120. m.m.mokhtar says:

    the very interesting point you said death is pain , how did you find that ? and what kind of pain is it? thanks

  121. Kimberly says:

    The right to die is personal and should be respected.

  122. Jason says:

    Four years ,five suicide attempts ,two counselors and im still not better im 13 now

    • Tara Brannelly, MD says:

      I’m assuming you have chronic depression. You feel that the precipitants to your state are non-existent or inadequate, and you might be right. You need to see a competent, compassionate psychoanalytically oriented psychiatrist who hopefully will have enough skill and experience to help you. He or she needs to be well trained in “biological” treatments for depression as well as psychological ones. Undoubtedly, you have been on anti-depressants. If you have tried four with no effect, it’s time to move on to TMS (trans magnetic stimulation) which has a good track record. The other option is ECT (electroconvulsive therapy)-which is by far the most effective treatment for depression. It has been around since 1930, and in the old days, treatment was barbaric. It has been re-worked over the last 15 years such that memory loss and other complications are minimal.

      Ketamine infusions are currently somewhat popular, but I don’t think they work so well for major depression. They may work better for bi-polar depression.

      Good luck and take care.

      BTW: what was done to the patient in, “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” was NOT ECT. It was a procedure used in the 1930’s and 40’s to remove sections of the patient’s frontal lobes. It was usually done on schizophrenics, but. It always Ieft the patient largely unresponsive and dull. It is illegal now and has been for some decades.

      President Kennedy’s elder sister Rose received the treatment because she was considered to be “rambunctious.” It is not clear what illness, if any, she had.

  123. Rethink says:

    Stacy, I just stumbled upon this again, while contemplating this possibility more and more, and I couldn’t disagree more with the “evidence” supporting this article.
    Perhaps the most valid point here would be a statistic which states that 90% of people who attempt suicide don’t die that way….. I went and clicked on the link at it gives an error. Presupposing this to be correct, is it fair to deny even that 1 out of 10? Also, is it not possible that if some other health condition didn’t come up first, they wouldn’t eventually choose this method of death?
    Second, the circular logic that supports the argument that 90% of people who commit suicide have some sort of mental health issue just seems ridiculously based upon self-serving assumptions, and highly questionable. Can you deny that there IS A SELFISH BENEFIT to the mental health industry to keep someone alive that might not want to be? It could even be argued that this is a form of torture, and there are very well written articles that make this case! I clicked on the link to find NO OBJECTIVE evidence of this!!!! I actually have a degree in Mathematics, and I have seen how easy it is to skew numbers and only include evidence that supports finding in research.
    Is it really beyond the realms of possibility that the psychiatric/psychological industry is perpetuating a myth that many in the population would love to support in order to make money at the expense of someone else’s suffering?
    There are so many ways to ask questions and to create bias in these “studies” that you have to question at least some of the objectivity of them.
    I recently read a list of fallacies, and one I thought was quite revealing was the Psycologist’s Fallacy seen here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychologist%27s_fallacy
    You can also look up regression fallacy, or even a little bit of Retrospective Determinism. Have these studies ever been cross-examined, and challenged? I clicked on that second link and they have a convenient disclaimer that this research is a “work in progress” which begs how seriously you can take them. Can you legitimately counter the argument that retrospective determinism is a fallacy that is just widely embraced in this research that states so many that commit suicide are “mentally ill”? If mentally ill means imperfect, then everyone in the world is mentally ill, so how many other rights/freedoms are we going to take away?
    I just cannot understand what gives some “expert” the right to impose their beliefs on someone when the basis is so questionable, self-serving (you can’t deny that psychologists make money off of people they call “mentally unstable”), and yet so weak in pure measurement objectivity. I hear this self-sustaining faulty logic all the time, and am baffled at how few actually question it! “If you are considering ending your life, then you are mentally unstable. If you are mentally unstable, then any perspective of yours has to be questioned.” Yet WHO, and by WHAT MEASURE are they deemed “mentally unstable”? By some norm in society’s perspective is in disagreement? As you mention, life is in constant flux, and so are the perspectives of this society! Hence I really think it is a slippery slope calling someone mentally unstable.
    There are times when someone has truly evaluated the pros and cons of living vs dying, and if one has no dependents, should have EVERY RIGHT to terminate this existence. We weren’t asked if we wanted to be here. Sometimes there are financial pressures that weigh on people’s decisions, and they logically don’t want to be a burden on others. There can be LOGIC to this decision, and in my experience, I have seen more logic on the side of those contemplating this gruesome scenario than many in the psychological community that constantly produce self-serving, weakly supported “research”, yet agree in masses because IT BENEFITS THEIR PROFESSION with the research.
    Please, at least acknowledge the potential for bias in this. If there really is measurable evidence that only 10% continue to commit suicide, well, that might be a somewhat valid indicator, but there are even flaws with that. I wish all psychologists and psychiatrists had to have all their work cross-checked with the list of common fallacies, because I think this profession would be MUCH IMPROVED.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Rethink,

      Thank you for your thoughtful comments. I’m learning, perhaps belatedly, that my participating in this debate does little good, so I will observe the process with curiosity and receptiveness. In the meantime, I want to share with you a couple things. One, this article will probably interest you: Mental Disorder and Suicide: A Faulty Connection, by Saxby Pridmore (2015). I’m linking to a PDF version through ResearchGate; be warned that those articles can disappear at any moment.

      I also want to thank you for letting me know of the faulty link, which I have replaced with the current URL. I alone run this website while working full time as a professor and psychotherapist, so I regrettably don’t have the time to check all the links. I appreciate when people let me know that one is out of date.

      Thanks, and I look forward to reading your further contributions to this debate.

    • Alexander says:

      Rethink —

      A few more thoughts.

      The 1990s and 2000s were glorious decades to be a psychiatrist. It seemed as though each year several new, potentially life-changing medications were brought to market. Options became available to tackle long-standing, treatment-resistant disorders. It did not hurt that big pharma had deep pockets to promote the new offerings. Stigmas were falling, more people were seeking help than ever before, and just about any psychiatrist could brag about patients who, with the right medication and a little time, returned looking more confident and reporting fewer symptoms.

      Today the shine has DIMMED…. The mental health of the nation may have even declined in the past 20 years. This trend is what Thomas Insel, former director of the National Institute of Mental Health, calls one of the “inconvenient truths” of mental illness. Suicide rates per 100,000 people have increased to a 30-year high. Substance abuse, particularly of opiates, has become epidemic. Disability awards for mental disorders have dramatically increased since 1980, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is struggling to keep up with the surge in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

      The most discouraging assessment came in 2013 from an in-depth analysis by the U.S. Burden of Disease Collaborators. Hundreds of investigators gathered data on 291 diseases and injuries between 1990 and 2010. Combining premature death and disability to calculate the burden of each disease, they found that the toll of mental disorders had grown in the past two decades, even as other serious conditions became more manageable.

    • Peter says:

      I think people classed as having a mental illness are likened to the psychology theory of people having a functional role/being able to function in society. This is a core objective of psychiatrists and specialist counsellors and the thought of not being functional is both abhorrent and considered by them a failure.

      This being the case, similar to other fields where someone has a vested interest in their career or “selling” something (be it a message or item) you do have to take what a qualified professional says with a grain of salt. They wouldn’t have a job if it was as simple as just letting people who want to loll themselves go. It would do them out of a job!

      A lot of people classified as wanting to die because they have a mental illness is more palatable than accepting the reality – and that is that some people SHOULD be allowed to go. If that’s their choice.

      Sorry Stacy mate – what you are selling I am simply not buying.

  124. Abby says:

    I think suicide is okay. No one cares how you “live” your life until the moment you decide you don’t want to live it anymore. Say someone wants to die because life is strenuous and laborious. Constantly empty and doesn’t care to “better themselves”. Then let them leave. Clearly they don’t think being alive is worth anything so why keep them here to suffer? Fuck life in my opinion.

  125. Mike says:

    I don’t believe all suicides can be or should be prevented. Can a person learn to cope with mental pain or stress? Yes. Is that always a positive thing? Consider someone with chronic physical pain. Can they learn to cope? Probably, especially if they have external help such as pain killers. Is that a positive outcome, merely coping with the.pain? Most other people would not object to the person in pain saying “no”.

  126. Anonymous says:

    Just as there is the right to live, so there ought to be the right to die. If someone is unhappy with their life and that over the years there was no improvement, then why should one prolong their torment?

  127. Matt Crawley says:

    Death is pain… I’d like to avoid that as long as possible…

  128. Anonymous says:

    No, not always. Sometimes there is no one to prevent it, and that itself is reason enough to have no reason to live.

  129. Anonymous says:

    No…if someone wants to die let them. It’s a free country and no one has the right to tell them they can’t die!

  130. Brek says:

    I’ve been feeling like I’ve wanted to die for a very long time now. I try to distract myself from it but the notion is always present in the back of my head. Friends, family, hobbies and doctors don’t help me at all. I’ve tried pretty much everything I could that’s supposedly anti suicide but it never really made me think any differently. Even when I go to sleep I’m plagued by dreams that don’t really bring any relief. It’s like constantly I find myself being told to kill myself by my conscious over and over again. I’m surprised I’m still alive to write this now. Before I was mentally depressed I weighed 180 pounds 5 weeks after that I dropped to 110 pounds reason being I was pretty much starving myself eating as little as a piece of toast every three days. I still weigh the same weight today even though my appetite is better then it used to be. People who see me me call me crack head/bulimic because I’m pretty much bone. Which is extremely hurtful to me, I never took part in either of those practices. The only drug I’ve used in my entire was marijuana. One of my family members have passed away and left me $8000 dollars im almost certain that I’m going to use that money for airline fare to the Netherlands and seek out euthanasia. What’s the point in living if it hurts to be alive? No one on my side could ever give me a answer.

    • Anonymous says:

      You may not be bulimic but anorexia yes have you been treated with meds yet

    • Joe says:

      It’s tough for a foreigner to be allowed euthanasia in another country, especially if it’s just for depression. You’d need to have a terminal illness. I recommend using the 8000 bucks you have to go travelling around the world you may just find inner peace and harmony, or someone who loves you, or whatever it is that makes you feel warm inside.

  131. Carla says:

    Recently, the moral status of suicide has been scrutinized by the poet and philosopher Jennifer Michael Hecht, in a book titled, Stay: A History of Suicide and the Philosophies Against It. Hecht wrote the book in the aftermath of two suicides—both victims were close friends and fellow poets. In essence, Hecht argues that suicide cannot be evaluated solely in terms of “personal autonomy,” as some modern ethicists might claim; rather, we must hold suicide up to the clarifying light of communal values. In an audiotape accompanying her book, Hecht argues that “When a person kills himself, he does wrenching damage to the community.” And this, surely, must be counted among the “moral harms” of deliberate self-destruction.

    I agree with Jennifer Hecht.

    The bottom line for me is that all of us, as part of a human community, must face and consider the enormous emotional toll suicide takes on those LOVED ONES who survive. We can empathize with, and respect, the tremendous pain that may drive some to suicide, and refrain from passing any harsh moral judgment on them… But we can also strongly encourage anyone who is suicidal to take some time to consider other options; to discuss his/her feelings with an empathic counselor or mental health professional; to avoid making an impulsive decision; to seek treatment for potentially reversible psychiatric problems; and–within the patient’s own system of values**–to discuss the effects suicide would likely have on friends, family, and loved ones!

    • Rethink says:

      I am sorry, but I don’t see how you can “empathize with, and respect the tremendous pain” that someone contemplating such possibilities might be going through if all that is thought of is “Loved ones”. How do you know that people considering suicide haven’t tried the things you propose, and those very people haven’t failed miserably? Don’t you think in many cases the person considering suicide hasn’t mentioned this to loved ones and those very people have selfishly ignored opportunities they had to help with a situation?
      The only exception in which I do believe one has a responsibility to continue on, is when that person has dependents. You brought someone into this world, and you do have an obligation to them. How can you expect someone to suffer on and on and on, just so someone else doesn’t have to go to a funeral? Isn’t that inflicting pain on the person suffering? I am just having a hard time seeing the genuine empathy, and respect for someone’s situation who may legitimately just be better off at peace. Keep in mind, that many times those who are contemplating, or carrying out the suicide have been ROUTINELY let down by that “community” Hecht seems to describe. Has she ever been to a state of desperation that those considering suicide are at, or is she just philosophizing? Sure, there are effects, but to make others in the community such victims all the time seems very short-sighted, and isn’t a perspective that really should be given much weight without further inspection. Often those in the community have made many many contributions to such a decision, and DO hold SOME (not all) responsibility. They aren’t always victims, and if they truly care about the person, should consider the pain that is being lifted off of the shoulders of the deceased.

    • Amelia says:

      Hecht was interviewed by Krista Tippett on her radio show/podcast, On Being. If interested, see link below:

      https://onbeing.org/programs/jennifer-michael-hecht-suicide-and-hope-for-our-future-selves

  132. Someone Somewhere says:

    Leave them alone, let them die with some dignity (which is why I support euthanasia and assisted suicide of course) for goodness sake since they apparently couldn’t find any dignity being amongst the living. At least bother LISTENING to what they have to say (as opposed to simply hearing their words) instead of throwing tired cliches at them in which many make absolutely no sense on any level of basic logic, but it’s extremely rare to find anybody that actually does. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I think it’s extremely sad when minors (since they didn’t really give life a chance) or parents (because they abandoned their children) commit suicide but I mean if you spend every decade, year, week, day, hour in misery and/or incurable sickness, nothing makes up for it, you cannot afford to live or if you can it’s all moot because all your time and energy is gone once you DO earn it and there’s nothing going for you nobody should make you feel bad about cashing out early.

    I think the anti-suicide and pro-self esteem movement irritates me a lot because of the simple fact that they’re empty, hollow and not based on ANYTHING. Essentially nobody is allowed to face their own flaws and shortcomings; we have to wait for others to. People (especially children) are lied to from birth, told that they can “do anything they set their mind to so long as they work hard and never give up” and for some people this is true… but for those like me who are borderline-retarded and simply can’t and work hard only to end up exhausted for a whole lot of nothing, we’ve had the rug pulled from underneath. I angrily grit my teeth whenever someone calls someone else “lazy” or tells them “if I can do ____ you can too!” We all have different abilities and different levels of said abilities, and in this overpopulated sphere of god-crap floating in space, sometimes “our best” just isn’t enough. At least societies like feudal Japan had the guts to tell people they need to commit ritual suicide if they weren’t “good enough” and were “dishonorable” and actually mean it instead of this soft, fake smarmy crap they have today telling people they’re “perfect just the way they are” and everyone getting a “participation trophy” only to have that all slap them back in the face twice as hard once they face the real world. They want people to live on not because they actually CARE about anyone that’s suicidal but people always need SOME sort of scapegoat right? It’s just like how the bully doesn’t actually want the receiver of their harassment to die… if so, who would be their mark right? Society says don’t kill yourself and you can be as miserable as you feel, just don’t disturb the rest of the workers on the sweatshop floor with your crying and angst.

    I apologize for anything stupid I’ve said as this all is hard for me to articulate and I am far from an intelligent being… this is just my 2 cents.

    • Anonymous says:

      Try being the loved one of someone who committed suicide…your tirade is so naive. The majority of the time suicide is due to an untreated mental disorder. Those left behind suffer every single day. They suffer because we don’t acknowledge mental illness and stigmatize it as a society. You are the problem. I would never wish this kind of pain on anyone. I lost my life, my love due to this…and you are still alive and get to feel self righteous…

    • Someone Somewhere says:

      you are wrong anonymous. I HAVE lost people who are very near and dear to me to suicide. At least two of them were some of my best friends and though every day it does pain me on a personal level that they’re gone and I wish I could’ve helped them in any way even if it meant I wouldn’t sleep for over 24 hours, the fact remains that they are dead and at least they aren’t suffering anymore (I don’t buy “hell” of any sort either; just another thing to scare people away from thinking for themselves.) In fact, a few years ago I learned one of my uncles would frequently attempt suicide and because my family keeps me in the dark about EVERYTHING it’s possible he may have killed himself. Not knowing if he did or not torments me all the time too.

      I’m very sorry you’ve lost a loved one to suicide but my point is, from personal experience, it’s usually best not to assume things about others.

    • J W says:

      You actually come across as highly intelligent and articulate, and I enjoyed reading what you have to say. I agree with it all.

  133. AC says:

    I think we should be allowed to die if we choose. The mental health system sucks and you can’t even have honest conversation with your doctors about suicide without being doped up or locked away. You can’t talk to friends or family without them being afraid. Perhaps this is because people always assume living is best. If we can’t truthfully communicate our experience, because of the cultural discomfort of others, we are then further disconnected and isolated. The world is crooked and phony. I want nothing more from it.

  134. Chron says:

    I’m not sure I want to kill myself even though I tell everyone that I do. I think I’m just chronically unhappy and ungrateful. I think I’m a grown-up child who doesn’t really know how to correctly cope with my shitty life. I attempted suicide once before. I cut my wrist and wound up in a mental institution, but the therapy doesn’t really help that much. This may sound shallow, but I don’t think I would have this problem if I were very wealthy. I think if I had enough money I could at least distract myself from myself for at least long enough to die of old age.

    • Paul says:

      Keep in mind that you are correct, also death as you put it would not even be on your mind if you were wealthy. As a society (this society, not tribal) the way we kill and harm others in a socially acceptable manner is to make them poor, the less money that they have is the way that people are harmed in this society, and when the harm goes far enough they die.

  135. Paul says:

    You are wrong about people not able to understand that the world is mostly lies. Most people that understand how society functions in whole know this is simply a fact of life. Problem is that most people are unable to handle the fact that they are living a lie. Life did not start off this way, but has progressed this way as society has declined over many many years. There are times when society is improving and there is no need for lies to get people to contribute. One thing to keep in mind is that what we are going through now is nothing new, just new to us in this society and country. Rome, China, Greece and many other countries have gone through what we are now. However it hurts and we are not willing to admit life is getting harder for most people while a small minority are doing better than in the past. This is our standard of living. It is not your imagination, and to live in the moment you have to be aware of it. Don’t let the God will fix it crowd get to you, as they are part of the problem. If people do not work to solve problems, the problems do not go away but get worse till it all falls apart, then it will get fixed.

  136. Larry says:

    It’s no longer emotional for me. I’ve been on my own for 7 years of my life. George Carlin talks a lot about luck, about how people are born with it. There are some people who have lots of luck, and others…

    I haven’t had any luck. I made a career for myself, moved away, started something with promise. All of it is meaningless, it’s all status, everything I own is just something to distract me from my real feelings.

    I’ve felt this way my whole life. I’ve put up a front ever since I moved away, because I didn’t and still don’t want anyone to know how I truly feel. People judge you a lot for saying you want to die, with good understanding.

    You know that feeling, when you’re loved by someone, and love yourself. I haven’t had that. I’ve had girlfriends, been “in love” before, but never, truly loved someone. It’s really depressing. Incredibly so.

    I don’t feel pity for myself, I don’t feel like I want to die because it’s the easy way out, I feel this way because I’ve tried so hard to succeed emotionally, physically, mentally. I’ve tried my whole life. I’m tired of trying. I’m tired of being tired.

    There’s going to be a point where I am no longer going to vent about this and take actions into hand. The only thing stopping me? My parents and siblings. I know it would irreversibly kill them to know I feel this way, and that I did what I did because I wanted to die.

    Please tell me there are people who feel the same. I can’t be alone…

    • Paul says:

      The only person you and others really only need to love and be loved by firstly is yourself. We all need to love ourselves more than anyone else to get enjoyment out of life.

      I hope that this makes sense to you, as we are not able to be really loved by others if we do not love ourselves first.

    • LarryCan you see me says:

      I want to understand you Larry. I just made this fake account to respond to you. I don’t want to be a cliche and say I get what you’re feeling/ going through, but. I feel a need to be around you or interact with you.
      I’m sorry.
      – English is not my native language. I wish i could see you.

    • chancerylane says:

      You are not alone. I feel the same.

      I have tried, tried, tried. In the end I got what I wanted, only to be struck down by a chronic illness, which is not serious enough for any organisation to have mercy on me.

      So my only option is to exist. The thing is; I don’t want to exist, I want to live, but I cannot.

      I had my fair share of happy, wonderful memories, and I am ready to go, but I don’t know how. All of the readily available options seem messy and prone to failure.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are not alone.

    • lila says:

      I feel that way every single day

  137. Rian T says:

    Yes i feel similar to other comments, “suicides feeling are fluid” shows a blissful unawareness of the magnitude of the problem, and why so many people (the third biggest killer of men under 50) for example, chose to kill themselves. It is not done lightheartedly, as if there is another choice. Many i suspect are middle aged at least and have suffered for 30 or so years looking for an answer from their mental torture.The only reason people don’t do it or regret their decision after trying, is because they still have an element of hope there. This does not mean that their hope is logical. After 30 or 40 years of depression for example, i suspect that after that period of time, that the hope is misplaced, and if they have not found a cure after all that time at trying, that the hope is false, Of course no one wants to die, they would prefer their mental anguish to end, and the hope keeps them going. Just because people have survived suicide attempts, it does not mean they are happy or would not prefer to have died if this is how it remains for them. Hope keeps them going. In most cases regretfully, mental illness will not be cured if they have suffered for so many years, they will keep going and find ways to cope, often because of family/children they have. This is far different to being content or happy after suicide attempts.

  138. I really think you underestimate people. If a person wants to end it, they’re going to. No justification is going to help them – in fact, it may push them even further.

    • Jessica says:

      I absolutely agree with you as a lot of it describes me to a tee. I live for my children and my husband not for myself. If it weren’t for them I guarantee I wound not be here.

  139. Sofia says:

    I’ve been miserable since I was 8 years old Now 40 years old I lost my beloved Son I just want to die trying to find the easy way

    • Julie says:

      The loss of a child causes pain that’s indescribable. You are not alone. Please know that I am here to talk.

    • joseph1777 says:

      I have had depression for 40 years now and it has not gotten better but more so it has become worse over the years. It makes for a very miserable life. I have asked God for healing and though I believe He hears our prayers I have not been healed for whatever reasons He has in His will. Now I just ask for Him to take me home in my sleep. I dont feel much like living but I do not believe suicide is the right thing to do as it is considered ~killing~ which is against God’s commandments. That’s why I ask Him to make the choice for me. I feel mental illness and depression is the worst feeling one can experience. It is like your shadow and follows you every moment of your day. I would do anything to be free of this terrible illness

    • joseph1777 says:

      I am sorry that you grieve so much and it is understandable after what you have been through, I have suffered as well from major depression and it is the most awful thing I can think could happen to us. I pray for God to take me home. I do not want to suffer anymore. We only have God to put our trust and hope in. Gods love be with you my friend~

  140. Tom Hal says:

    Stacey, please don’t take my comment as an attack, but after reading your recent comments (14 November…) it is clear to me that what I and others have suspected is “true” is enough so to justify our decisions not to engage the professional therapeutic community. It seems to me there are two camps present in this comment section, and this delineation is manifest just about everywhere–among lay and professionals–where right-to-die arguments pop up. On the one hand are those who are suffering–terribly and for decades–lives they just don’t want and which therapists haven’t been able to provide sufficient (if any) relief from. On the other hand are those who, for many different reasons, enjoy the luxury of deliberation–of hypothesizing and building abstract arguments and speculating. The former live-and-breathe suffering while the latter get to utter lines like, “It is one of the strange discoveries a man can make that life, however you lead it, contains moments of exhilaration; there are always comparisons which can be made with worse times: even in danger and misery the pendulum swings.”

    There can be no compromise, I think, where someone wants something for herself that is fundamentally a private and personal matter (like whom she loves or what she aspires to or when she is ready for life to end) and imperatives passed down by the state that circumscribe individual rights on how we exist (like banning affection among lesbians or preventing blacks from learning to read or forcing the suffering who wish to die to continually reevaluate the lives they don’t want and stay alive).

    And while I don’t at all mean to be cruel, the Greene quote has nothing to do with the decision to end one’s own life. That is an evaluative judgment, not a matter of empiricism. Unless cognitive neuroscience has since rigorously demonstrated a treatable global cause-effect molecular-cellular pathology uniquely responsible for suicidal ideation, at least for many of us the decision to leave life is a free response to our experiences of life, which are valid regardless others’ impressions of their own lives–and life in general.

    Nor should the possibility of abuse among some obviate the right of the rest of us to decide on our own lives, especially possibilities like the extreme circumstances you’ve outlined. Just as I have no business deciding for a woman whether she should or should not have a child, I do not see it as anyone else’s business how and when I die, so long as I am not a threat to others. Thank you for demonstrating to me just why participating in discussions like the ones in this comment section is fruitless, for me.

    I wish my country were advanced enough ethically to recognize my right to leave life in a legally and medically sound and compassionate way, but I won’t beg or argue anymore. Thankfully, I am able-bodied and can act as I see fit without seeking anyone else’s permission.

    • Bella says:

      I love you, Tom. I’m in similar shoes, but I think you SHOULD realize your potential to inspire. I feel like shit every single day, yet YOU made me feel a bit better. Thank you. You are loved.

  141. mokhtar says:

    no body will encourage you to commit sucide simply because they do not feel the way you feel even they can understand you, life is too short wait for natural death because you do not know what is waiting you on the other side it may be worse than what you are suffering right now and i hope it will not be so, from your message i understand you are very sensitive person, awesome but you actually you did not find your proper enviroment, try to change your location even temporary you will discover new life and new ideas that can make you satisfied, you are still young and who knows that chances are waiting for you, give more time before taking your decision, understand you are not alone others are suffering more than you, if you intend to terminate your life just wait because natural death can come even before your attempt

  142. James G says:

    “I can understand you ­and a lot of people (­including myself) are­ concerned about what­ those checks and bal­ances will end up bei­ng but I can’t see an­y example you’ve brou­ght up that would pas­s any criteria that w­ould be in place. Of ­course I may have mis­sed some so excuse me­ if I’m incorrect.

    It’s akin to laws put­ in place for someone­ charged with murder ­for example. For the ­most part evidence is­ required and guilt beyond reasonable doub­t is required to sent­ence someone to priso­n. ”

    Perhaps some simple guidelines. Minimum age of 30 or 35 years of age. A waiting period of 2 to 3 weeks. Time for examination of medical background by professionals to prove history of attempting to treat illness. Here is part of my story.

    A few days ago I unfriended everyone on FB. I do mean everyone. Why ? Because it is painfully clear that it is hard to be my friend. I spent endless hours on fb checking to see what everyone was doing, I badly wanted to be a part of their lives. I was living vicariously through everyone’s posts, making funny
    (stupid ) little comments. Some were received well, ok, Kerri Xxxxxx was really the only person kind to “humor” me. In hindsight I think it was one of those, awwww poor Jim things. Still, she is always sweet.

    There were others who ” liked” my comments but mostly I was ignored and rightly so. I now realize that I have done this all my life, inviting myself into other peoples conversations, activities and lives. Kinda creepy now that I see it. I kinda knew that I was trying too hard to become involved but the nagging feelings of emptiness and loneliness were running the show.

    I’ve been bothered for a long time by the realization that I’m very rarely called by anyone. Let alone invited to something. Most people didn’t want me in their lives to begin with. The rest are family and they have just seen enough. Most people will take a look at a car accident when passing by but if it’s
    bad, injuries, blood ect., we quickly turn away. It’s too hard to see. I think I’m the gory car accident. Just too hard to look at .

    I actually had a couple people honest enough to tell me “dude it isn’t easy to be your friend.” Hell, 20 yrs. ago a friend told me that I had an abrasive personality. Took me this long to really get it. Also, it’s finally sinking in that I wear people out. Family, friends, coworkers, and lovers eventually start to
    distance themselves from me. In hindsight I don’t blame any of you. I’m a downer. I’m needy. I’m unpredictable. I’m a drunk and drug addict. I’m a pain in the ass.

    There has been 48 yrs of having trouble making and keeping friends. I’m 48 yrs old now. So yea, always. I used to think I was broken, that something inside me just wasn’t right. A birth defect maybe. Actually I like the sound of that. No one is ever looked down upon for having a birth defect. Then I
    could blame God, lol, if I believed in God.

    I’ve tried to change. I’ve gone to great lengths to change but here we are. It has also recently occurred to me that I have not once in my life pulled myself out of a tight spot. Whether the problem was financial , legal , drinking or drug problems, I’ve always had to lean on someone. Pathetic ,sad, disgraceful . 48 yrs old and not once picked myself up and pushed on.

    At a very young age I experienced what some might consider hell. Around 14yrs old without any specific provocation I swallowed 200 asprin. I began creating my own hell. Throwing gasoline on everything that mattered to me. My shrink and I determined that the depression started around 12yrs old. I didn’t have a clue how to fix things. Apparently I still don’t. In high-school some called me “suicide” man. Also, for as long as I can remember have often had an intense feeling that there was something wrong, something huge missing. When I say intense I mean
    the kind of thing that feels like life or death. I’ve proceeded to try to fill that with anything and everything that helps quiet the feelings. Doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad, just STOP the noise in my head.

    The noise, maybe 20% of the time, is a mild nagging set of thoughts. Constant and clear. “You SUCK!” “You’re worthless!” “ You should just kill yourself!” Yes, compared to the bad days, that is mild. The rest of the time depending on the circumstances, it becomes deafening. The stress level, the
    anxiety, has it been cloudy or sunny, these things make a huge difference. On my best day I feel tired and small. My worst? I can’t fucking describe noise in my head. At this very moment I am vacillating between thoughts of suicide and asking for help, again.

    In the last 3 years these symptoms have become much worse. I now know what Bipolar is. Driving down the road and having a good day in the morning to bawling like a fucking baby after lunch. This has become a regular thing in the past year.

    I’ve been thinking about suicide every day for the past year and a half. Six weeks ago I quit my good job of 10 years. I had a very understanding boss but I couldn’t safely operate my Semi because of the distracting noise in my head. I intend to end all of this a few days after Thanksgiving.

    There needs to be a way for a person with a proven history to safely, calmly and without disgrace to leave this all behind.

    • Anonymous says:

      I feel for you, and want to leave too. I have the same thoughts run through my head, but my condition is more of a Borderline Personality Disorder. So I have a lot of situational anxiety and depression, with bouts of rage and hopelessness.

      The only thing that brings a shred of relief is seeing my family, or escaping reality.

      The only way I’m still holding my job is that I mainly work alone, without too much supervision. When I start having to deal with additional work though, or co-workers too often…it gets bad.

      And I understand about the Facebook thing. I tried to reach out to my list of friends and family and was sorely disappointed. No one wants serious talk, just humorous and carefree. So I quit my account.

      So anyway, I get you, even if that doesn’t matter. I hope whatever you decide to do works out for you. Meaning, if you truly want to go, don’t screw it up like I did.

    • John says:

      I hope to hell you don’t kill yourself. Our stories are almost mirror images. You have a decade on me and had a good job otherwise our issues are similar. I wish I knew the answer, but I don’t. I hope you find some peace.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Thanks for sharing this. It’s very meaningful to me. Wish we could speak.

    • Anonymous says:

      James. Hoping you’re still here NOT because I want to blow sunshine up your ass, but because your post TOTALLY resonated with me. Same age (diff gender), pariah over time, hard to be friends with/close to.
      Came on this site to philosophize and try to get perspective. I have MMO but not balls. So far.

    • Amy LifeStar says:

      Dear James,

      My name is Amy LifeStar! As a starting point in the conversation in relation to what you posted; “Friends in actuality and in the 5th Dimensional World and Space are not that important or even important at all” because ultimately, you are your own best and true friend or at least try to be your own best friend at all times despite how tough the world has been—for and to—you!

      Even when a person has tons of friends, it does not mean that those so-called “friends” would hold this person’s hands and pat on his/her back when this person is falling or in deep water! This occurs because “many people are not being sincere, kind, and empathic per se; and most likely they are not even being kind, genuine, empathic, etc. to themselves let alone understanding and accepting themselves for who they are; what they are; how they became what they became; the future image/development they desired to become, and so on so forth!”

      Therefore, there is no need to “desire for insignificant and superficial friendships or relationships in our lives.” In essence and in truth, you would be the one who has and needs to face and handle whatever comes your way in a “Courageous, Appropriate, Creative, Wise, and Honorable Way!” Nevertheless, despite our best actions, intentions, and perseverance to make it work and make it beautiful for ourselves; there are and will be people in our physical surroundings (not necessarily our friends, family, or acquaintances) Standing in Our Way—to Stop Us to be in the Exact and Necessary Pathway(s) that We Needed to be in—in order to proceed or progress to the level of “Liberation of Our Wounds, Torments, Sufferings, etc.!” The truth is there are many evil, dark, and twisted beings (people) on earth and around us; and this reason explains why there are so many human beings “wanted out or wanted quit”
      from a Tormenting Life (whatever kinds of torments that Forced these human beings to desired to exit Planet Earth: ending its own sufferings and torments by not existing (commonly distorted term: suicide).

      Ultimately, “Understanding, Accepting, Acknowledging, Loving, and Honoring Oneself throughout Time and Space is extremely crucial to continue to Exist in the constant Turbulent, Unkind, Merciless, Unethical, Devious, Vicious, and Twisted Society and World—the 3rd Dimensional world!”

      —By Amy LifeStar, HD & Ethicist

      *For more insights on the subject matter, please refer to my comment on November 12, 2016. Take care, James!

  143. Alex says:

    Stacy,

    The right to die has been hotly debated for decades. In this area, as well as in the area of abortion, we observe two fallacious positions: one right-wing, religiously-motivated faction which seeks to impose life on everyone and everything, even corpses, and one slightly less right-wing, liberalism-motivated faction which proposes a “moderate” position.

    Just to be clear before I continue, by right to die I include all the ways by which one can voluntarily die: suicide, assisted suicide (where the means of death have been provided by someone else) and euthanasia (where a third party performs the act).

    First, let me reject some arguments motivated by irrational worldviews. First, the Christian belief that killing ourselves is an assault against God’s ownership of human beings, and the liberal/Libertarian belief in self-ownership as justifying bodily destruction; I have debunked both of these as they pertained to abortion, and the same reasoning applies here (self-ownership is tautological, God’s will cannot have any ethical consequences, the Bible does not consider suicide to be unethical).

    So, is there such a thing as a right to die? There is a clear conflict between those who wish to die and those who try to stop them from doing so. Following Tucker’s theorem (that the invader’s values must be subordinated to those of the invaded), our criterion to choose who is in the right is by looking at who is imposing their values on the other.

    From this point, the arguments from both sides go roughly as follows. The anti-right view would hold that the prospective suicides are interfering with their own values by desiring to extinguish them (even going so far as to call it “self-murder”), and would also argue that the suicides, if their plan succeeds, interfere with society as a whole and with God’s plans (the latter point, of course, can be dismissed). The moderate view accepts the personal and social losses as being relevant, but balances them with the expected future of the suicides, so that the freedom to die is acceptable in some circumstances as a self-determined choice, and not in others.

    I reject the utilitarian arguments on the ground that we can’t possibly make any inter-subjective comparisons. Whether the suffering that the suicides spare themselves is greater or lesser than the suffering of their loved ones is a pointless question. As for social losses, not only is it another consequentialist argument, but studies have shown that when we take into account the potential losses to society due to old age costs and psychological issues, suicide is actually economically beneficial (to the tune of around 150,000$ per person in the US), so I also reject this as a consideration.

    So, having whittled down each side, we have two simpler conflicting views. The first is that the suicides are fulfilling their values and that the suicide-stoppers are interfering with the suicides’ freedom to express their values. The second is that the suicides are interfering with other people’s values (say, the suicide’s spouse, who depends on em in order to fulfill relational values) without their consent, and that therefore stopping them is just.

    Now the answer is clear. The former narrative is the correct one, because no one has the right to demand that any specific person help them fulfill their values. Again we come back to the house on fire example: if your house is on fire, you can rightly expect the firemen to deal with the fire, but you don’t have the right to demand that any random bystander run into the house to save someone. Likewise, I have no right to expect a specific person to remain alive because I need my relationship with them (the case of a person with children is another matter, which I will take up at the end for the sake of argument flow).

    Another problem is that we cannot use emotional distress as an objective standard. While it may be true that a suicide may inflict emotional distress on those around them, this may also be true of someone who decides to remain alive and burden people around them. Should we therefore mandate suicide on that basis as well? I am open to arguments for mandating suicide, but prima facie this seems unreasonable. It seems much more likely that distress is, like all emotions, not sufficient evidence to indicate that criminal harm has been inflicted on someone.

    So I conclude that the suicide is actually in the right, and anyone who tries to stop them is in the wrong.

    Let’s look further at the issue of consent. In order to be justified, any action must necessarily involve the consent of all parties involved. The anti-right view means imposing the continuation of life on a person without their consent. This is unjustifiable and wrong. As we know life always involves an element of suffering, to force the continuation of life means to impose a certain amount of suffering on a person. If anything is wrong, this must be it.

    Note that I did not make any distinction of age or medical state here, because it is not relevant at all. Nothing in my arguments indicates that age or medical state has any relevance whatsoever. It is wrong to impose the continuation of life on a child or an adult, on a healthy person or a terminally ill person, on a person of sound mind or a person of unsound mind. Granted, whether a person of unsound mind can be said to meaningfully consent is a different matter, but as long as pre-written consent is given there shouldn’t be a problem, like how do not resuscitate orders and advance directives are not inherently problematic.

    We may evaluate that a given person’s expected future is “good enough” for them to continue living, but our own personal evaluation is not relevant to another person’s decision. We can’t meaningfully make such an evaluation as anything but a personal opinion, so it’s irrelevant to whether another person should be allowed to commit suicide or not.

    Let me make myself clear, so I am understood fully: if a person who is completely healthy and of sound mind declares the intent to die, they should be allowed to die, no questions asked. Age is not relevant, health is not relevant, expected future is not relevant, mental state is not relevant. Death should be provided to anyone who desires it.

    One may reply that, while they agree in theory with my conclusion that anyone should be free to commit suicide, my position is callous because suicide is a bad thing on the whole, and that we should be trying to dissuade people from killing themselves, not help them to kill themselves.

    But this sort of moderate position is based on an incommensurate belief in human life as a positive thing. At least the anti-right position is shameless in its authoritarianism and, while professing to be “pro-life,” clearly has no respect for life. In that respect, the moderate position doesn’t really make any sense. How is human life so great that a supposedly rational calculation proves that we should feel justified to force it on other people?

    Not only that, but many believe that human life is so valuable that forcing it on people is good for all expected futures except a future of constant, unwavering suffering. This is such an extreme position that it’s hard to believe that it’s actually the mainstream position. When we spit on people’s desperation and freedom in the name of “life,” you know that we truly are fanatics for the cult of life in this society. Like any other form of violent mindless fanaticism, it truly sickens me.

    I have already pointed out that it is impossible for any person to rationally conclude that anyone else’s suicide was a mistake. We are bombarded with propaganda trying to indoctrinate us with the opposite belief: “suicide is selfish” (as if other people have a claim to our continued existence), “suicide is the coward’s way out” (see my “losing team” point below), “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem” (not all the problems being solved are temporary), “choose life” (why?), and such pap. All of these propaganda slogans are meant to obscure the fundamental fact that suicide puts the person’s death in their own hands.

    Here is Bill Zeller’s suicide letter:

    >”People say suicide is selfish. I think it’s selfish to ask people to continue living painful and miserable lives, just so you possibly won’t feel sad for a week or two. Suicide may be a permanent solution to a temporary problem, but it’s also a permanent solution to a ~23 year-old problem that grows more intense and overwhelming every day”

    The cowardice propaganda, I think, is especially pushed. There is a strong correlation, I think, between this propaganda and the objection that antinatalism puts us on the “losing team”; again there is this belief in life as a sports game and longevity as the points, and if you kill yourself you’re running away from the field because you just can’t take the heat.

    As for “choosing life,” they don’t really want you to “choose.” An actual choice would require viable options, but to my opponents there’s only one viable option, and that’s staying alive at all costs.

    Of course there is a sense in which this discussion, like the abortion discussion, is pointless: people will do it whether it’s justified or not. But, as for abortion, suicide often requires the assistance of at least one other person. And making an act ethically unjustified or illegal does severely lower the availability of such assistance (just as the fanatical belief that abortion is unjustified severely lowers the availability of medical and pharmaceutical assistance). And that’s a real problem that causes suffering to real people. All these debates are really just rationalizations on whether we should force people to suffer or not. My answer is always gonna be “hell no.”

    I think the belief that suicide is good or bad will depend on one’s worldview. Liberalism cannot admit of the righteousness of suicide because it is predicated on unerring optimism about human abilities and the belief in constant progress. There is definitely a tension there between the belief in “self-ownership,” which logically entails the freedom to destroy oneself (but also to sell oneself, which liberals cannot accept either), and extreme optimism, which generates reluctant acceptance. We observe the same reluctance with abortion and the pro-choice position: “abortion is bad, but people should be free to do it, but we have to get people to stop doing it because it’s inherently bad.”

    I believe suicide is good because I hold no belief in human life as having any kind of special status or any optimism about human future (such as a belief in Heaven or a belief in inexorable social progress). It is good for people to be in control of their future, and to decide when it should end. It is not as much that suicide is good in itself (after all, we all die some day, and that fact is not good or bad in itself) as the fact that forbidding people to commit suicide is a fundamental wrong which makes suicide good by comparison.

    Anti-right advocates keep whining about human dignity, but suicide is the height of human dignity, and nothing is more of an vicious attack against human dignity than to force sick people to writhe in pain like mangy dogs. “Human dignity” is always the first rationalization of the authoritarian, but they don’t know what human dignity is any more than they know with freedom is.

    Anti-right advocates and moderates think there is a paradox between suicide as an act of freedom and the fact that suicide nullifies one’s freedom. But this paradox doesn’t seem to come into play when we consider, for example, the actions of suicide bombers, or the actions of people who put their lives at great risk for a cause. The reason why we don’t think suicide bombers are paradoxical is because the very term “suicide bomber” evokes the reason for the action, and it is this reason which provides the explanation for the self-destroying actions. But suicides also have reasons for doing what they do. As long as we keep a suicide in the abstract as an act of freedom, then we’re obscuring the motives, and the paradox appears relevant. When we look at the underlying reasons, then we are no longer confused: the matter can simply be expressed as the fact that there are values greater than life for the sake of living.

    Indeed, I think it is clear that we all hold some values greater than survival. If you ask people if they’d prefer to live 80 years in jail or 79 years of a charmed life, I’m pretty sure everyone will answer the latter. It will do no good to reply that such a choice represents the “suicide” of one year of life. Mere life is not worth that much, and we know it. No human being is contented by the simple fact of existing.

    One may further reply that it is not the freedom to commit suicide that they find undesirable, but the suicide itself. But this sort of objection makes no sense to me. Why would you like the freedom to do something you find undesirable? I don’t like the freedom to utter hate speech, but I also know it is absolutely necessary in order to have any freedom of speech at all (people who confuse their personal dislike with objective facts are the ones fucking up free speech for the rest of us).

    There is no more crucial freedom than to be free to decide when one is to die, and how. After all, suicide is really a person’s only escape, however bad life gets.

    There is really no utilitarian reason for any society to outlaw suicide except the desire to slap a fake optimistic front to some people’s misery. Suicide is one of those things that angers people because it is a signal that there’s something wrong with their society, much like how atheists subconsciously remind religious people that the indoctrination they suffered through was useless. To admit that a suicide is in the right is a blow against all the illusions and delusions we mount to prevent ourselves from thinking about death, and the delusion that we are perpetuating ourselves through our children, our family, our religion, our country, and so on. It is a rejection of the “sanctity of life” that underlies all religions and statist ideologies.

    • mokhtar says:

      very interesting points in your study ,i think to decide whether committing sucide is right or wrong then the answer is we do not know because this answer depends on another questions such as what happens after the suicidal die? is there any life after death ? if there is life after death does that mean one who committed the sucide will have a better life than that one he already lived on earth ?so as you see sucide question is depending on an unknown future aspects that if they are verified then we can judge on suicide righteous or otherwise

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks for writing all this. I read the whole thing and found no comments. I appreciate that you laid out so much thoughtfulness on the subject, and your views seem to be very similar to mine, so… I guess I have nothing constructive to add, just felt you should have a response lol.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wow thanks for taking the time to write all that so that I could read it and contemplate it

    • L says:

      Thank you for expounding your thoughts. I have found it to be a very interesting and thought provoking discussion. I’m on this site at the moment as I am feeling hopeless. I’m not sure I want to cease living as I want to cease the pain of hopelessness. Your interesting discussion gave me a little sense of hope and possibility. So thank you

  144. David W says:

    Sorry, I wish I could edit my last post to comment on some of your legitimate concerns considering the position you are in as you may be asked to make this decision at some point. Of course this brings up a lot of issues for the doctors not only ethically and morally, but sadly even religious beliefs. That being said have you never had a patient or two who has had nothing but pure and utter suffering for decades with no relief from medications or therapy of any kind?

    In such extreme cases (like a lot of people replying on your site), wouldn’t your decision to allow them to end their life and finally find some kind of peace for once not be one that really doesn’t require a lot of deliberation on your part? I was going to use the word easy but that holds too much connotation and potentially confuse the intent of my question to you.

    Cheers

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      David,

      I appreciate this discussion and your willingness to try to understand my view as a mental health professional. To answer your question, the reality is that I actually haven’t had any clients who had “nothing but pure and utter suffering for decades with no relief from medications or therapy of any kind.” That’s not to say they don’t exist. Perhaps they do. I just haven’t met them.

      It makes me think of a favorite quote of mine from Graham Greene: “It is one of the strange discoveries a man can make that life, however you lead it, contains moments of exhilaration; there are always comparisons which can be made with worse times: even in danger and misery the pendulum swings.”

      I hesitate to include that quote, because I don’t mean to minimize, invalidate, or dismiss the genuine suffering of so many people out there. But I do think that even amid great suffering, the pendulum swings. People seldom if ever feel 100% miserable 100% of the time. There are fluctuations, and those fluctuations usually are what have kept them alive to this point.

      What I have observed, more in line with your question, is people who under the darkness of depression or other despair are unable to remember a time when they were not miserable. Their mind tricks them into thinking that they have relentlessly been miserable with no respite at all. Or they remember such times and think those were a fluke, a lie, a trick, or something else unreal. And then when their mood improves, their memories change, even if only a little.

      Again, I don’t mean to dispute the suffering of others. All it takes is the ability to read a newspaper (or, as you said, the comments on this site) to know that there’s too much suffering in this world. How I wish it weren’t so! Yet even suffering is constantly changing.

      Please understand that I’m not saying people should suffer or should “buck it up” and withstand their suffering. What I am saying, or at least trying to say, is that even abject suffering tends to have complexities that defy conversations such as ours.

      Thanks again for your contribution.

    • Suizou says:

      Suicide prevention is a form of violence.

  145. David W says:

    I think the essence of the problem here Stacey is that what you are asking for is impossible. You will never get this so called line you keep referring to. This isn’t something that can be measured like alcohol concentration in the blood.

    That why there are steps involved to determine if the person qualifies to have their life ended (see Sweden, Netherlands, Canada et al).

    It’s not like anyone is planning to open up a euthanasia drive through where anyone can just go and end their life without any sort of checks and balances in place.

    Frankly this really isn’t as intricate of of a problem as a some people make it out to be. You’ve read the stories shared on here (including my own). I can’t even fathom how anyone would be against euthanasia after reading what so many people are going through.

    And I really do hate to say it but your arguments are banal at the least. You are bringing up situations that are already being taken into consideration by those making this legislation. I know Canada will require two doctors to give approval to end ones life as an example.

    The time for questions are long over and the time for action is imperative.

    Ps: I’m not trying to be disrespectful, maybe just a bit frustrated at this point 🙂

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      David,

      I appreciate the points you raise. The Canada law applies only to cases of terminal illness, and even then several conditions must be met, per this website:

      “A person has a grievous and irremediable medical condition only if they meet all of the following criteria:
      (a) they have a serious and incurable illness, disease or disability;
      (b) they are in an advanced state of irreversible decline in capability;
      (c) that illness, disease or disability or that state of decline causes them enduring physical or psychological suffering that is intolerable to them and that cannot be relieved under conditions that they consider acceptable; and
      (d) their natural death has become reasonably foreseeable, taking into account all of their medical circumstances, without a prognosis necessarily having been made as to the specific length of time that they have remaining.”

      The line that I’m seeking isn’t philosophical or legal; it’s about when to try to prevent suicide in a person whose body is not failing. The difference might seem like splitting hairs, but in my case, I am bound by professional, ethical, and legal obligations to intervene when a person is at “imminent risk” of dying by suicide. (An exception will occur when our state implements the aid-in-dying law that was passed last week.) As a mental health professional, if I were to advocate for liberalizing this policy, I would need to be able to say for whom suicide should be allowed to occur without intervention, and I don’t know the answer to that, Switzerland and the Netherlands and similar countries notwithstanding.

      I didn’t find your comment disrespectful, and I thank you for your contribution to the discussion.

    • David W says:

      While that’s currently true of the Canadian law there are some caveats that must be mentioned. First and foremost it is not what the Supreme Court Of Canada’s decision was in regards to who could end their life. The Senate unfortunately made the law more restrictive. Thankfully the current law here is already being challenged (all of 10 days after the law was enacted) to bring it inline with what the Supreme Court originally declared.

      “The Supreme Court of Canada created an exception, after analyzing Canadian constitutional law in the case of Carter v. Canada (Attorney General), released at the beginning of February 2015. The Supreme Court declared that the prohibition in section 241(b) of the Criminal Code on assisting with suicide is unconstitutional to the extent that it prevents physician-assisted death for “a competent adult person who (1) clearly consents to the termination of life and (2) has a grievous and irremediable medical condition (including an illness, disease or disability) that causes enduring suffering that is intolerable to the individual in the circumstances of his or her condition.”

      As you can see there is no mention of imminent death (which is point B and D in your reply if I’m not mistaken). That was sadly added on later when the law was finally put in place. It also means it should hopefully be fairly easy to overturn the current law to ensure it follows the Supreme Courts decision on this topic.

      FYI the challenge is happening in British Columbia by Julia Lamb and the BCCLA

      Sorry for not posting links but my browser is not cooperating today.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Thanks for this information, David, about the Canadian situation. I will look up the information to learn more about it.

        As you know, some countries do permit assisted suicide or even euthanasia in the case of mental illness such as depression. My understanding is that suicide rates are not much higher in those areas, if at all, but I need to read the current literature.

        I actually think that permissive policies about suicide would save lives – that if people could know that they could die by suicide at any time without forced intervention, then they would be more willing to get professional help, or at least stick around to see if things change. But then I return to the same “where to draw the line?” vexation.

        A scenario in my mind is one of a mother whose adult child is intent on dying by suicide, holding a gun to their head, and by virtue of psychosis or substance intoxication not in a sound state of mind to make such a decision. She calls the police for help, and the police say, “Sorry, it’s their right to end their life. We can’t do anything to stop it.”

        Others might say, “Well, if it’s obvious the person’s not in a sound state of mind, then they should be stopped.” And then we fall into the same conundrum all over again: Who decides who’s in a sound state of mind? How is this evaluated without forcing the person into treatment for an evaluation about their state of mind? And so on….

    • Anonymous says:

      So wish such a drive in existed, though.

    • David W says:

      I couldn’t find a place to reply to your last post so hopefully this doesn’t screw up the timeline too much.

      I absolutely agree that just having the option of doctor assisted death could be enough to extend the lives of those wishing to die as there is the comfort of knowing there is a legal and legitimate way out when they finally make that choice.

      I think you may have taken my statement a bit too literally. While I’ve wanted to die for over 30 years now it doesn’t mean that I’ve never had a good day or two or have had hope that at some point in the future there may be some relief. I’m lucky to have maybe 5 days a year which I consider good days and one could say I’m in a good mood. But that I no way negates the fact that the time has come for my life to finally be over. I’ve fought for 30 years and have no fight left. Nor do I (or anyone else) deserve to live a life so miserable.

      I’m sorry but my biggest issues with your examples is that they are strawman arguments. None of these systems to allow for assisted dying include the ability to just shoot yourself if so desired. It’s a process involving medical professionals working with the person in question to determine if their situation warrants end of life. Not some free for all where anything goes. I’ll state it again, there will be checks and balances in place to determine feasibility.

      I can understand you and a lot of people (including myself) are concerned about what those checks and balances will end up being but I can’t see any example you’ve brought up that would pass any criteria that would be in place. Of course I may have missed some so excuse me if I’m incorrect.

      It’s akin to laws put in place for someone charged with murder for example. For the most part evidence is required and guilt beyond reasonable doubt is required to sentence someone to prison. Not to mention the degree of murder which needs to be established. Those are checks and balances to ensure (as much as possible) that the right people are charged and innocent people go free. Of course it’s not perfect but there is no such thing as a perfect system and that will include how this ends up turning out.

      They won’t be allowing someone who has been depressed for a week to be allowed assisted suicide. A lot stricter policies will be in place to prevent if not all, but most of the concerns you seem to have.

    • Danny says:

      David, Your choice of the word “banal” is excellent here. In my comment, I used the word ‘rhetoric”, but it basically boils down to meaning the same thing. It sounds like you and I are on the same page here, and judging by the looks of things, we are both Canadian as well..? I agree with a lot of what you’ve said.

      The advice given here, despite being well-intentioned, is banal rhetoric. End of story. Most cases of anti-suicide counselling usually falls under that category, because the therapist can’t put themselves in our exact circumstances, and they CERTAINLY cannot put themselves in your body where you feel all the emotional and physical pain. That is why psychotherapy often fails here. We rely on that fallacious assumption.

      One thing I can’t help but notice about the physician-assisted euthanasia “requirements” is that it only allows people who have “terminal” illness. Well, what about people who have NON-FATAL, incurable, long-standing, chronic illnesses/disorders that are NOT helped by traditional therapies? These are the ones who are exempt from consideration, even though they can feel imprisoned in their own bodies. In cases such as these (of which I personally fall into), I have to reduce myself to accepting some other human (1 or 2 doctors) telling me that I shouldn’t have the right to die because I’m not suffering that badly, in their eyes? That’s horseshit no matter how you cut it.

      I’ve become very angry, bitter and cynical over this because it seems like terminal patients are the only ones allowed to be considered since they will be passing away shortly anyway. People with non-fatal disorders can be “treated” with expensive medications that incur MORE side effects which require even MORE expensive drugs, and while this is happening they still pay the monthly bills and pay their monthly taxes. That’s what the agenda seems to be here…….MONEY.

      This whole world is backwards and the legislation that is passed forces people to jump through an exceedingly large number of hoops in hope of an escape from their pain, while leaving out others completely. To me, this is not only inhumane but it’s criminal as well. Nobody asked us if we wanted to be brought into this world, and now we’re told that we can’t leave. BULL….SHIT.

  146. PJ says:

    Absolutely agree with Chad N. that you have a logical fallacy in your argument, Ms. Freedenthal. Suicide can be wrong in some cases, yet the correct thing to do in others. When a person has a temporary condition or reduced ability to make choices (such as a child), suicide is inappropriate. But where a person has wanted suicide for many years and has one or more health issues that preclude living a “normal” life, suicide may be appropriate.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      PJ and Chad N,

      I can understand that my comments seem like a “logical fallacy” in my “argument.” I’m afraid I didn’t make myself clear in my original response to Bob. I’m actually not trying to make an argument. I am truly curious about where to draw the line between suicide that should be stopped and suicide that should be allowed to continue without intervention. I do not know the answer.

      Here in Colorado, where I live, we just approved a bill allowing for physician aid in dying, also called by many people “assisted suicide.” I support that law. Someone in the final months of life should have the ability to control when and how they go. But to me, there’s a huge gulf between people at that extreme end of the spectrum and those at the other end, like the child or person delirious with fever who I invoked in my original comment. And if we were to assume that people have the right to end their life in some cases, I struggle with where to draw that line between when it’s a right and when it’s a problem. So my question, “Where do you draw the line?” comes from true curiosity, not a desire to argue or philosophize.

      Chad offered a thoughtful proposal for how that question can be answered on an individual basis. Yet the question of where to draw the line still remains, whether it’s us discussing it on this website or a group of people trying to answer the question in some type of hearing.

  147. x says:

    trigger warning

    what if you have been abused your whole life by various people, family and non-family, have had people who considered themselves your “friend” violently rape you and threaten to kill you when they know you are suicidal and then encourage you to commit suicide, have extremely severe ptsd because of it, have gone to years of therapy, and new people in your life always end up abusing you as well because they take advantage of your vulnerability. i have been suicidal for most of my life, since i was 7 fucking years old. tell me it’s a temporary problem. tell me i’ll change my mind. and don’t you dare victim blame me for the things that have happened to me.

    • Nikki says:

      You have to wait for that one person to change everything.. Waiting your whole life is worth it. Try to get positive, just keep living.

  148. PJ says:

    I think you are right in most situations. But there are a lot of exceptions. If a person takes time to adjust to a bad situation and still wants to die, shouldn’t they becable to? Also, your argument revolves around change. What if a person has wanted to die for 10 years? Or 20 years?

  149. N/A N/A says:

    Very patronizing article.

  150. David W says:

    I’ll try to keep this short. I’m 44 now and for 30+ years I’ve lived with med resistant depression and sleeping disorders. Not to mention neck and back pain that in the last few years has become permanent and unrelenting.

    The sleeping issues meant I could never complete even high school. I’m sure depression exacerbated things a fair amount.

    I’ve never been able to keep a job for longer than 2 months due to not getting restorative sleep and eventually always sleeping though my alarms (I’d have 6 set plus another in another room).

    From depression to the 3 sleeping disorders and now chronic pain there is no reason to keep living. I’m single, no kids and I’ve lost the ability to even work.

    I’m a smart person and could have accomplished anything which kills the psyche that much more. I can’t take the pain anymore, I can’t take the exhaustion anymore, and I can’t take the loneliness anymore.

    This is no life for anyone to live and frankly no life at all. How can we as a society consider this acceptable in any manner whatsoever. There should be doctors lining up at my (and others in my position) doorstep offering me an end to this unbearable pain. Is that not the oath they signed? Is that not what being a caring human is all about.

    Funny how we care so much about our animals that we have the compassion to euthanize them when the time is right but God forbid we extend this to our fellow man/woman.

    • Nicolette says:

      If you want to talk you can email me at 0musicmind@gmail.com

    • Jeanette says:

      I have a comment and question about intellectual ability, mental slowness and low self esteem.

      Let me clarify what I mean by ‘intellectually slow person’. Obviously I am not referring to the person who meets the criteria for an Intellectual Disability (also called mental retardation)…. I am talking about the person who has the ability to learn necessary academic skills, but at a rate and depth BELOW AVERAGE same age peers. In order to grasp new concepts, this person needs more time, more repetition, and often more resources from teachers to be successful. Typically, this person has great difficulty with new and complex reasoning which makes new concepts difficult to learn.

      These slow learners are prone to much anxiety and low self image which goes unnoticed by many in society. They often feel ‘stupid’ and begin hating school at an early age. Day-to-day academic life can be very draining and yet many somehow manage to make it through the system and through high school (in the United States).

      The psychologist and intelligence researcher Linda Gottfredson wrote a good piece titled Why g Matters: The Complexity of Everyday Life. An excerpt:

      “Life is replete with uncertainty, change, confusion, and misinformation, sometimes minor and at times massive. From birth to death, life continually requires us to master abstractions, solve problems, draw inferences, and make judgments on the basis of inadequate information. Such demands may be especially intense in school, but they hardly cease when one walks out the school door…”

      Question:

      Can you sympathize with a person who says that one of their major reasons for contemplating suicide often (besides exhaustion) is that they just don’t feel competent to handle the mental demands of life?

  151. Anonymous says:

    No. I don’t think ALL problems are temporary. For instance, a chronic illness with no cure is not temporary and can cause unnecessary suffering for your entire life.

  152. Scott says:

    I’ve had back pain and degenerative disc disease for about 10 years that has increased over time. I also have chronic fatigue and stomach pain and symptoms that make it very uncomfortable to go into public/work. Its a nightmare, I have rectal leakage that smells awful. I’ve sought and received various medical treatments for these things but nothing seems to help much, I’m not a candidate for surgery. Everyday I wake up thinking “oh hell, here I go again” and my back usually feels like a brick and many days I have nausea/migraines and my arm and hand are numb on the opposite side I’m laying. My body is breaking down and I’m 36. Not to mention I’ve had bacterial meningitis/hydrocephalus and have a shunt. I have a sharp pain from nerve damage caused by my last shunt surgery in 2009, which also makes the left side of my face numb many days. The idea of enduring this for another 30+ years scares the hell out of me. Any terminal illness would be a HUGE relief but that probably wont happen. All I can think of is a way to get relief and peace. I think I’m mentally tough but I think I’m at my limit.

  153. Serapio says:

    Death IS inevitable and most often unplanned and out of anybody’s control. To die is to permanently stop the existence of life. Whether by accident, incident, murder or assassination, war, or one’s own hand is really irrelevant in the end. A person realizing they have made a mistake after jumping off the Golden Gate bridge can easily translate into, “i am not ready to go”. But, is it not possible that the murder victim or accident victim could have the very same “reluctance”? I do really believe that no one wants to give up the gift of life. I also believe that going on through life may not be the best thing, and not only for the main individual, but for the sake of others as well. After all, when a criminal sentenced to die is executed, aren’t “family” of the victim allowed to view for their own personal satisfaction? Because, they WANT the guilty criminal to die and they want to SEE the execution! AND, the law fulfills the ending of that life in that manner. BTW, “murder” conviction in the 1st degree or 2d degree, or whatever “degree” probably does NOT matter to the dead victim. A statement in the bible says that if a lion kills a man, that lion should be put to death. That statement does not bring in to question the “intent” or the “manner” or the “state of mind” of the lion.
    Yes. Death is final and YES, IT COMES TO ALL.

  154. Bob says:

    I agree life is fluid. This plays out in a multitude of ways – to quote John Lennon – life is what happens to you while you make other plans.

    However given this, and that EVERYTHING about life is fluid, using this argument as an excuse to stop someone who genuinely wants to end their life, regardless of circumstance, is wrong. People make snap decisions, people carefully plan out their next move – it doesn’t matter. Your life is yours – your body is yours. Your experiences – pain, joy, sorrow, happiness are all yours. No one else should have the right to dictate what you do to your body, and if dying by your own means in your own way is your choice, then that should be respected regardless of others views on the matter.

    Sure there are people who may well regret their decision to end it – not that those who are successful at it can be asked their view once they have died. But I believe if you genuinely try, regardless of success that was your decision and should be respected as your choice. If people want help they will seek it – it shouldn’t be foisted on them, nor should they be locked up to stop them from doing something they genuinely want to do for themselves.

    I will clarify that the above relates to you wanting to take your own life. Not someone else’s. And, if you care for others who cannot care for themselves then it is the hallmark of decency to consider those you are leaving behind. But ultimately it IS about you. Life is inherently selfish, and the arguments of people making it out as being so are also selfish in stopping you due to this moral argument – they would rather keep you here over their own selfish views opposed to respecting your choice.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      Bob,

      You make excellent points. Many of the comments on this site have challenged my ideas and caused me to stretch my thinking. A problem that I run into intellectually is, would everything you say above still apply if the person is a child? How about if the person is an adult with 106 degrees fever who, in fever-induced delirium, wants to end their life, even though we can reasonably assume that when their delirium is treated they will return to their baseline mood (which, for the sake of this example, did not include suicidal wishes). And if you allow that these both are reasonable exceptions to your argument, then where does one draw the line? That is, if suicidal drives appear to be fueled by temporary despair (like a fever), then should the person be prevented from taking his or her life? My own sense is, yes, the person should be stopped. But that’s no surprise, I’m sure, given my stance on preventing suicide. I’m curious about your views, as well as the views of others who believe suicide is a person’s right.

    • Bob says:

      Hi Stacey

      I’ll admit there is possibly a philosophical debate here which can always translate down harder to individual circumstances.

      In your post you pose the issues of a child, or, of a person temporarily ill. Perhaps applying this more widely, do we as a society intervene where we make an assessment (valid or not) that the person making such a choice isn’t right in their mind, or in a state to make such a monumental decision as to end their life?

      The answer in my opinion to this, is i genuinely do not know. But what I do know/feel, is that to decide on someone’s behalf what is right for them, or to start forcibly making such decisions, is a slippery slope. There is no objective decision making in life as it is all coloured by our individual experiences or views – and this plays out in all aspects of the human condition. We sugar-coat the notion of objectivity, but underlying all decisions are an element of FEELING. From those who advocate right to life, all the way through to right to die.

      I agree it is sad when a person dies – and no one should be differentiating between intentional or non, even if they have had a good innings or not.

      But it’s not my place to judge nor influence as it wasn’t my time here – it was theirs.

      • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

        Bob,

        Thank you for your thoughtful response to my question. I think we’re actually saying the same thing, just from different ends of the spectrum. It seems like you’re saying it’s hard to draw the line about when suicide is wrong. I’m saying it’s hard to draw the line about when suicide is a right.

        Your last line is very thought provoking. “It wasn’t my time here – it was theirs.” I can tell you with absolute certainty that there are people who, once their suicidal crisis or longstanding suicidal feelings resolve, are glad to have yet more time here. So, intervening with those people still honors that it is their time, in the same way that administering medical treatment to someone shot in a robbery serves their interests. (That’s just one example.) We don’t know who will be grateful to be alive in a year or many years’ time, although we do know that the vast majority of people who survive a suicide attempt decide afterward to stay alive.

        I stand firmly on the side of suicide prevention, except in cases of terminal illness when a physician could prescribe a medication that would make death less frightening and painful for the dying person. Yet as I said in my original reply to your comment, the comments on this site have stretched my thinking. I do wonder if there are times that mental pain should be considered the same as terminal illness. And then I go back to how many people recover from such intense mental pain and are grateful to be alive (or at least no longer want to die), and I feel a responsibility to err on the side of safety. And then I read another sound comment about the other side of the argument … and then I am back to my original question of where do we draw the line.

    • Chad N. says:

      This is actually directed to Ms. Freedenthal. You are trying to apply a logical fallacy to this discussion in that because you can find a possible exception to Bob’s individual choice argument invalidates the argument. If you flip the argument and say you have an elderly patient that has expressed their entire life that they wished to be euthanized rather than fade away due to alzheimer’s for example. Then as the disease sets in they have lucid periods of dementia in which they can’t even remember their own name let alone their disease and therefore don’t express a desire to die. Does this now temporary condition invalidate their life long position so that when the dementia fades you would have them informed they no longer have the right to choose? If you allow that exception then where do you draw the line? This is the logical flaw lies. There is no convenient line to draw. This is messy and hard every time. That’s why it’s so difficult for society, people only want easy answers.

      We are talking about a more than infinitely complex system. Each individual is different and even if they weren’t each individual’s circumstance is different. The situations must be judged on a case by case basis with deliberation every time. That’s the answer. It will likely not be pleasant often and always weigh on the minds of all involved from then on but that doesn’t mean we as a society should pretend it’s not worth doing.

      My current idea on how to handle this situation is simple. Use the same method that we currently use to determine legality of society ending a life. Stand up a jury system with a side to argue both for and against the requester truly wanting this. Given it’s not a criminal trial the process could be streamlined so you come in, hear both sides of the case and deliberate ending with an anonymous vote. Take the decision from the individual doctor or lawyer and give it to the people. Let them decide to grant permission, refuse it or delay their decision and come back to it on at agreed time. My only concern is that our society is not mature enough to ask what’s the right answer for another instead of trying to force the right answer for ourselves onto others. The difference between “what would I want in this situation” and “what do they want in this situation” seems confusing to most people but I think we can learn.

      I myself hope to die as soon as possible. Natural causes would be great but unlikely so I’m trying to figure out euthanasia. That’s what’s right for me in my mind but I know it’s not right for everyone. If I can figure out that difference I have faith that others can as well.

  155. Karen says:

    The only reason I’m here is because I can’t stand to inflict pain on others. “Life can change…it can get better!” Hasn’t in 30 years. It has been less bad. It has been tolerable. And yet always so blinking exhausting. I’m not even one of those folks that hate themselves. I have a lovely support network, nice friends, great family, I am well off. And yet it is so pointless. And there is so much busy work. And I’ve seen it all before. I’ve seen all the marvellous people who inspire me before. Inspire me for what? The human race is, on the whole, a pack of macaques, throwing poop at each other and blustering in their ignorance. Yes I love my individual people and I will stay to not cause them distress, but it doesn’t stop me from hoping for a stray lightening bolt or a quick and dirty heart attack.

  156. Nicola says:

    I think about dying every day I’ve tried pills and hanging myself but unfortunately I’ve failed for one reason or another, I should be able to go to my GP and have assistance with ending my life.

    • pained says:

      is there something that makes you feel this

    • satvik m says:

      Don’t die.

    • kathy says:

      Absolutely do not!!! My SO hung himself 1 year ago.You are beautiful! You leave with all the problems and learn the solutions were here. He is miserable he lets me know. Do your homework on what really happens to those who take their lives never mind the TORMENT we are left with.Stay for yourself.

  157. pained says:

    hi since my spinal fusion for a disease in my spine that broke my back I have lived in absolute pain. everyday. I have an extremely awesome wife and 4 beautiful children ages 1 – 13. it brings me to tears to know that I won’t be around 1 day to see all their accomplishments but the pain has never stopped. I work full time as an assistant manager at a retail setting overnights. the work is heavy but it doesn’t matter if I’m at home or work the pain increases as the day does. for a few years I have contemplated the effects that my loved ones will endure. but I also think of the pain and heartbreak they endure now and none of them know the full extent of how bad it really is. but suicide is not something I have taken lightly. I’ve started to write my kids letters to help easy the pain they will feel and nothing would make my wife understand at all. but as the days goes by I get closer to the time when I must have everything ready cause I feel it inside my body the pain growing. and I’m not sure if it’s weeks or another year but I feel it is only when not if

    • Puck says:

      I understand how you feel, and your pain along with the pain I also feel everyday and many others as well. I see it as those who make rules on medications live a life where they can freely hurt and kill people along with their families without any consequences in this world. Things such as this make me and many others realize that we are not just living in the shadow of death, but it must be hell as if there were and afterlife it could not ne as bad as here. Many hurt and kill others by their actions and it is perfectly legal because they work for the government. Same can be said for all countries. We as people created government, and it is the most oppressive and leads to more death and suffering than anything else that we have created. All the privately held arms in the world could never kill as many as governments have in the last century. It is all about control… No surprise that for the most part people with psychopathic tendencies get into office all around the world more so than not. Merkel has been responsible for letting people into germany unchecked and they set fires, rape, rob, etc. Few of us are surprised by this because why else would we also have difficulty getting needed relief from pain, because of those that promote suffering un the world. What happened to to days that such people were often taken to the invention of a French doctor, and Louis 16th and many other such people that caused harm lost their heads.
      My friend please do come up with some ideas to solve the problems as some have with legal medical pot. All medications should be legal, and you and many other would not be suffering, and could die a natural death, not one from OD or some other misfortune to just end your suffering. Move to Oregon or california or another state. Somewhere you can get medications to enjoy life again.

  158. Common Sense says:

    Eventually death takes us all, it is inevitable and unavoidable. People treat death as something to be feared instead of something that is simply a part of life. No one lives forever and to do so would be the mental equivalent of dying a thousand deaths over and over again. You will die. It should be up to the individual to choose when. Whether it is sooner or later.

    • Charlotte says:

      I am with you Common Sense. In the progressive town where I live there is a big “Death and Dying” conversation going on and every week community organizations giving lectures on death and dying….the one true common denominator every single person on the planet shares…yet no one wants to discuss it.

      I worked in the hospice industry for awhile and witnessed on a daily basis patients being discharged from hospitals to hospice care 1-2 weeks and sometimes just days before they died.

      In just about every scenario I witnessed, the doctor, families and the patient all seemed to have been 1) uninformed or in denial of the loved ones terminal illness; 2) the patient was being treated up until the very end by drugs that were not curing their terminal illness and they were suffering with horrible side effects; 3) the patient and family member never had a conversation with their doctor about going into hospice (patients can be referred to hospice up to 6 months prior to a projected end of life prognosis); 4) patients and family members being “shocked” and “heartbroken” and “angry” when their loved one ends up in an emergency room near the end of their life only to be discharged to hospice the next day where they watched their loved one slip away in disbelief.

      My personal experiences as a funeral director’s daughter growing up in a funeral home, my career providing direct patient care in healthcare for decades treating terminally ill patients, and my experience working in hospice have all validated my belief that each and everyone one of us has the right to plan and execute their own death and to discuss their plan with the friends and families. And they should be able to do that without judgement or shame from any one. Generally speaking, as a culture we need to be speaking about death and dying more openly moving forward.

      I support assisted suicide not only for the terminally ill but for any human being who is suffering in any way and there is no recourse for improvement. When walking through a nursing home, or assisted living or even a high end senior living or memory care facility, I do not see people who are thriving nor are they happy. They have been put in these places because society does not value them anymore, they are sick or poor or can’t live alone anymore so their families want to get them settled somewhere so they can stop having to worry about them (we are one of the few cultures in the world who do not revere our elders nor do we personally care for them and keep them integrated into our communities) and so we “find them a home”.

      When I see vets out on the street corners begging for food or money and they are alone and covered in rags and most likely suffering from a mental or physical illness I believe in assisted suicide: when a person confined to a wheel chair for life who confides in me that they would rather die and meet their maker than continue to be a burden on family and friends and be confined to a life they do not want, I believe in assisted suicide: when people are suffering from depression, bipolar disorders or any other number of mental and emotional illnesses that severely impact their lives in a negative and non productive manner I believe in assisted suicide: when an elder, or anybody for that matter, finds themselves alone, with no family and friends, with no financial resources, no home, no access to affordable health care and no one who loves them or cares for them or has the time to help them, and especially if these people live in America where there are no resources to truly help them and improve their life, I believe in assisted suicide.

      Assisted suicide is humane. When I think of all the people every year around the globe who attempt or have succeeded in killing themselves in inhumane ways by gunshot, hangings, drug overdoses, slitting of the wrists, bathtub drownings or jumping out of windows or off bridges, I am for assisted suicide. If people have made the decision that they cannot go on any longer they should have the option of a dignified and medically induced death. Not everyone in America is living the dream. Not everyone in America is loved or cared for. Not everyone in America can afford to live in a home and have enough to eat. Not everyone in America has someone to depend on or take them in during the tough times. Not everyone in America is healthy and strong. For some people in America, life is to be endured and these people suffer relentlessly every day of their lives. For some people in America death is what will bring peace.

      With the baby boomers aging out over the next 10-15 years I do believe more and more of that demographic will consider assisted suicide if they find themselves alone, poor, or living with a chronic or terminal illness.

      I remember reading a book of short stories by Kurt Vonnegut book (Science Fiction) called “Welcome to the Monkey House” One of the stories was about your “expiration day”. The planet had become so crowded and science and medicine was so advanced keeping people alive much longer than they should be, the government implemented a death lottery so to speak. If you were over a certain senior age you would get a lottery ticket in the mail that designated your termination date. It was just like a birth announcement but it was your death announcement instead.

      Society accepted it, death was out in the open and discussed with your families and friends. It was a planned event and on your termination date you met all your friends and family at a restaurant for your last dinner all together and then you were escorted to your death by way of lethal injection. Even to my 13 year old mind, this seemed the most humane way to perish. I for one do not want to leave my death to chance. If we are all dying I want to be in control of my death. And nobody should judge it or argue it or try to stop a person from planning their death. Yes there needs to be a standard of assessment certainly but I do believe we are moving toward a similar model of death and dying as the author Kurt Vonnegut foresaw half a century ago.

      I think nearly everything a science fiction author writes about comes true.

  159. chris s says:

    death should be welcomed not prevented. even in cases of said “mental illnesses” it should be left up to the individual ONLY. its the individual’s life not anyone else’s. since when did mankind change their minds to say someone else can make choices for another as if the other person’s life is their own?

    • Tom Hal says:

      “since when did mankind change their minds to say someone else can make choices for another as if the other person’s life is their own?” HEAR, HEAR!

  160. Anonymous says:

    I hate myself. I hate everything about me. But I have a child I love more. So, I can’t be suicidal. I hope sometimes an accident will take me. Sometimes I hope love will take me.

  161. Anonymous says:

    I was suicidal when I was 3. A boy was playing too rough and I couldn’t breathe and I panicked. After that, and got a little bit older I tried to hold my breath for death. Then I imagined what a butter knife could do. I was very little and not sexually abused. I have extremely young memories. So I know my self hatred wasn’t caused by abuse. So, why do I hate myself so much? I think if I stop wanting anything, nothing matters.

  162. Anonymous says:

    I have given up. Life is not worth living. Death is on my mind frequently, and I wish to build up the courage to finally end my miserable existence. I never asked to be born on this earth. To experience pain and suffering daily… I can’t handle it anymore. I want out.

    • Anonymous says:

      To read your words, makes me sad–not pity but sad. I’m sorry to hear you are in pain. As a religious person that I am, I pray that you will find your peace and joy.

    • Puck says:

      First of all none of us asked to be born into this world. Also Buddha said that life is suffering that is one of the many noble truths. You have to choose as each of us do, what do you find interesting and seek it out. Sitting in front of a tv is one of the worst things that people can do. It is filled with programming to make people feel bad about themselves. Is the idea that you would be a better person if you buy their garbage. Seek out things away from tv and magazines. Have you thought about being a goth?

    • Andrew says:

      I know the feeling but each new day offers something new and a new positive potential for your life even if it is really really small to begin with. The world is a cruel mistress but each day you can pull yourself from miserable existence into a meaningful life day by day. I am not fully there yet but I know the darkest hours of my life I am glad I did not go through ending it all.

      That thought that you never asked to born is a true one but perhaps the existence in you before you were born wanted the chance to be on this earth, listen to the quiet voice in yourself and not the loud one that can’t handle it anymore.

    • Anonymous says:

      What are you afraid of? Death is your end, so make a list of everything that scares you and do them. Then, decide, was it that scary?

    • Anonymous says:

      As someone who feels the same way, I must ask the question…what do you want out of this life? Sitting back and waiting for it will fail. If you don’t fear death, than why fear life? It’s all you have. Your life is all you have so why fear anything? Certainly, death is worse than anything you want. Right? Fuckem. Be who you are.

  163. Tom Hal says:

    I’ve been reading these comments (thanks to the auto-inform function) every few days since this is one of the most important modern (would be) rights battles to me. I want to respond to and encourage–is that the right word?–everyone posting here so much of their searing truth. But I don’t, out of fearing to offend. If only policy makers would listen to the perspectives, feelings, experiences of millions of adults begging for a medically competent and humane exit from life. As others here and elsewhere put it, it’s irrational at once to make life difficult (especially for those who already cannot manage life’s stresses), and at the same time to forbid those who want out to leave.

    If you cannot care for people, and you argue the system cannot be made gentler, then minimally allow those who cannot play your game the freedom to leave the room.

    • Joan Of Arc says:

      I feel like in the end the decisions are ours.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Joan, I agree with you, that the decision is ours, despite what “the authorities” say. Those experienced enough with the mental health system know–or quickly learn–that if they are serious about leaving the last thing they should do is announce it, as the system is empowered to incarcerate those who set in motion their departure.

      But without professional, near-certain means available, the results of the decision are far too often extremely painful. The last thing someone who’s overwhelmed with a lifetime of pain needs on making a decision to leave is to suffer while leaving–or worse, to suffer and then not even succeed in leaving.

  164. Cynthia says:

    Being a chronically ill person that has died and been brought back 5 times, i feel it is up to the person to choose to continue to suffer and to just be allowed to say i have had enough. I had dnr orders in place and they still went against me. Have a heart, this is not living it is merely surviving amoung the living. Waiting for the end, but it seems to take its time….Legalize assisted suicide in all states

  165. Linda says:

    This is not by any means an end of life situation… a person paralyzed trapped in their own brain, inability to express any wishes or desires !

  166. Anonymous says:

    Well people want to die because them might be having problems with there family or friends and no one cares about them

    • Anonymous says:

      What if nobody cares? Not one person cares? Does that mean no one will? If you are my age, no one will. Or maybe, you haven’t made the effort to find your world. Or maybe you have. Maybe, there is something in this life that makes you happy. Focus on that and a brand new world opens up to you.

    • Sandra says:

      thats right like me

  167. Paul says:

    I do not think that suicides should always be prevented, but on the other hand.

    There are those that would not be even thinking of suicide if our systems worked properly in the first place.

    We have people that due to lack of money and regulations suicide is basically their only option, and I see this as terribly wrong.

    We as a society should not be pushing people to the point that they basically have no other option.

    Those people should be stopped, only if we are going to hold those accountable that pushed them to that point in the first place.

    Due to the corruption that we have in this country I really do not see that happening anytime soon unfortunately.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Paul, are you a US citizen? I ask because, otherwise, the postage might be quite expensive to mail to you your gold star. Terrific comment, mate.

    • Paul says:

      Tom, I live in southern california. I have seen Kaiser nearly kill me, my wife and a number of my friends due to refusal to do simple tests. Also I am in pain much of the time because we live in a society that thinks that using pain killers make people high. The only high that I and most that I know have ever had is a brief relief from pain that is much like being on fire electrocuted and drawn and quartered. Of course people are happy they feel like they did before they were injured.
      What I personally do not get is the live at all costs mentality. There are many things that are far worse than death, such as pain 24/7 being burned alive. Or as many of us would say in constant pain. Pain so much that we no longer enjoy the taste of food, no longer get really any more pleasure from sex than just holding someone close. This is a cruel world only made more so by control freaks that are more worried about the possibility that someone might get a buzz from a medication or potentally abuse it, than take into account that without such medications life really has no enjoyment. I quit worrying about possible health problems, the possibility of heart or stroke. Also in a way look forward to the possibility of a full on nuclear war, as my pain and suffering and that of others will be gone along with those that get enjoyment by having us live in pain each and every day. I in no way have any ill feelings towards myself, but if a God was coming that was going to wipe out most of mankind as in the great flood I would say that he would be right for doing so as it is just as wrong to let people harm innocents as it is to do it yourself. We as a species have the ability and have shown to be the most destructive and cruel of all the animals on this planet. However there are exceptions, some strive to be better, and some even strive to be Ubermen that look to make the world better for all, but unfortunately they are a minority.

    • Paul says:

      What gets me down is back pain that hurts worse than a 3rd degree burn. Getting medication to get the pain down is very difficult due to the CDC saying that opiates don’t help chronic pain. Also reclassification of hydrocodone. In addition morphine does not help a whole lot.

      It is because of the level of pain and the great difficulty of getting any doctor these days to prescribe pain medication so I can function that I have been thinking of suicide. It is very sad that I have been forced to the point of thinking about suicide because of laws being more important than my life. I love myself and my family, but when I have the franchise tax board and others after me because I am hurting so much most of the time that I am unable to fill out basic paperwork that should be a breeze to anyone with the legal, science and engineering education I have. Most of the time I am unable to figure out how to send people bills. This is insane that I have to live with such debilitating pain. My family and many others are worried about me. However it is illegal for me to make what I need to function and difficult to get doctors to help me. Death is the easiest solution, but it will do the most harm. However that looks to be the final result as I just can’t take care of myself as I should be able to do so because it has been made illegal for me to do so.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Paul, I’m sorry I’m only now replying to your comments. First, and most importantly, I’m terribly sorry for your pain. I get what you’re saying. Living with chronic pain can evaporate all pleasures. And those who are not living with chronic, extreme pain cannot fathom what you’re going through. Yet they tell you how you should live your life–what you should find bearable. Reprehensible.

      And you’re also right that our concern for addiction, legally and medically, has created a culture hostile to those living with chronic pain. Together with the corruption of insurance companies, the challenge of enduring worsening pain through the decades for many is just insurmountable.

      Maybe worst of all, eventually those who are NOT living with chronic pain (may) choose to abandon those who are. They call it self-preservation. Funny how we’re free to abandon people, but still, those whom we’ve abandoned we refuse to allow to exit life.

      Again, I’m terribly, terribly sorry you’re in pain. I wish I could take it away.

  168. Ddp says:

    I truly believe that if an individual who is contemplating suicide confides in someone enough to tell them…well, I don’t think they will actually commit suicide. Instead, it’s a last ditch effort and a cry for help. Most people who finish the deed don’t say anything and most of the time, friends & family have no idea how bad things really are. Suicide is not a cowardly, selfish or selfless act, but a relief. A relief, no more pain, agony, misery or suffering. Unless, you have been in a similar situation or dealt with severe or major depression it’s difficult to relate or understand for that matter. You have no idea what the other person was feeling, what they dealt with on a regular basis or the struggles they endured. The ones who expect someone to live in so much pain & misery are the ones who are being selfish!

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      This is beautifully said. I do want to make one correction, though. Research studies have found that most people who die by suicide did communicate their wishes to someone else (often more than one “someone else”) before doing so, usually a friend or family member. I add this information only so that people will not minimize the risk if someone they know discloses a wish to die by suicide. Telling others does not mean the person is not truly in danger of ending their life.

    • Heber says:

      Finally someone who speaks the truth. Thanks so much for that please post everywhere.

  169. Anonymous says:

    No they should not be stopped if a person has been thinking of suicide for ages. If it is something maybe for a year or so then they should be stopped

  170. Heber says:

    If there is a possibility of getting better then yeah but after years of suffering then why put people through what you wouldn’t put a animal through. Have a heart.

  171. Lewis E says:

    It’s strange when you sincerely give thought to ending your own life. Personally I have a rather logical method of thinking. It can be both a boon or a hinderance.

    I’ve been playing with the thought of cutting ties for around eight years. I’m 24 years old, average Job, decent education and a caring family. I’ve never had a real interest in starting a relationship with someone. My sex live is non-existent and my sexual drive even more so.

    Many will sit and list off their reasons for ending it all, and many others will try to categorise these individuals. Giving them a “label” so to speak. I.e. Depressed or mentally unstable etc. In my own opinion, these labels exist to make the sheer thought of suicide acceptable to others. “If we can categorise it, we can try to medicate it; understand it.”

    Well, if I may I’ll share something I stumbled across when I was much younger.

    Growing up, I was always taught to think ahead. See plan your road ahead before flying blind. This, I now know and see as mental conditioning. I was conditioned in such a way as to always worry. Worry about bills, who may be a friend who may not. Worry about if I’ll grow old alone, or if I got the perfect grade on my exams. Think of the future and worry your ass off thinking about everything that could go wrong. This way if I’ll do everything in my power to stay on the right path always worrying always concerned about what may lie ahead.

    I can confidently say I’m not depressed, I have no real gripes with who I am as a person and I couldn’t care less what anyone else may think of me.

    I weigh 310lbs, and spend most of my time either working, or listening / playing music.

    However, I’ve always thought to myself, why?

    Why work when I don’t care about money? Why socialise if I don’t care what others think? Why eat healthy if I don’t really fear death? Why excersize if I don’t fear about my phisique?

    Why?

    And there isn’t an answer, many will try to justify it by saying, what about your family? Or what about your dreams or ambitions? Or some will even say you’ll eventually find a way to cope.

    What if there was someone out there like myself that didn’t see the point in existing? People thrive by defining goals. Oh’ I’ll buy my house when I’m 27, or I’ll get married by 30. What if someone didn’t see the point in defining goals. Ultimately we all end up in the ground anyway? Right?

    And yes some can say, “it’s all about the experience of life…” what experience?

    From what I gather a nine to five job, juggling what people think of you and trying to keep up with the trends of today are all superficial? What’s the point? It always equals the same result.

    I can’t comment for most but I don’t fear death. I really don’t, I fear what may be after it. But only because I don’t know what that is.

    I’m not religious, I have no thoughts on the supernatural ongoings; or even a belief in reincarnation. But I still don’t know.

    Ultimately what I’m trying to say is, I want to cut ties. I know how to and I’m not afraid of the process. However it’s not because I’m depressed or mentally ill, lonely or for any other reasons you might think.

    I just wanna quit. I’f I were to try to explain it really simply, it’s kinda like exiting a game. You quit because your bored. I guess you could call it that. Boredom. I’m bored of this life and the sorry excuse for existence people call living. So why continue.

    If I’m alive 60 years from now, I’ll still be thinking the same way. The only difference would be that I would be thinking, what was the point in that?

    Ultimately I guess I’m frustrated with how people always categorise suicide. Oh he had depression, or she was clinically mental. What about the guy that just wants to quit simply because he can.

    • Puck says:

      Louis, your words do reflect life. They go along with many of the great thinkers and philosophers in recorded history. In fact Monty Python did a movie about it called the meaning of life. A few other things that you may find interesting one is The God Delusion, and another is by Peter Gilmore his book on Satanism. You may find some meaning in Modern Satanism. As you said no fear of death, not sure if there is even anything after life.

      Something that most do not get (mainly the Faithful) is why go on when you have nothing really good to look forward to in life. If life is nothing but suffering no pleasures. It is not really life, but purely just existence. For life there needs to be balance. Even Buddha said life is suffering, but when existence is only suffering and pain with pain more and more each day. One has to be into enjoying harm coming to them to go on. One should not live to the point that they are suffering to the point of writing on the walls with bodily fluids etc. In other words why cause yourself suffering to the point where it causes insanity.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Bravo!

    • DeezNutz says:

      I’m in the same boat….in going on 28
      ..
      I first realized I wanted to die when I was may be 3 4 or 5 years old…all this time later….I’m the selfish one that needs to get help?….as I tell everyone that gets sad about a death “you couldn’t be so lucky”

    • RaIn says:

      Seriously Lewis.. When people say:” You just took the words out of my mouth ” Well. This is one of the those cases, This was spot on EXACTLY what i’m thinking about life. It was honestly a little bit scary to read, because it was just like my words that i’ve said to others for the last 2-3 years. The only part that differs is that i’ve thought that i have suffered from depression.

      But is it really depression?

      I have no desire in the world anymore, and i’m not interested in any job working from 8-5 everyday and come home to dinner. I’m not interested in socializing with people going on trips long away having “fun”. I don’t want any new experiences, because i simply do not enjoy it. It feels like i’m just an old soul who’s tired of life in general and just wants peace and nothing. And i’ve felt this way since i was 12-13 years old. Now i’m 24.

      The one thing that scares me though from exiting this game, is what i fear is gonna come after it. Like what the hell happens? That scares me a lot.

      I’m glad i read on this site and found you Lewis, it was such a relief that someone else share the same thoughts about life as i do.

      Therapists doesn’t understand me, or refuse to. They don’t wanna see the truth behind someone’s life. People can call you crazy for saying stuff like that, but you know what i think? I think it’s just more awareness. You are more aware then other people. You think a lot deeper, and you need something more. Doing this superficial things isn’t enough for you. You need something that gives you an emotion. Like music for example. That’s the only thing to me that gives me a real emotion and i actually can be happy,when i listen to it. Or if i watch a FANTASTIC movie. It’s sad that it has ended up like this, and i wish i could just enjoy life as my friends do. Without any worries and just have fun. But it’s not that easy for me. I’m on another level..

    • Brent F. says:

      It especially maddening for myself in the boredom department in that problems other people have that they bring on themselves I find no problem avoiding. Don’t have sex, don’t do recreational drugs, don’t get married, avoid working too hard….this is so trivially boring and predictable…it’s not a challenge…. If this was the biblical times my arm would be so tired throwing the first stone. Being a total vacuum of sin has it’s perks…but why is everyone else having so much trouble…Boooorring!

  172. abcd says:

    suicide is very personal and i think only the suicidal person’s opinion is valid. i think suicide should be legal (it is laughable that it is and had been illegal in so many places) and access to safe and humane suicide should be legal.

    • Tom Hal says:

      “suicide is very personal and i think only the suicidal person’s opinion is valid.”

      If our species survives ourselves, in the distant future humans will look back on this assertion as self-evident. It’s a profound commentary on how fallible we are that an entire professional discipline has evolved in direct opposition to this concept, and worse, has coerced the law to deprive us of the freedom to exit life–the same law that enables structures, like different classes of discrimination, refusal to uphold laws enacted to protect the elderly, the infirm, and the disempowered, legal representation far outside the reach of most in cost, financial depredation on the poor…, which make life so detestable for many who then seriously contemplate leaving life.

  173. john says:

    I believe that if a person’s life is truly miserable, physician-assisted suicide should be legal. There is no point in living if you’re just going to be miserable. Why take anti-depressants or painkillers because those are just a temporary solution to a possibly permanent problem?

    • Tom Hal says:

      “(Treatment is) a temporary solution to a (possibly) permanent problem.” Very nice way to turn a hackneyed, vacuous statement on its head. (“Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”) Just as treatment only sometimes works (and often doesn’t), life problems are sometimes permanent.

    • Brent F. says:

      These pharmaceutical companies do not create cures. They create CUSTOMERS. In a fire house somewhere there is a light bulb that has been burning since 1903 with almost a million hours on it. Making such a light bulb is no way to sell light bulbs. If they made a cure for being a child-killing maniac they would not be able to sell pills that fight the global warming of their mind with central air-conditioning. It’s the old spear and shield paradox. Humans have the ability to make their world wonderful and far more wealthy than it is now, however we choose the local optimum.

  174. Mrsomeone says:

    Fuck life, they say life is a gift but just look how damn miserable things are, wish i never come to this stupid world, been bullied by my father over years, been bullied by my familly as well, been bullied at school to the point i was damn afraid to go there, have no friends, have no girlfriend, no money, all alone, despite all i used to enjoy a lot of things like music, girls, going to church, learning new thing, computers, videogames etc… but dude, now im so messed up that i dont even give a heck about anything, even porn, and now i hear that bullshit that if you suicide you go to hell, what the hell, life is already a mess

    • Puck says:

      Makes one think about if God is really good and letting such things happen, the devil must be the good guy. Much as in the book 1984 where peace is war. Love is hate. Etc.

    • nunya says:

      I feel you, im all alone. no one to help me. grew up dirt poor, less than a thousand a month. dad died when i was two. no family. always getting screwed with. why bother. why suffer. ill have to break the law to get any real money then ill go to prison. whats the point.

  175. Anonymous says:

    When I finally get the courage to end it I don’t want to be stopped.

    • Puck says:

      This is one reason that one should not talk to any doctor about this. They will only be interested in stopping you, and have no interest in resolving the problems that make you feel that way in the first place.

      One such thing for me is Chronic Pain, and getting medication for it is insanely difficult.

      Why are doctors, and other heath care people along with law enforcement and many others more concerned about drug abuse, and possibility of addiction than people being so miserable in pain that death is more of a Godsend than just an end to ones life.

      Fact of the matter when a doctor says that they are worried about your safety, they are actually saying that they are more worried about possible legal action against them than your life or the lives of your family members left behind.

      Do not believe for one moment that your elected officials will do anything to solve this, as they are only interested in control

  176. Heather K says:

    NO, I do not. Life is hell. If you haven’t been in this person’s situation do not judge them. I am. I have demons, killing me slowly at their own will. I have two sons grown and living their own lives. My parents are gone. My siblings are either passed or have their own families they love and celebrate with. I have one “friend” who really has her own family and life to continue on I have my dog who is growing old having her own problems, seizures, strokes etc. When she is gone I am alone. I am miserable in life. I do not have a significant other. And My future does not look bright and hopeful.. When you have someone who feels like this, why would you deny them something who could bring them peace? Life is not happy. Life is hard, life is miserable, life is heartbreaking, life is painful!!! I have lived my life through my children who have been EVERYTHING to me!!! And now they are grown and living their lives. I am a burden to everyone who knows and knew me. I WiSH I had to courage to take my own life!! Why can’t I?? I pray and wish every damn day for someone to hit me head on, something that happens to others, don’t take them, take me!!! I want to go. I don’t want to stay in this hell that I live in. yes, others are worse off than me. I am struggling with depression, bipolar, anxiety! PLEASE, PLEASE take me! I wish, I beg, I pray that this will end! If those that are struggling with severe mental issues can’t get out, isn’t there some way to help them???? Medications only do so much!!! Therapy only does so much!!! PLEASE tell me, PLEASE I beg of someone to please get me out of this hell.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Thanks for sharing so honestly with the rest of us. I think a lot of people around the world feel as you do, but they’re frightened to be open about their feelings. You notice that most of those who forbid others to take their own lives and who block all attempts to legalize euthanasia (of humans) are also those who advocate self-reliance, taking care of yourself, in a world even they admit is extremely competitive. They won’t give people jobs who desperately need them. They won’t provide housing and other survival resources that quality-of-life is intrinsically linked to. And they are so busy with their own lives that they won’t be there to keep us company through the long, hard night. No, they tell us, instead, we have GOT to find ways to entertain ourselves, to care for ourselves–as if merely saying “got to” translates into viable ways to do so. You’d think that, so fed up with the incompetence of those who can’t or won’t adapt to the world the successfully acclimated have created, the anti-suicide pundits would be happy to be rid of the social burdens who will never conform or become what is expected of them.

    • Joan Of Arc says:

      I feel exactly the same as you, except for the fact that I have no human kids. I have a dog and a cat and they are my world. If anything were to happen to them that will be my ticket out of this fucked up vortex called life. I say the same things as you do. I wish I had a loving parent like you. I’m 30 years old and feel like this life was given to me as a torture mechanism. Everything consist of slaving from 9 to 5, pay bills, eat, pay more bills and stress about my upcoming doom. Reading what you’ve typed is hurting me in many ways. I feel like I’ve known you for years. I wish that I can let you know that you are needed and loved by so many including me. Know that you’ve done your best, you gave your kids an amazing foundation to build on, loving arms to run to when needed. I love you and I hear you.

    • Puck says:

      Have you ever thought of selling everything you can, dispose of the rest. Then move to another country?

  177. Dee says:

    I believe that assisted suicide is good in some cases. We live in a society that is fast paced and leaves little empathy for people that are living with daily excruciating pain. Pain medication helps but it also leaves one with a feeling of numbness. When you can no longer partake in life, all you do is stay in bed because you are too weak to get up. I believe it is a welcoming end to allow you to move on into a peaceful afterlife.

  178. KK says:

    I have been constantly making mistakes in school, work, and life for the past 34 years. I live in constant anguish, despair and severe mental pain. I nearly always feel as if my stomach is full of writhing snakes. No matter how hard I try I screw up in ways that often have a huge negative impact and look incredibly foolish. People ridicule then avoid me. I switch jobs every couple of years to escape. Many rounds of therapy, medication, education , meditation havent helped. I live 22 of 24 hours in misery.

    I have no friends. I don’t know how to make friends. People seem to forget me even after meeting me several times. I hate it.

    I attempted suicide in the summer of 1990 but didn’t pull the trigger. I thought that I would give myself another chance for things to get better. They didn’t. I now wish I put that .41 magnum bullet through my brain. I think about that multiple times every day.

    However, now I have kids and it is more complicated. As much as I am truly a loser I risk damaging them emotionally at their current ages.

    However, I reserve the right to end my terrible pain. When the youngest turns 19 I will do it. The revolver and rounds are patiently waiting for me.

    Depression is a disease. In my case, the cause is extreme screwing up. Diseases
    can be terminal. That is my situation. I hate being told that depression can always be cured. They don’t say that about cancer. Forcing people to suffer endlessly is the height of cruelty.

    We do have a choice and one of those choices is suicide.

    • Puck says:

      Have you thought about moving to another state that requires doctors to help those in pain so that suicide is not the only option available to you. It is very sad that people here in this country are helped none or very little. Then the problem only comes out when people die. Instead of doing the right thing and helping before that is the only way out of the problem. There are many ways that someone could do such, but the question should be what and how you want to be remembered. Christ basically committed suicide by allowing himself to be taken for the sake of his followers. We all hurt sometimes physically other times mentally and both. However those that are usually said to be sane are the ones best able to hide their pain. This is something that all should keep in mind.

    • MB says:

      I wish I could make you feel better KK. I believe people should be able to choose plus get support in that. I hope that things do change for you, you seem really sweet and people should be more supportive of you. I hope life becomes great soon and you make good friends too. Not to prevent suicide but to make you feel better.

  179. Puck says:

    First of all I love myself and do not like the way that I am treated by overall society and by government control. Suicide would be one of the most powerful ways that I could take control of my life, that has been taken from me through oppression and suffering that could have easily been prevented. I have spinal problems that cause me great pain, difficulty with balance, and ability to walk. I have not been able to run in years. I could have been helped years ago by forcing medical providers to perform surgery for my back problems due to stenosis and frontal sinus pain as well. However medication was the route chosen for me because it is less expensive. Then years later have the medications that I now am dependant on as a result of that path that was chosen for me to be regulated to the point that now getting the medications that I am dependant on through no action of my own doing to be made more and more difficult to obtain and more expensive out of my pocket as well. Suicide is the only option that I can afford at this point for things that could have been medically solved years ago when I had good insurance compaired to no insurance now thanks to ACA and our government.

  180. Dad says:

    Suicide – The only mistake you will ever make that’s permanent!

    • Chad N. says:

      I think it’s great that you feel that way. I’m jealous in fact because I don’t feel that way at all. I want an end. I know more could come and that I may be able to eventually fool myself into thinking I’m happy with the completely different life than what I actually want. The issue is I just don’t want to. I am by no means going to try to force you to want what I want so please don’t try to force me to want what you want. Mutual respect, that’s all we’re asking for. You go enjoy your life ending slowly as you want and we go enjoy it ending quickly…. either way we’re both choosing our own way for it to end.

    • Tom Hal says:

      The assertion that suicide is a mistake is, and I do not mean to attack anyone, absurd. First, taken literally it’s illogical. By definition suicide is intentional, not a mistake, excepting scenarios in which somebody tries to stage a suicide but accidentally kills her-/himself. Taken as a broader claim about what one ought to do, the assertion is insulting and presumptuous. Elsewhere, others have already argued that life can be unbearable DESPITE therapy and drugs and faithfully following the counsel of so-called expert-after-expert. But more importantly, just as it’s no one else’s place to declare that someone who chooses divorce, or dropping out of medical school, or countless other major life events is making “a mistake,” despite the substantial consequences of those choices, it’s also no one else’s place to decide that an adult’s choice to leave life is “a mistake.”

      Just because modern psychology declares suicide is usually the consequence of some kind of mental problem doesn’t make that statement true beyond the obvious–that those who choose to leave life must very much dislike their experiences of life. Duh. If I am wrong, please share the empirical evidence–including the cause-effect biomolecular model of pathology, not mere statistical associations among psychosocial variables.

      If YOU do not want to commit suicide, then don’t commit suicide. Otherwise, I suggest it’s a more effective intervention to lower suicide rates by working on making the world the kind of place people want to stay alive in.

  181. Cavepool says:

    I love what the comedian Maria Bamford says about suicide: “If you stay alive for no other reason, please do it for spite.” Damn right. That said, it’s a personal choice and no one else’s business.

  182. Angel says:

    Desperate attempts to keep those who wish to leave is very arrogant and bigoted. Death, in my opinion, is not the end. But it is a new beginning. Whether we die and go to heaven/hell, whether we die and NOTHING happens just lights out, or whether we are incarnate/reincarnated into another life or form of life, death is an illusion and is not “permanent”. You will, no matter your beliefs, enter another life where your soul/plana/chi/etheric body or consciousness, will continue. I know this to be fact, but because we live in such a left brained fear based society, I cannot claim this indefinitely per my own experience. That is for you to decide. Death is a human construct that is a derivative of our fear of the unknown. Us, as humans, fear that which we do not understand. But if you delve into your “SELF” and ask yourself the right questions, the fear will subside as the right answers come. Nothing is new under the sun, and no matter is created in this universe, yet is only redistributed, since the mass of the universe(s) remain finite. Don’t fear death, welcome it as it is inevitable for ALL of us in this form. BUT, understand that if you do resort to suicide, much like Tylenol, it’s only a temporary solution to a temporary problem. And you’ll find yourself, aware of it or not, fighting the same battles in your next life/stage, of your life.

    Do not for one second think that your problems will go away, because that is a common misconception. Trust me, someone who struggles with manic depression, I know the struggle all too well. But it won’t fix anything. You’ll instead be denying yourself the opportunity of fixing this issue NOW by prolonging it, to be fixed in another present moment.

    I won’t tell you, or myself, to “NOT KILL YOURSELF”, but I will say that YOU DO MATTER!

    I know this all too well, and wish that someone said this to me, but it isn’t the case. And I know that sometimes all we want is to hear that from family or those we care about, but know that we are all family. That we are all in this together. That this TOO SHALL PASS. It is only the beginning. Not the end. So make your choice based on your own free will, and understanding of what is to come. Two choices are only available to those who are contemplating these measures: 1) Kill yourself and deal with your residual energy (emotion – energy in motion) or 2) refrain from doing so, and get the help and support that you need, in this life.

    Whatever you choose, peace be with you. Namaste. And I LOVE YOU!

    We never truly die, we simply transform and evolve. However you wish to understand this passage is your choice. Know it to be truth.

  183. Grumpy says:

    I think there should be always the choice to die. Even if you are content with life and still want to leave. i always want to die. Just do not want to be part of this system. You work to live . I do not want to. Nobody gave me any choice if i wanted to be born. I see what people do to this planet and i just don’t want to be part of that. Even if you try to be better the system requires you be part. You need to eat. Need to work .need transport yourself. Need heat at home. Multiple times per day i wish i would die that night. I don’t want be part of any relationship. I do not want to be here. Not this planet. Not this time. Not this universe.

  184. Patricia says:

    I think people should be able to kill themselves if they can’t deal with life anymore. I am sick of other people and laws intervening. It should be an individual choice.

  185. Anonymous says:

    I love how therapist and the like will tell you that your feelings don’t have to be justified by others and then turn around and tell you your desire to end your suffering is unjustified because they don’t agree with it. Yes if you live longer you may find something to make you smile but whether one smile is worth a lifetime of pain is a personal decision. I could see an argument on society getting to weigh in only if it would be a risk to the continuation of society. As in when mankind was recovering from the Black Plague. We’re 7 billion strong now, so stop oppressing free will.

    • HollowLife says:

      ////Anonymous October 9, 2016 at 1:18 pm.//// >>> I agree with you completely, and this is the sad situation, that if life is without any problem, societies will create one just so they can help you even though you don’t need any help. This is the artificial intelligence and the great fall. LIES LIES LIES.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thank you for the agreement. I like to think society just hasn’t figured out that there’s no problem here to fix. I wish they realized that the best thing is to ask the person if there’s anything that could be done to make life better and if the answer is no ask if there’s anything that can be done to make dying better. It bothers me as well that people try to negate the desire of those suffering but not immediately dying to prevent further suffering. Suffering is suffering and having to endure it longer shouldn’t make it ok.

    • Tom Hal says:

      I just read your line, Anonymous: “the best thing is to ask the person if there’s anything that could be done to make life better and if the answer is no ask if there’s anything that can be done to make dying better.” That is the most humane and lucid proposal I’ve read anywhere.

      I think if humans survive another century without having so demolished the ecosystem, and one another, that we can continue to afford to give philosophy much thought, it will seem obvious that it is inherently wrong–for the state, physicians, and any therapist (especially so-called therapists)–to force another human being who has decided she doesn’t want life to remain alive. This is only compounded by the obvious: that the state cannot afford to provide for the obligatory survival of such people. So, having been commanded to stay alive but having no will to live, we are then relegated to the growing pile of humans for whom there are precious few means to physically survive (all with the cost of ever mounting competition) and who then … die of deprivation. Charming. We can’t leave life unless it’s slow and tortured because we can’t afford life.

      I suppose its morally easier to let people linger and die, financially destitute and utterly abandoned by support networks research keeps telling us are vital, since you can then claim they were guilty of the great sin of not-enough-effort, than to allow them access to quick, clean, painless euthanasia.

    • Anonymous says:

      Completely. But I mean completely.

  186. Stuart says:

    When trying to prevent someone from committing suicide it’s like trying to convince them to continue suffering the pain and depression they’re going through. If someone wants to end it then it is unacceptable to make them continue through the life of hell they are in. Not to mention that whether or not they commit it’s not like it would make any difference compared to them dying later in life. In other words, if someone commits suicide then all they are doing is choosing not to continue going through the pain in their life instead of suffering it through the rest of their life to the time that they die in their future life. I mean it’s not like if they don’t commit suicide then they’re going to live forever compared to the way most people act, but even if they did all it would be is a constant life of suffering the pain and depression. It is unnecessary to stop someone from committing suicide. If they do decide to, it is their choice. Let them decide and choose whether or not to stop or continue on in life.

    • Tom Hal says:

      I wish we could applaud audibly in comment sections. 🙂

    • Anonymous says:

      Agree 100%. I would even add that painless suicide medication ought to be available over the counter. Nobody so far has been able to give me one good reason why not.

    • Cara says:

      Well said.

      Camus argued that suicide is what happens when someone decides that life is not worth the struggle….. Fleeing one’s suffering, in my view, is a rational strategy in the game of life. Sure, we can construct some sort of aesthetic to suffering, that Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Camus and others all tried to do in their own way. But I see this as a coping mechanism, nothing more. If life is so bad as to warrant not having children, then it should also not be worth living.

      In any case, it’s hard to see how Schopenhauer’s asceticism isn’t ALSO a form of fleeing life’s suffering. I do have sympathies, though, for theories that advocate the continuation of life in order to maximize one’s utility. Von Hartmann was one thinker who advocated this.

      In general, though, I have to agree with Sartre and Tolstoy: people continue out of ignorance or weakness. It is the strong who manage to kill themselves.

  187. Broken spirit sweetie says:

    Absolutely not. A grown adult is capable of making their own decisions. We have to live with our own pain locked in our soul and body.

    I remember looking at a doctor after trying to commit suicide and he smirked and told me I was a threat to society…and I ask really, how? ? I don’t even eat animals, or kill bugs+ I would give my last dollar to anyone that needed it.. I only try to do good and would never hurt anyone besides myself. Why should you force someone to suffer and he just threw the papers down and jumped up.

    • Joan Of Arc says:

      Just out of curiousity, what was the doc/asswhole’s response when you asked him how you’re a threat to society?

  188. chris says:

    i have already died once. i feel if i want to go back, i should be allowed to, even helped in getting there. suicide prevention has gone too far.

  189. April says:

    Suicides should not be prevented. A conviction is just that, a conviction. Why waste time trying to stop someone when they felt it was necessary for them?

  190. Logic101 says:

    This article is a piece of shit. At the moment, I am doing what I love, feeling good and looking forward to going to a mates place in about an hour. Do I still want to die? Yep. I have no future, and I have known it for 12 years. I hate who I am and, through 100 attempts, I have not been able to improve it. I know I’ll feel shit again eventually. I go to bed thinking “wouldn’t it be nice never to wake up again”. My suicidal desire is not irrational. I have weighed up the pros and cons, and I know that sooner or later I’ll end up feeling miserable all the time with nothing to live for–probably once my folks die and I have no one left who loves me. I realise that sounds stupid since I am going to a mate’s house, but this is a mate who invites 199 friends and never really cares if I show up or not, so it’s just for numbers, but I enjoy it so I’ll go. But yeah, I still want to die. I hate articles like these because it takes that decision out of my hands; so some people are irrational, what of it? Should the logical people suffer because of the emotional people?

    • HollowLife says:

      The whole of existence is an existential business and we are nothing but a species to contribute our fees and dues to higher forces who have so conditioned life mostly for their own purpose and amusement that also keeping us in bondage through religion and biochemical conditioning… The ones that would like to be set free must find ways to be released from this matrix. I am contemplating over my death/suicide and I would like to speak for myself as I have come to realize and somehow penetrated through this game/manipulation. If mankind reaches the point to voluntarily commit suicide then the higher powers and the powers of the world will be threatened from their higher positions that is why the church prevents birth control and also suicide, We are just business and money for those in power. The question is how to extinguish oneself so completely by seeing the facts that life and the entire existence is too boring and full of headaches. By force we arrive to this world, by force we live, and by force through deterioration we also die… and/or to be forced even further after death. I must enquire deeply until I come to the point to be fed up and not want any more life but complete EXTINCTION. ((((((0)))))) Here’s a quote on Buddha’s enlightenment:>>>>///”There is, monks, a realm where there is neither earth, nor water, nor fire, nor wind… neither this world nor the next, neither sun nor moon. There, monks, I say there is neither coming, nor going, nor remaining; neither deceasing nor being born. Without foundation is it, without continuity, without support: this is the end of suffering” (Udana).///

  191. masteroftimeuk says:

    life is not fair, the saying is you reap what you sow, but in my case, it i choose to live my own life and god had his plan, so what am i meant to be a robot? if you do something in life and it was good then why are people being abused, by god, because he break his own word, i’ve never thought of suicide, until god wanted to test me, now i feel like committing suicide thanks god, your own selfishness let you down because you must play god with everyone’s life

  192. Anonymous says:

    I’m just really tired of having to push through adversity. I’m not a victim and I am aware that there are people who have seemingly more difficult lives than I do but it’s all relative.

    Needs are highly influenced by environment and in my environment, I barely get by. Constant management of scarcity is the theme.

    It sucks to live like this: worrying, trying, worrying yet managing to try some more to improve my life but not able to. Call it failure or not, makes no difference. This cycle is demoralizing and I fight each day to figure out what the F I am doing here.

    I don’t really care why things are difficult for me anymore. I don’t care what other people think. I just don’t want to feel like this anymore.

    If the pattern I live in were in a different context, people would readily advise to stop it and do something else. They would even support you ending whatever it is. Like that common definition of crazy, doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

    So I’m not obsessed with trying to kill myself but I just want to stop living. I want to stop the pain and internal struggle of each day. Dying seems pretty rational when I consider it this way.

    • Anonymous says:

      Beautifully put. I see death as a relief from the struggle and internal hate. I wake each day wondering how in the heck did I make it this far. I’m not physically, mentally nor I’m I financially built for this world. Some days are good, but the thought of death is constantly present. I pity those who look down on people who contemplate suicide, because suicide ( the thought or the action) is a scary thing. I mean none of us know what’s after death, I silently grieve for all my good brothers and sisters who feel hopeless and tired right now.

  193. Anonymous says:

    You know how to actually help? We need support. Real support. We need to set up networks and safety for people who are suicidal. Do you know why I feel suicidal? I don’t have anyone, and I can’t trust anyone. The people I care about can’t handle my emotions and suicidal thoughts, so I CAN’T talk about it. I can’t afford therapy, so I can’t talk about it. We need to destigmatize. We need to actually offer support for the suicidal instead of treating it like a private thing to shove in the closet and only talk about with a shrink. Rationalizing and saying all the stuff that anyone who’s suicidal already knows- it doesn’t help. Helping helps. Direct action helps. If you wanna support someone, do it. Don’t make them feel worse than nothing.

  194. Hybert says:

    I agree with most of the comments. It’s really stupid how wanting to die is taboo, and shamed. Why do the folks who feel this way turn into pariahs? It has to change. People who feel suicidal aren’t stupid, they know how stop the suffering.

  195. vivi says:

    I want to die,sometimes,just because Im so tired. But okay. I won’t say it. It’s just an idea comin from my head several times. I was victim of violence who is smart. I saw so many people gossiped and talked bad things of me which are not true until now. Im not perfect child just like my late younger brother. I want to end my life because of depressed of hurtful words of my mother. I want to run away out of home. Escape. Im so tired.

  196. Unknown says:

    I agree with pretty much everyone on here. I don’t mean to sound like a heartless bitch but a person should be allowed to control his or her own death, seeing as none of us have control over our lives. They say we do, but we don’t. I don’t particularly have a bad life, but I’ve always been a good person with a big heart and yet somehow I’m always the one getting hurt in the end. I want to die for myself but I want to live for the ones I love, because I know they would be devastated if anything happened to me. Some days I actually do feel glad to be alive. But for the most part, I find myself constantly battling depression and I fear that one day I’m going to give up and lose altogether.

    • \ says:

      I agree that it is your life but others would be hurt. Life sucks.

    • Tom Hal says:

      You don’t sound at all like a “heartless bitch.” You sound like a rational, realistic person who understands her own life better than anyone else can understand the same life. And these assertions of your, in particular, strike me as fundamentally true: “…seeing as none of us have control over our lives. They say we do, but we don’t.”

      I agree–despite the philosophical mumbo-jumbo about autonomy, and the moralistic ephemera about personal responsibility, not to mention the deeply culturally embedded fallacy of meritocracy–we’re not in control of our lives. Our decisions are constrained by countless variables we have no control over. And whether traditional religion or the modern religion of mental health, we’re told some responses to stimuli are good and others are bad, that we suffer because we keep choosing the “bad responses.” The therapy is, of course, re-educating us to choose what others deem “good responses” to the painful stimuli of life. Most of us react to circumstances, make choices we hope will work out. Very often we’re wrong, and for some of us those wrong choices, as for most other animals in nature, can eventually be catastrophic and irremediable.

      The one piece of peace we could offer the suffering masses, among whom I certainly number, is the freedom to choose to leave this game of life with expert medical intervention that would quickly and painlessly bring an end to our suffering.

  197. Cheerful on the outside says:

    Even when everything is good on the outside (good job, happy family, etc), a part of me feels hollow. I keep thinking I should be grateful for what I have and that this is enough. I have had a dream for a long time and I am afraid to pursue it because I will have to move away from my family to another country. As I live my day-to-day, I noticed I have grown numb. I follow through the motions and react accordingly to what’s expected. I have not told anyone of my feelings because they are too busy venting their own problems to me. I do not want to hear it now. I want to tell some of them that their problems will not go away because they are NOT taking responsibility for their actions. It can’t ALWAYS be someone else’s fault for every problem they encounter. And I do not want to hang out with these kinds of people even if it’s family. I feel like they will not understand until they lose it all to realize the value of what they already had. Sorry for the ramble, but it occasionally drives me sad to the point where I have bad thoughts and consider numbing the pain forever.

  198. Anonymous says:

    I don’t think suicide should be prevented in the adult population.

  199. Sean says:

    People want to stop others from suicide because of the empowerment they feel and excitement they get from saving a life. Also, people love being right. They will tell you that if you kill yourself you will go to Hell. If they can convince you of this not only will they have saved your life, they will have “saved your soul”.

    • Anonymous says:

      Well to bad for them. I’m Atheist. Plus. I’ve had people prevent my suicide and they were sad. So ya know. Have experience before you presume. I’ve tried. Multiple times.

  200. G says:

    Ive been so depressed. I want to die, I don’t want to die. But nobody actually helps. WTF kind of article is this? Nobody actually understands unless they’re in the same f*cking boat! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told I’m being dramatic and others have it worse- nobody wants to help!

    • Anonymous says:

      I do

    • Samantha says:

      I think one of the worst things anyone can say to a depressed person is “others have it worse.” They’re not hearing you, they’re invalidating your feelings, it’s a dismissive tactic. I’ve battled depression since 14 yrs. old, my ignorant father used to say that & it shut me up but I was also left feeling I didn’t matter. So next time someone says that, you tell them they are invalidating your feelings as if you don’t matter. There’s no comeback for that!

    • Tom Hal says:

      I agree with you. What’s most damaging about “professionals” in so-called mental health is that these human beings OUTSIDE the experience of your mind get to tell you how you ought to feel, and worse, get to force you to act a certain way concerning JUST your life and body. None of this is guaranteed to help, and if it doesn’t help, you’re now obliged to continue suffering, hurting. Until when? Decades of torment as new-“treatment”-after-new-promising-“treatment” fail?

      It’s as if the “professionals” write for themselves and others who feel and think as they do. But the rest of us are labeled wrong and defective because we feel and think differently. And there’s no discussing these matters with them. They actually believe, just like the dictatorial religious in centuries past, that they’re justified in deciding FOR you both how you (should) feel and what you should do with your own flesh. It boggles my mind that a culture as “intellectually advanced” as ours supports this. In the meantime, those of us actually LIVING our lives continue to come to our conclusions, regardless the official (but separate from us) pronouncements of mental health boards, and, silently, make our plans, and carry them out.

      The only thing gained by commanding people who want to leave life to stay here, besides our continued suffering, is gruesome endings due to the determined among us desperately seeking out uncertain and even painful ends.

      In the distant future, should humanity survive, people will look back on this age of the religion of mental health as a dark smear against both empiricism and personal freedoms–especially in the context of inescapable suffering. Imagine telling people we have to accept the horrors of lives we never chose–chronic under- or unemployment; explosive college tuitions; crushing “good” debt with no conceivable way to escape it in our lifetimes; fragmented families; chronic loneliness; ubiquitous judgments (too tall/too short/too fat/too skinny/too…) that dehumanize, isolate, and legally (thanks Supreme Court) justify employment, and hence survival, discrimination; and a government–and local authorities–that the globe’s best scholars demonstrate don’t care what the masses want. Add to this unremitting pain from injuries or illness, ever mounting costs-of-living with no way to pay the increasing costs on a life you don’t even want in the first place, and a myriad moment-by-moment vexations (like barking dogs you have no control over, or daily bullying, or…), and it’s PHENOMENAL another human being would presume to command us to subscribe to the doctrine of life-is-good. Simply phenomenal.

  201. Due to the nature of the subject and that of many of those who have found there way here, this post will go largely unread……but for the benefit of those who might read it….
    I have been following these comments for quite a long time now and too much of it is from people telling tales of how bad things are for them rather that keeping focused the actual reasons why what we now call suicide, should be legal and accessible.
    Stories of woe make a person seem as though they are of the victim mentalitity, are out of their mind and are not rational at all.
    This plays the ball very nicely in to the court of the “mental health professionals” who immediately use this lack of composure to back up their backward outlook and fighting very hard to keep our right of life away from us.
    This in no way helps the cause and gives undue credibility to those who believe that suicide is never a rational choice.
    Let me put it this way, if i go to the chemist screaming for codeine because my head is killing me, they will look at me like i am a crazed drug user and they wont give me anything except a security escort to the door.
    However, if i go in calmly describing my headache symptoms, they will most probably say, hey, you really need this product here that has these active ingredients.
    We will get no where if we appear as crazy as the rest of the world seems to want to believe we are.
    So, please dont come here with ” i am xx years old and have been abused since i was xx and no one loves me so i should be allowed to die etc etc etc”.
    Let me say that the vast majority of people leaving comments here also have real and shocking stories but they do not even need to come in to it or be posted here.
    If we are ever going to be given our rights, we must do our very best to display to the world that we are in fact rational, sane and have given this serious and delicate subject immense thought and consideration.

    • Orangeoctopus says:

      I agree – however people aren’t educated to a high enough degree to understand this. Thats all part of the twisted system. Well done for explaining it. We must show that we are rational – that we have thought about this for years – without doing it because we are rational enough to know – let me put it like this, a guy in a bi polar depression jumped in front of a truck and messed himself up in a terrible state – thankfully when he survived he could still walk – he probably scared the truck driver for life – let alone the ambulance (many paramedics I speak to are traumatised after they leave their jobs)

      This guy was not rational. He was happy one minute and sad the next – he had a psychosis. This raises the question of whether he should have been allowed – what do you think? Clearly he would have died if access had been easy – and he would have saved all that suffering and cost to others but could we consider him rational?

      Perhaps what we also need to do is look for and be each other advocates. Also in countries where they are Euthanising for mental health reasons you still need to see therapists for 3 years and plenty of sessions before its considered. I don’t think that is a bad thing – at the end of the day – if there are people that love you but can’t help you (such as myself) I would like to be able to say good bye to them – they MUST be considered important (the people who want you to live – family- partners-friends) because otherwise they will protest – its like keeping the enemy close and letting them think they re in control.

      My family would be horrified if I ended my life – and if it was done legally they would probably protest against it and start a whole movement to stop it as they can not conceive that life just simply isn’t worth it.

      These people “controllers” worry me – like the pro lifers etc – How they are doing it in the Netherlands should be commended and be our example. I know the UK with the Royal family and the religion will never allow this. I just hope to save up enough money so I can go as more and more places open up abroad. Good luck everyone.

  202. Ash R says:

    I don’t know what ‘illness’ I have. But I’m 25, and since 16 I’ve felt really alone, shattered and miserable. There is an immense pain that I go through on a daily basis which nobody understands. I don’t know why I haven’t committed suicide yet but I know that the time to do it is getting closer and closer. I’ve just had enough of people who pretend to understand what I’m going through when they don’t. Therapists, Psychologists, Psychiatrists etc have no idea- they live happy lives, they have qualifications to tell us broken people how we should ‘cope with our feelings’ but they know nothing about our anguish- they don’t truly understand and they will never be able to.

  203. Cat says:

    To some ending the suffering is not negative. But a direct course to solve an imbalance. To die is not horrific. Its taking the next journey that is waiting. I look forward to the powers that compel me to continue and give myself to the inevitability. I dont so much want to die as to be dead. I am not afraid and wait with happiness for my turn.

  204. Carter Fox says:

    No way in hell should suicide be prevented…

  205. Bill says:

    sydchic I hear you. This is not our planet anyway. I give up. I tried, believe me, but people like us are not welcome here. Somehow though, I want to stay around, to see how much I can torture these oppressors of humanity. Drop me a line.

    • Tom Hal says:

      One of my favorite comments anywhere (thank you): “This is not our planet anyway. I give up. I tried…but people like us are not welcome here.”

  206. MOSU GOJI says:

    I always find it hilarious when some clown babbles that a suicidal person needs to get “help”. It never occurs to these know-it-alls that perhaps the suicidal person has or is receiving “help”. There are countless instances of suicidal people that are on meds and currently receiving counseling and have been in long term counseling yet it’s not “helping”. What then? Do you get “Help-Help”? It’s also true that some mass killings have been perpetrated by people that have tried suicide and had received the magical cure-all “help”. So if someone hadn’t stuck their nose in and allowed that person to kill themselves a mass killing could have been averted. Psychology is an inexact “science” at best and as for meds ask any doctor they aren’t exactly sure why some of the meds work or what other effects may manifest. And psychiatrists themselves commit suicide so that is very telling in how effective this magical “help” is. Feeling suicidal does not have a one size fits all treatment. Sigmund Freud himself died by physician assisted suicide. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fighting-fear/201309/are-psychiatrists-more-prone-suicide-pediatricians

    • Tom Hal says:

      Psychology is NOT a natural science, regardless how fervently psychologists argue otherwise. True, cognitive sciences are legitimate sciences, but this is not largely what professional psychologists practice–especially when they impose their value judgments on actions.

  207. Destiny says:

    What if you’ve tried everything and still want to die?! Then should suicide be prevented!?

  208. HollowLife says:

    The first cause of misery is life itself. The second cause of miseries are the religious men that insists in knowing god to have so much love for mankind and that god shows his mercies through sufferings alone and that we should not think of suicide but to endure until god is done with his experiment and finely when hi’s done he can then dump us ruthlessly and be satisfied to that. The only thing, as advised by the priest, we should go to church to donate and pray so god can have mercy on our souls, while this dog/face deity never shows his presence to the world but stays hidden and only sends mercies by prayer alone but his mercies are filled with many sorrows. We are nothing but an experiment that is being done to us by higher beings which they call themselves gods and we are nothing more than puppets for their game, that’s why they don’t want us to use our will and decide for ourselves whether to live with these conditions or to put an end to our lives. If for instance, people use their will and decide to take their own lives, what will be of the world and their gods? surely they will be left high and dry and will be holding on to their own dikks and buttocks cheeks. You see, it was not up to us to be born but now it should be our own decision to die and with dignity at that and not suffer because the experiment went wrong or it was meant to for their own amusement and purpose. There should be 100% our choice to die and neither man nor gods can have any saying over our death. Furthermore: there is nothing that belong to us or to anybody in this world, it’s only a manipulation which gods are playing through our senses and we are only their breeding stock as their game and species for their own amusement and also their sport and food. Once this realization awakens in our minds then death will be the greatest release from being slaves of the gods within this mess of conditions of suffering and optical illusions. Why the world doesn’t permit euthanasia? Because our suffering means business to gods and the world. You know something is very wrong, and the “official” story
    is always a lie.
    But Who is Really In Charge Of Mankind? What are Their Goals?
    What is the real cause of all the Wars, and
    Evil Throughout Man’s History?

  209. Anonymous says:

    i want honest friends who know how sick it is to live with those who make domestic violence an option

  210. lisa says:

    I have tried to kill myself many time’s but have a very high tolerance to medication half my family have woke up in the middle of opperations they could tell the surgeons what was said at 9 I saw my Doctor who was about to operate on me next covered in blood because they could not knock me out,in 2009 My Surgeon had to block my view so I would not see someone being operated on the Doctor who was to knock me out kept saying how sorry he was to my Surgeon, then last yr I did stop breathing after being allergic to the anaesthetic & was brought back to life even tho I told the Doctor if anything went wrong fax my Doctor for a copy of my ADVANCED HEALTH CARE DIRECTIVE BUT THE Lawers had kept the orignal and it says you have to have the original at all times or the Doctor does not have to abide by the document, I have suffered chronic pain most my life I have a club foot smaller by 4 sizes I fell and twisted it last week,I never sleep now did get 3hrs sleep on sleeping aids but not now! I had a gallstone attack last night along with a Ulcerated OESAPHAGUS attack combined with a migraine that had me throwing up water my hips,knees,hands & Neck all have Arthritis, so do I think I have the right to end MY LIFE,the answer is yes I am tired of pain this is not living it is just being,I have no hope,I dont laugh I can not even take my poor little dog for a walk anymore to top it off I was in a major hit and run accident so could not prove to insurance company thats what happened so in pain from that too.MY Nana and Uncle died 24hrs apart in 2009 7yrs ago this month apart from my Mum they were my World and my late Pop,my cousin died 2010 3 days after turning 47 my Uncle was 56,I am allergic to so much that I am bloated or have red rash or both ever since a dentist put a synthetic bone graft into an infected gum with out my permission, I told him to wait for the post then I got very sick went back to him he said it was not the graft or the temporary denture but it turns out I am allergic to acrylic, silver,gold and so on.So I think we all have the right to say when enough is enough it is not an easy choice I worry about my dog and Cat my mum and other family members but I am so tired of lying in pain

    • sydchic says:

      Hey Girl,I’m so sorry you are suffering.Please do not take my advice as gospel. I’ve no idea how old you are, if you are young I can tell you many go through these things ( different ways and degrees of pain) and intolerable pain in their lives, eventually they find they had strengths they could never of imagined.
      I can say you will look back at your life one day and wish another persons story of pain would believe that so much good stuff is ahead of them and you may not forget, but be kinda proud and content with who it has made you.

      I’m old.I’m 45 yrs and female and do not have this to look forward to due intentional harm that I will never have protection from.It has caused me much suffering too,for me I have little choice,but you do!

      Please know their are people that care,perhaps you haven’t even meet them yet! Physical pain is shocking to live with,I hope you find people to support you through it.

      You are precious and I would be so upset if i heard you did any harm to yourself,I’m just a stranger and you sound so awesome. xx

    • lisa says:

      Hi Sydchic thankyou for taking the the time to reply and be so very kind ,I was having I feel bad for myself day that nite,with lack of sleep And the Pain from the fall and I twisted my bad foot,I dont always be such a wet blanket The only time,s ive tried to take my life was when I was on anti depressants which always has the opposite effect on me as normally i am a happy-go-lucky human,the pain on very bad days gets to me,but I have the best Doctor and every one who works at the practice, chemist & where they take so much care of you,I find myself blessed from the people who take your blood for test,to the Secretary ” at the Doctors ofice I have the best Doctor she never rushes and is kind and compassionate, as are the staff at the chemist I have only lived in this town sice 2013 but will never move after receiving such wonderful care and the hospital like most hospital ” is over worked under paid give 190% they are wonderful and kind they worked so hard to bring me back to life the care was amazing so I do have to stop being selfish n wanting to go be with my Nana I am needed hear so I will stay and get gall stones out,Thankyou so much for reading my griping I remind myself everyday that I can see,walk and hear.

  211. Catherine says:

    Each of us is an individual. As someone who has tried unsuccessfully twice to kill themselves, I have chosen to not try anymore. Not because life has gotten better, but because both attempts left me with physical problems that make life harder. I know that God did not want me to die, and that I cannot live with any more problems.
    This however, has never removed either the emotional pain that resurrects itself on a regular basis or the daily difficulties that I live. So I live with the constant daily desire to simply end this life. After 35 years of this, I would love a foolproof way out. I am simply not prepared to make what I have to face worse. I would truly love an option other than constant unending pain.

    • HollowLife says:

      I cannot agree that god does not want someone to die, I think it’s the individual self that has not reached to the final decision and still hankers around for a solution to the problem of life. Death will not happen unless someone has completely died to self, world, and others – to the point where nothing can hold you back – you must break all identifications with body and the world – you discard all knowledge and self appearance – you summarize the entire world as an illusion – you cut the silver cord of communication – you reduce personality to “0” – you encounter the unknown – and you remain as the unknowable… But mind has to be completely extinguished on the path for any one to reach the final liberation and get out of the MATRIX.

  212. Dolores says:

    I want to die….. I wish there was something like an exit button where you could just poof disappear instead of most messy suicide methods…. I am almost 40 and my life has been torture ever since I can remember….. I have borderline personality disorder and I know I will never live like everyone else..form relationships like everyone else. …I am tired….. Exhausted….I don’t care how many people tell me how great I am they don’t know what’s its like to live with constant anxiety, depression, self doubt, low self esteem…. I have tried almost every anti depressant, anti psychotic and everything in between….I even tried electroconvulsive therapy…..nothing works…the only reason I am still here is my family….I don’t want this to destroy their lives but I don’t know how much more I can take……

    • Ted N says:

      I feel exactly like you.

    • Teena says:

      I do know what it is like to struggle everyday with depression/anxiety and loneliness.Sometimes I get a breather and pray my sadness stays far from me.I believe it has something to do with self love and valuing yourself.No matter what our story is or what we have experienced in our life since birth.Looking for someone to love us and value us.We will never find it outside of ourselves.Others are living on a different frequency a bit like a radio station.We connect with some who are on our energy frequency.I have found for myself that, that only happens now and then when they pop up in our lives unexpectedly.Hence feeling alone.We are all alone and if people choose not to connect with us,that’s bad luck..Why do we need others approval.Humans keep longing and searching for this.When you discover in yourself you are the observer looking out ward into the world,you can find what your longing for.Love and acceptance from yourself.When we notice other people with lots of people around them in their lives.People with lots of facebook friends.It is an illusion really if you look deeper.They are there in good times and bad times but only until it wears thin.They run a mile on their friend if the troubled time gets too heavy or long.It’s part of human nature (survival).Yes they say we are social creatures and it is healthy for us to connect with others,so we can learn and grow.If they choose to reject us that is their loss remember.There is something wrong with them not you.That little nagging negative voice inside us keeps telling us,there must be something wrong with me.Start telling that little nagging voice to shut the f…. up and create a new positive voice in your head.Your journey is yours and you are meant to be here as the person you know and love.We never die we continue on and on.May as well see it through and have a few laughs at everyone trying to work it out.You’re not on your own.I would rather be on my own than have false friends or family.Stay strong and give yourself your own Christmas gift.I do and I always love what i get under my tree.

  213. Anonymous says:

    I have wished God would take me because of severe depression. Sometimes I wish doctors would find a terminal illness because it would be an end to constant highs and major lows of mood disorder. I have felt mad at God for allowing depression to continue with no end in sight.

  214. Jacqueline Sweeney says:

    I hope no one on here will take your life!! I know how painful it can be because I been there. Depressed and so many health problems but I am still here because of the grace of God. He took away my depression although I’m still suffering with pain. It’s not that bad now because He reminds me of the “Comforter” He has placed on the inside of me, He takes care of me! I have joy in the place of depression. I embrace peace in my pain!! I know some of you don’t believe in Him but that’s your choice. I’m just telling you what He has done for me. I was a mess until I fell on my knees and asked Him to please take this pain from depression away! I couldn’t handle it anymore. I was suicidal but chose to go to Him instead! He removed the mental pain that years of going to mental doctors and being on meds.couldn’t. It’s not about me now but I live my life for Him and I feel so much better mentally even though I hurt physically at times!! He helps bare my pain and I go on with a smile knowing one day I will be totally at rest when He decides:)

    • anonymous says:

      God is the one i blame for the problems i have, he made me with brain chemistry so screwed up i can’t control my emotions or properly socialize with others. Screw that guy…

    • Barbara says:

      I have prayed many many times for God to take away my depression and the horrible pain issues I have because of fibromyalgia and arthritis. For years I have prayed for this and healing still hasn’t happened. Life in bed or sitting in recliner is no way to live and that is where I live my life from. When I do go visit someone It is so painful Im in a bad mood the whole time. I don’t want to live like this and don’t see it changing. Pain pills help but docs wont prescribe them much any more. That also should be my choice, not the docs, if I want to take pain pills to help. So since the medical profession refuses to allow us the choices of how to live I dont see how they should tell us how we can die

  215. Anonymous says:

    We should always try to prevent suicide if possible

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree in MOST cases, however some people should be allowed to make this choice without being forced to end their lives so painfully.

  216. Rebweb says:

    I’ve tempted suicide many times. The last time I was almost successful. I don’t want to die and I never have. I have gone up therapist, into a psychiatric hospital twice and take a good number of the different kinds of medications. I’ve tried changing my life. I’ve tried everything I can think of. But it stays the same. I know it’s hard to believe but some people (at least i) have bad lives and nothing will ever get better. My life goes against logic. Why do I hang on? Because I want to be a good person. Because I’m still hopeful (is not a good thing, try always failing and everything going wrong, see how that hope feels to you after a while). Mainly because I don’t want to cause any pain. Life is pain, I know. You say if my death causes people pain then there must be people who love you. It’s way more complex than that.

  217. Tom Hal says:

    I’d like in advance to express gratitude for this site’s owner or allowing a dissenting opinion; I mean no disrespect in my comment to anyone. The author of this article, together with her professional associates, misses the salient points of self determination. Psychologists may draw associations among variables, like the links between divorce and suicidal ideation by gender, or to the extent they work with natural scientists they can help us understand how the physical process of the brain influence behavior and feelings. The problem arises when psychologists then try to impose moral arguments on fundamental biology and individual choice. While I agree that most of us want to live in a culture in which deeply depressed people have resources to explore how to cope with their problems, it would be far better to circumvent those problems in the first place–like unremitting poverty, childhood abuse, or persistent unemployment, as examples.

    Of course, no one can likely eliminate these problems. People have to deal with inevitable life difficulties, and some are not as well equipped as others–or even inclined–to do so. If psychology could offer people a guaranteed way out of their life pains, which seems exceedingly unlikely, then most sufferers would flock to psychologists and suicide rates would plummet. Obviously, what psychology can do is just not sufficient–for very many sufferers. But professional psychology, much like religion in ages past (still?), presumes to judge what decisions are “right” and “wrong.” In this, it oversteps its bounds. Only the individual can decide for her- or himself what life decisions are “right” for her/him, so long as they aren’t immediately endangering others’ survival.

    Worse, professional psychologists then lobby the courts for the power to enforce commitments of other adults, including physical restraining and forced drugging. All in the name of “saving” people–doing what is in others’ best interests. Much like religion in centuries past wielded control over others’ minds and bodies because religion as an institution assumed it knew what was in others’ best interests. In this regard, I think, psychology as a discipline has become the new secular-religion, its courting of the natural sciences and statistical models notwithstanding. It’s noteworthy that even in physical medicine, allopathy, at least, physicians are not the decision makers in life-or-death matters. Physicians provide expert opinions about physiological facts which patients then use to make their own decisions. Yet psychology begs for the power both to decide, based on patients’ beliefs, what constitutes an inability to make “the right” decision, and to act to prevent “wrong” decisions.

    Whether we agree with someone else’s choice to end her or his life ought not to translate into power over that human being where otherwise she/he demonstrates a consistent, clearly articulated will not to continue living. Science doesn’t hold “values.” Humans do. And psychologists abuse their affiliation with cognitive neurosciences to lend legitimacy to their official moral evaluative stance on an ultimately private decision, an egregious infringement on individual autonomy. Thankfully, more and more nations and citizens are recognizing this as a social wrong and are taking legislative steps to correct it.

    Sorry for the long comment. Again, I mean no disrespect to anyone.

    • Dale says:

      Somehow if we do not fit into what the rest of society says we should do or how to act,then we must be fixed. If we do no harm to others or any living thing then do not judge me. I have problems and i choose to live my life in a different way but i do no harm yet i am persecuted. People make my life so miserable that i want to die.

  218. Scott Mence says:

    “Even among people who wanted to die so strongly that they tried to end their life, most ultimately chose to live.”

    Begging the question. Result is not necessarily indicative of a poor initial choice.

    “Yet another important reason to prevent suicide is its obvious finality.”

    Not a reason.

    “Even if their external situation cannot change, their inner world can.”

    ‘Can’ is irrelevant. Without cause to think that it will, falling back on this line of thinking is, in and of itself, the irrational position. Which is how most people think about suicide. I appreciate why this is the case, but please don’t demean the option as irrational just because you don’t like it. Unsupported dogma isn’t going to help people very much.

    If you want to talk seriously about suicide, you could at least try being honest about it – or at least rational.

  219. Anonymous says:

    I too feel like I don’t belong in this world. My life is a mess. That won’t change because I don’t belong here.
    Nothing wrong with going through the exit door. We all die. Why can’t we chose when?

  220. Anonymous says:

    I feel sometimes depression has nothing to do with it. You just really seriously whole heartedly want to die. Sometimes with good rationale reasons. Why should I have to exist in a place I hate doing the things I hate doing being around people I hate. I think that’s cruel and inhumane. I truly hate living. There honestly is no reason for me to stick around. Too bad I am to scared to die painfully but I am not afraid of pain. That makes no sense. I guess if I kill myself in a painful way I want to make sure I die. It would be better than hating to wake up everyday. Then think I would be doing the government a favor.

  221. Miserable says:

    People often tell me that suicide is the coward’s way out. I used to hold that belief myself. However, that is not the case. It is not easy to end your own life. There are so many reasons for which people chose life, but for others, none of those reasons are worth living. Maybe some people aren’t just suited for life. Perhaps those people can never truly be happy, and for them, suicide is the only escape from their misery. In extreme cases, perhaps assisted suicide for mental illness would be a blessing. I’m thinking now, that I am one of those people.

    • Scott M says:

      Yeah, it annoys me when people fall back on that woefully deceptive adage. Suicide takes courage, and what’s worse, I actually feel even more worthless for not having the courage to bring it all to an end.

    • Anonymous says:

      I feel the same way. ..friend.

    • minworkshop says:

      Instead of sucide, why does God keep the people who are in so much pain alive when he let’s people who are doing great things in this world die? I want to believe in God and his watching over me, but I have been in emotional pain and now physical pain since I was a child. I have nothing to live for. Why am I still here? I dont want to commit sucide as I might fail and make the situation worse, so why doesn’t God see how I feel and let someone who is full of life live and let me go to wherever. Purgatory or heaven hopefully.

    • HollowLife says:

      To Scott M.(Yeah, it annoys me when people fall back on that woefully deceptive adage. Suicide takes courage, and what’s worse, I actually feel even more worthless for not having the courage to bring it all to an end.) >>> Life is sweet in it’s bitterness and the entire life is courageous in living, in being – not in dying. Mind belongs to life as god’s made conditions to sustain existence while life feeds on life. Mind can never develop courage to end itself and not even death can end it, it will rearrange itself back to conditions and still maintain it’s being, it’s personality. Mind is vision, being and becoming, and jumps from life to life and always caries the essence of life and the ME, the EGO. As to my understanding life is semi/conscious and mostly unconscious, but man has the conscious/capacity to deconstruct conditions and actually go beyond mind and god. Knowing the facts that I am a puppet to conditions to slave for life’s purpose and work myself out for the conditions of being and be a breeding stock, is very tiresome. All senses are life’s conditions for the purpose of reproduction while life maintains it’s beauties and charms to attract and distract the mind and slave to being a ‘mammy or a daddy,’ and think that I am somebody…this is actually the deception that unperceived forces impose on every being and keep them in shackles and slavery. You can see it out of your window or when you go to church, the sensual attraction steer the mind and keeps it in bondage just for a fleeting satisfaction that can also bring troubles and miseries. The facts of nature always tries to beautify itself and that death and ugliness are always being hidden beneath the beauties and charms. life and mind will not let me rest but knowing the facts of slavery will lift some of my burdens and as I contemplate over them daily, and seeing myself deteriorating, the grip of attraction will be loosen… also knowing that all of these have no basis but lead to suffering and death, mind will be dissatisfied and eventually will annihilate itself. Finally the mind will disintegrate from being and gain freedom from all conditions of being and becoming. Just making sure that there’s nothing left to hold me back and everything is thrown to the winds, then beyond doubt there’s no self in it, just conditions which have appeared by life and will disappear by death. When this becomes ingrained in me deeply, life and death looses their integration and personality and mind goes beyond thought. A spark of mind can blow off the entire existence and disappear from time altogether. This is meant that before time begun the timeless will reveal itself to all existence as eternity and that life and death are only shadows. Just a game that whosoever finds ways to stop, disappears beyond time into eternity. I haven’t wash now for a long time and start to stink and I perceive with mind the mind that is unwilling to find satisfaction anywhere, always outrageous and complains, and be sure that others will complain because of you and vice versa. This is the life’s miseries and also of death’s. How can this mind find peace in death? surely not even god’s are able to to find peace within themselves. This mind needs to be slapped upside the head or taken to the forest and tied it up with a rope and still wont remain there, how can it remain in the grave? Train it, kill it every day little by little until it’s visions knowledge and hopes blur up. Don’t listen to the doctors when they are telling you where the problem is…don’t listen to clergy for any stupid hopes, don’t listen to you family for kindness and lovey/dovey assistance…push god and all god’s aside and see if you can, what’s really happening with you. You are the source and also it’s cure. Think for yourself and by yourself until mind disappears. Get lost as far as you can and never look back. Extinguish yourself and dissolve into eternity – That’s the only purpose to being alive, to relocate eternity……..Why suffer for this conjured up and deteriorating life? Think and discard all you can discard until you are feather/light…..

    • Ted N says:

      I feel the same way you all do.

  222. Jason H says:

    I was infected with HIV at age 8 from dirty medical blood. My entire life I have had to come up with $28,000 a year for one pill. I’ve spent $500k out of pocket. More than anything.. I’m tired of being blamed for a nanovirus. I’m tired of people in Christian churches trying to kill me because of a nanovirus. I’m tired of being a slave to Big Pharma and our country because of a nanovirus. I will be ending my life not out of medical needs.. but simply to stop being made fun of by asshole Christians.

    • Jacqueline Sweeney says:

      I am a Christian and I will never make fun of you! A Christian church that makes fun of anyone is fake because we are no better then they are. Christ died for all of us and His love is for us all! You hang in there and don’t worry about what others has to say about you. You are beautiful and you are loved. Hold your head up and show all that you are somebody in the eyes of God! His eyes is the only ones that matters anyway, not man. Man will treat you wrong but God loves keeps you strong in the mist of your enemies! REMEMBER… Christian or not, you are somebody and loved by God!!!

    • sydchic says:

      IN my case I have dealt with a catholic mafia of police/doctors you name it-the do gooders I didn’t even invite or want anything to do with, wreck my life and put those i love in the ground the main stand over since 1985 ex church person was for money and young sex—it now had me diagnosed as crazy about the things done to us-the violence/deprivation psychological scars now have me wanting to die-i think it humane.Christians are controlled idiots keep away,they want genocide and to use up anything they think worthy or sinners-to them its your fault.

    • JannaG says:

      I am a Christian too, and I also would never make fun of you! I have high risk hpv – not from sleeping around – but from being physically intimate while married. I found out after being divorced for several years, during which time I was abstinent. Many women have this, but I was unfortunate enough to have my body not suppress the virus. This resulted in a complete hysterectomy to avoid cervical cancer. Some people are very ignorant, wanting to believe that doing the right things will always protect you from STDs and other forms of harm. That being said, I’ve met wonderful Christians who are more open minded. I have no doubt that Christ himself is very angry with the asshole Christians. I look forward to the day when He has a word or two or more to say to those people to put them in their place. I hope that you are able to meet nicer people in this world. We are out there.

  223. Alexis says:

    Saying “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem” is misleading and wrong. Some people, such as myself, have depression built into our brains; no amount of therapy, medication, counseling, or intervention can keep the suffering at bay. It is a permanent problem, and we have no idea what specifically causes depression, or how to resolve it. Live with suicidal depression your entire adult life, receiving no benefit from any sort of treatment, and then tell me it’s a “temporary problem.”

  224. nor says:

    You know what I hate? “Call 911! Remove tools of suicide! Don’t let her/him die!” . Will you live a life for that person? Will you bear his/her pain for them? If this person suffered something that made him/her so in pain can you erase this happening? The answer is ‘no’ you wont, no you can’t. If somebody is in distress it’s right to help but lack of respect of somebodys will to die is not right. There are fates far worse than death itself. I wish everybody beautiful lives but I understand that sometimes its just too much.

  225. Junglebeat says:

    I’m
    The most miserable
    No friends and maybe became schizophrenia
    I don’t like my family as much as I love my friends and now I cannot make friends because I’m a piece of shit who cannot function in the real world
    No one will ever love me that I can love back
    I’m so fucked

  226. Missing jungle says:

    Once I entertained suicdal thoughts in my head it’s never left
    It made more sense to just quit this game called life
    I don’t see the reason because the society don’t give me reason
    It’s likely a miserable life because I’m having problems since a child
    Emotionally and very awkward
    I can’t flow with this society and corporate world. This madness insane life when I’m so different and see life in a different way
    I wish I never live in a city
    I would have been much happier to live with the primitive people in the mountains making my own food or starving
    But having a community
    Which is lacking in this society so much
    Ah life

    What a mess

  227. Timbo says:

    I don’t understand the vehemence with which the law and “well meaning people” determine that suicide is wrong. What if every single person had an “opt out” button installed on their arm which gently and painlessly lead to their death? Would religion somehow hold us here on earth? What are the benefits to someone being forced to exist on a planet where they’ve decided they don’t want to live? The fact is that most people who experience mental illnesses don’t like the way they’re being treated and can’t understand why they’re blamed for the way they can’t help thinking. If this world was more accepting maybe people wouldn’t want to opt out due to being completely misunderstood but that’s not where things are at, and other people don’t have the right to hold people to compulsorily live on this plane. If a person wants to die they should be allowed to die, full stop, if that’s what they decide. It’s not like they haven’t thought about it, and it’s not like regret isn’t inherent in any attempt at dying.

    • Lucy says:

      Hi Timbo. I think if people had an opt out button they could press there would be two kinds of people, those who press it prematurely without thinking it through (impulsive act) and then those who continue to struggle but feel a sense of calm and peace because they know they have control to push that button anytime they want. Its not the option of an accessible, peaceful way to die that’s the issue but the feeling of control. When a person doesn’t feel in control it can make them feel stressed and frantic. I mean think about it what’s the rush to suicide if you can always press a button? It may give someone the courage to face another day, no rush and maybe the next day you won’t feel like pressing this button. I don’t think people think of suicide because they don’t like the world, they think of suicide because they don’t like their lives, themselves.

    • Tom Hal says:

      Nicely said. Agreed.

  228. Dan says:

    Yesterday was my birthday. I had dozens of calls and messages from well-wishers, and my wife decorated the whole house and cooked me an amazing meal. And I thought, “why do people have to make my life so difficult and create all this extra work on my birthday of all days?”

    I’ve felt this way for 20 years. Tell me again why suicide is not rational?

  229. R says:

    I am the R of the previous comment, and after hearing all of your pain, I just want to tell you that I love you all. I am sorry that the burdens you carry are so heavy. I wish I could take them away from each and every one of you. I know that many of you are to tired too try anymore, and believe me, I get that. Life can be so beautiful and so terrible at the same time, and the only thing that gives any of it meaning is love. Even if you have no one else who loves you, I do, and if you do decide that the pain is unbearable, know that there is at least one person out there who does not judge you.

    • Jacqueline Sweeney says:

      I agree with you “R”. Everyone here is loved by me but more by God! It grieves my heart to know they want to end their life. However, I have been there but I think God that He helped me to see that life is worth living if I live it for Him, not man or myself! Since I put Him in charge of my life, what once was ugly because of my depression is now beautiful because of God! I live my life for Him now and do that which is pleasing to Him. I am much happier because He gives me joy inside when times are hard. He let’s me know that everything will be alright because He has brought me out of darkness. I walk in the light now and peace follows me instead of the pain that use to. You see, years of mental hospitals wasn’t my answer, God was!!!

  230. Anonymous says:

    no because I am black in America I would much rather die than hear how everyone hates me to add insult to injury I am also bipolar2 what do I do in a city I can’t escape but won’t hire me and wants me dead lifes not awesome for A Black female in Milwaukee wisconsin I just want to die but the law doesn’t allow it but if I angered a cop he could kill me and not even lose his job I just don’t want to feel pain White people can have this world as far as I care.

  231. Anonymous says:

    Eventually, my ability to tolerate my own pain and suffering will surpass my ability to tolerate my concern for leaving behind those who care for me.

    At 41, I have struggled with Major Depression since I was 17; the best explanation I am given is that this truly is a chemical imbalance. I’ve never experimented with drugs and I rarely drink, a few glasses of wine a year during dinner parties or special occasions.

    I am educated, high-functioning, and generally have a job that I enjoy. At five years, it’s a job I’ve been at for the longest time in a while. I have had success with medication and therapy, but severe episodes reoccur, lasting a few months, or up to two years.

    I am fully aware that things can and do get better for a time. However, it is a repeated traumatic experience to enter into a period of remission feeling strong, celebrating your strength and endurance but there is always (always!) concern of a potential and unexplained relapse into an acute episode.

    I am an advocate for treatment, but even during remission I consider how many more times can I handle feeling like everything is always at risk if/when another episode comes on.

    • Lucy says:

      No pleasure without pain, no success without any failure, no such thing as a constant state of pain nor a constant state of happiness.

    • FFSL says:

      No Lucy, pleasure is quite possible without pain, and happiness is quite possible without depressive episodes, as evidenced by the many people who go through life without depression. I assume you’re one of them, or you’d be showing more understanding and wouldn’t be handing out trite sayings to suffering people.

  232. Anonymous says:

    >an irrevocable act
    So what?
    I have made peace with my death.
    Once one embraces the inevitable, death seems trivial, a mere link in a huge chain of events that leads nowhere.

  233. Tristan says:

    Hi my name is T … I have been very depressed since I was a kid ( I have also been stuck in a dream/ delusion to),
    I’ve been through traumatic events that have put me in a bad mental state and
    Ive been very depressed most of my life. I have tried to commit suicide probably 10+ times and almost attempted it probably 30+ times, some days I hate life so much I just want to die but i wouldn’t be able to hurt my family and other people who have helped for all they have done for me. Lifes very intolerable sometimes, I Want to die on a daily basis. But what’s weird is I love life. But I hate me,my mistakes, the pain I cause and so much more. I try so hard to work but I can’t/couldn’t keep a job… Sometimes I wish I would die by a random accident, I do love life but I hate people (not all people though)… I love this earth, the animals, the fish, I love nature. I believe in God but I feel he would of helped me if he was really there for me ( but maybe he is and that’s why I’m still here! I do have some faith!). I always feel like I’m destined for something big.. Like changing this world… Yea I just got off topic a little bit aha …
    Well I think assisted suicide should be allowed but what if they’re just having a bad day/ going through a stressful rough patch in there life. It could and probably will get better so why throw it away when things/your life could make a 100% turn around and you could be living on a mountain peak and not hiding in a limestone cavern in your mind.
    Ya a little off topic …

    • Lucy says:

      I understand you when you say you don’t hate life. Its not a contradiction. One can see that there is glory, beauty, wonder and love in life but feel divorced from it in ones own life.

  234. Ashutosh Arora says:

    most of the readers might not agree with me, but I firmly believe in destiny, and suicide is just one of the instruments to end life. If it has to end, it will, the process of the end might be different in every case (it could be illness, murder, accident or some other way also). It is not in our hands to kill ourselves or someone else. We un-necessarily give importance to ourselves, and consider ourselves the reason of everything that is occurring around us. If it had been so, life would have been completely different and a complete mess, where everything would be happening according to our wishes. Thankfully, it’s not like that.

  235. caedus14 says:

    I think suicide should be legal and made available to those who want to end their lives. At the end of the day, it’s my life. I can take it if I choose. All that making it legal will do is reduce the mess and the number of other people that might be hurt by my taking my own life. If there was a quick and sure-fire way for me to die, I would take it this instant.

  236. R says:

    I have suffered intense, chronic debilitating pain for many, many years. My fibromyalgia is one of the worst cases my doctor has ever seen. At best, it feels like a really bad flu, with my entire body aching and tired. At worst it is so unbearable that it takes my breath away. I struggle just to cope with the pain for one full minute as it consumes my consciousness, and then after that moment, it is a struggle just to make it through the next minute. Most days the pain is on par with child birth or kidney stones. Needless to say, I am disabled, I lost my beloved job as a philosophy professor, and there is little that I can give to the world in this state. I hardly sleep, but the worst moment is when I wake up and realize that I have to do another day of this unending torture. In the midst of this, reading Eckhart Tolle, I found a way to surrender and even have experienced moments of joy amidst the pain. I am not depressed, which is truly a miracle in itself. I have learned that with so much physical suffering, I cannot afford to add any mental suffering to that, so I never ask ‘why me?’ and I choose minute by minute to surrender to my pain, rather than resist what is. But, if I could have one wish fulfilled (besides magically waking up completely cured), it would be that I could die tomorrow. I stay for my loved ones, but no one who does not experience chronic pain to this degree will be able to understand what a sacrifice that truly is for me, how it takes everything I have, and how I do it for love, and love alone.

    I am sorry, but I disagree with you that suicide is never appropriate. I believe that many suicides, particularly those caused by mental illness alone might eventually improve, and those people might be happy that they didn’t end it. But there are people with on-going intolerable pain that will not go away but will also not kill them. When this inexorable pain is accompanied with decent mental health, I can see a person being able to make a rational, non-impulsive decision to end their life on their own terms.

    It is tempting for those who do have full, healthy lives with occasional trials to think, “I have dealt with my trials and life has been worth it,” and impose that thinking on others. But that is a mistake: it is one thing to go through intense pain for a short period of time (think a broken bone or child birth); this can be dealt with and when it is over, the pain is often forgotten. It is another thing to go through the same level of pain for months and years. All of the reserves one has for coping with pain get depleted and the unrelenting nature of the pain, together with the loneliness and disability, begin to destroy all meaning in life. Rather than judge people in this condition, realize that, having not endured the same thing, you are not in a position to judge what is best for such individuals. It is not appropriate to say that it is better for them to live than to die, since you have no way of knowing what they are going through.

  237. Anon says:

    My reason being for not wanting to sustain this life is my cognitive and mental aptitude. I have learning differences. I struggle everyday. I may be able to comprehend several concrete and abstract concepts. My speed of process and memory are piss poor. I can not remember events that pertain to my own life or facts. I make errors in every day. I have relentless issues holding down entry level jobs. Due to my working memory. Growing up I had goals and I was able to fulfill some of those. I continued on with education after high school. After earning my bachelor’s degree I have struggled with the real world. I can’t see myself having a family. Which is anothe goal I had. I have had to rely on my family and boyfriend for financial resources on and off throughout the past 5 years. I am a royal pain in the ass. I know that as I age I will deal with a degenerative mind. I have lost contact with other family and friends. Everyday I deal with not being able to retrieve information. My self-confidence and self-value is low. I’m almost 30 and my mind set is poor. I would rather not live another day feeling this way than to continue to exist knowing my life will more than likely never meet my goals.

    • Lucy says:

      And so with all of that try and have some compassion for yourself as I’m sure you would if it were another telling your story. Show yourself a little compassion. Its not to say you should make on decision or another no, what it means is that instead of beating yourself up for your lack of ability or lack of accomplishment, give yourself a little care. Its not always easy to be objective about subjective pain but think of how you would feel towards another who is saying what you’re saying and then give yourself the same consideration you would give them, which is the feeling of empathy and that leads to compassion.

  238. DC says:

    No matter who you are. I want you to know that you all are beautiful. God loves you and you are special. I wish I could hug all of you and listen to whatever is that troubles you and help you find a solution to the madness occupying your minds.

    If you’re reading, I’m asking God to stir your hearts with a peace that will surpass your understanding and a love that is unwavering. May he spark a change in your heart!

    I love you. He loves you!

  239. Anonymous says:

    You are just casually ignoring the other 10% who still wish to die even after there first attempt, such as myself. Why let them continue suffering for no good reason?

    • Anonymous says:

      Very good point IMHO – after all not everyone is completely lost in their heads …

    • TheTodd says:

      Because even if you are still wanting to die after your first attempt, it’s still no guarantee you will always be miserable and want to die, no matter how much you think it is. Notice what was actually said in the statistic above: that 90% of people who survive a suicide don’t die of suicide later. It doesn’t say they immediately decide that life is worthwhile, for many it still takes some time and life changes. So you may not even be one of the 10%.

    • Anonymous says:

      I do believe every suffering has a purpose. Can you read – try reading The Light Between Us – I think it might help you.

    • Tom Hal says:

      TheTodd, I don’t know if you’ll return to read comments to yours, but you touched upon something I think is critical to the dialogue on self determination. I think the discussion on people deciding to terminate their own lives suffers from several reasoning flaws. It’s as if because suicide would be the permanent cessation of life, and further, because most of us very much want to remain alive, we generally conclude that others should remain alive–or rather that these two facts justify intervening where other adults’ decisions to end their lives are concerned. But I don’t think permanence is a sufficient criterion to justify preventing an action. We make decisions every day that preclude other decisions. That seems to me just a fact of human existence. Few would counsel someone extremely unhappy with a marriage over a long time to stick it out just because a divorce might be an irrevocable split. There’s also a possibility that deeply unhappy marriages will find happiness again, but we respect people’s freedom to decide whether they wish to continue relationships. I think we should afford people the same freedom regarding their relationships with themselves.

      I also believe the so-called sanctity of life (or reverence for life) is quite a charade. We may value our own lives deeply and those of others we care about, but clearly, from the way we build our society, we do not value every human life. Life-value is neither an objective fact nor a universally held value. We have no business deciding that others should value life as we happen to–indeed, we have no business deciding for others what values they ought to hold.

      Neither the permanence of death (inevitable, anyhow) nor the frequency of the qualified value of life (our own and those of people we happen to value) is a sufficient condition to justify imposing our will on others.

  240. Robbie says:

    I’ve been in so much emotional pain and I want to die. It’s very hard to explain. I’m completely aware of EVERYTHING. Sometimes I feel like that’s part of my desire to give up. Honestly I’ve already given up inside, I just have my dogs that I can’t leave. They don’t deserve to have their lives changed because I’m a little bitch. I don’t feel like oh I want to kill myself,look at me. I feel like I’m done. My heart has so much regret, sorrow and grief inside that I wake up crying. I have tears pouring down my face right now. I have zero desire for anything in life. I only get out of bed when I have to. I used to think sunrises were beautiful now they literally haunt me because I feel like it’s another day in this pain. I wish there were a magic cure to stop the feelings I have. The ironic thing is I used to tell people “look at how people live in the rest of the world, I bet 70% of humans don’t even have a mattress to sleep on” and quite honestly I didn’t understand depression. I got mad at people that have so much while some people live their whole lives in hunger. Little did I know I would be right here not having a clue how to live without waking up crying from nightmares, falling apart in the store, driving down the road screaming at the top of my lungs. Why does suicide have to be such a bad thing? Why can’t we celebrate someone being released from the pain they are suffering from? Mental, emotional, physical? I’m 45 and my knees are shot. They hurt every day,every step but they don’t compare to the burning pain in my heart.

  241. Martyn says:

    Hi everyone I have Multiple Sclerosis and am in constant pain.I have prayed to die in my sleep almost every night
    since early 2001.Life is extremely difficult and I feel my spirit fading every day.

  242. SuchIsLife says:

    “Permanent solution to a temporary problem” huh? I don’t know about that. I see it more as a permanent solution to a permanent problem, at least for me. It really depends on the individual situation, but there is simply no hope for some people. I deserve to die, not because I was bullied as a kid or something like that. (Which by the way, I’ve gone through that, and it is really not as bad as people make it out to be). I’ve committed horrible crimes in my life. Crimes that, if anyone found out about, they wouldn’t want to be in the same room as me. I deserve to die, so let people like me at least make one good decision in our lives and kill ourselves.

    • Reem says:

      or find redemption through good deeds and create something good in this world to replace the bad.I know this sounds awfully cheesy and if you knew me it’s extremely uncharacteristic for me to say this but i did horrible stuff too and what keeps me going is the fact that it’s my duty to correct them and repent and spread light instead of darkness.Forgiving yourself is difficult maybe even impossible ,trust me i know, but all we can do is try.

  243. Anonymous says:

    Due to an auto accident, it broke my back in two places, caused nerve damage in my back and along the left side of my body.my brain was damaged too. The doctors I’ve seen have told me that everything will degrade over time.
    The accident was in 2003, and ive degraded quite a bit. I get lost going to and from familiar places, my short term memory has gotten a lot worse. Within a few years I won’t be able to care for myself. I do not under any circumstances want to be put in a home and linger for who knows how long. I don’t want someone to have to clean me when I soil myself nor have to feed me when my hands shake so much I cannot feed myself. My wife is divorcing me due to these issues I have and none of my kids live close enough to leech off of them.
    Ive decided when I get to the point where caring for myself is really difficult I’ll end my life.
    I’ve already made my funeral arrangements and have paid for it. My will is in order, power of attorney and durable power of attorney and living will are all in order.
    I’ll withdraw all my cash and put it in my safe so my kids won’t have to fight with the bank to get any money.
    I’ll go on my terms.

  244. foreigner says:

    i can’t see people’s eyes it’s hard to breath everyday

  245. Anonymous says:

    I believe I should be able to choose when I die. I believe physicians should be allowed to provide the medication. Mental illness is terminal. People may have a remission, achieve control with medication or ECT but others achieve no relief. I fall into the last category. I have desired a peaceful death for the last 20 years. I need a physician to provide the appropriate medication. It is my life and should be my decision when to end it.

  246. Brent Fisher says:

    Three words: No lives matter. Now that I got that off my chest I have already killed myself on November 12, 2001 and have already figured out the answer. You have the polarity wrong. Suicide is a TEMPORARY solution to a PERMANENT problem. So your life stinks and you want it all to end so you go to the nightstand and pick up the revolver and point it at your head and pull the trigger….yep…the gun jams, the bullet is a dud and the propellant won’t combust or you chicken out before guns even factor in. Now heres the creepy morbid part. YOU experienced a malfunctioning gun. Your PARENTS and friends now have a dead carcass of yourself complete with body piercings by SigSauer complete with clean up bill, not to mention carriying on without a son. In the time when you killed yourself the other people see you die and everybody mourns your death. So it appears like a permanent solution–to THEM. But that doesn’t fix the problem that in the identical universe that supports a survival scenario that you are still ALIVE and SUFFERING, with a lot of ‘book’ /’financial month’ ,etm. to get through. So your suicide solved nothing and also made the people in your original life very sad. Worse if you DID experience the gun actually discharging you are now in a universe that supports more life, but as punishment, you are more damaged, possibly lost sight in one eye, having a sketchy sense of smell, etc. So you killed yourself with the solution of suicide, but you experience continued life which did nothing to solve your problem.

    If you are thinking about killing yourself. DON’T. You will not die and the universe in which you do will make a lot of people sad. It’s a temporary solution, after the gun smoke clears you are still faced with the task of being alive possibly with reduced biological/sensory capabilities. In this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics. There is no free lunch. There truly is no way out. It’s just cheaper to stay alive and wait for better weather.

  247. rob says:

    no one should be forced to live.

  248. tanya says:

    Your article referred to people with “temporary” truama, stresses or what ever the case may be. However have you considered the “invisible fighters” I am talking about people with severe chronic pain the type of people that have tried everything from different specialist (who all just shake their heads and say sorry there is nothing we can do you will need to be on severe pain medication for the rest of your life) to any and all alternative medicine and treatments yet they suffer day in and day out?. Say you have someone who doesn’t suffer from depression in over words they do not have a lack of seratonin or a chemical imbalance. Yet they are depressed because their pain keeps them from living a normal life it keeps them from following their dreams or reaching there potential worst of all it keeps them from caring and loving the people in there life that means everything to them. I have had 5 back operations, 6 abdominal and 5 other operations hand ,head ,knee, theigh … and yet for the last decade I fight every day I lost my job (promising architect) I couldnt do any activities/sport ( got provincial colours) before yet I got married to a extremely supportive husband that knew I would not be able to bare children for 6 different specialists confirmed it. I also have very supportive parents and would probably not have been here to type this if it weren’t for them. Last year I fell pregnant which baffled all the doctors and I carried full term I have a beautiful healthy baby girl. But!!!! My pain wich has always been at a 7-12 out of 10 has increased after birth to unbareable. Plus now I have to take care of my girl and not being able to sometimes just breaks my heart and she deserves better. I was fine with the fact that I won’t be able to have children not because I didn’t want to have but because I would want to give my children all the love and affection they deserve (ironically I against all odds end up having one)…Lets go back to (invisible fighters) Nobody except my parents and my husband knows ,why because I try to keep myself locked away in my house as much as possible and when the time comes where I have no choice but to face other people I literally put on a mask and fake the hell out of it so much so that by the time we leave I have on numerous occasions broke down in tears and even fainted. I have never been the type of person to seek fake pitty or attention I hate it so would rather pretend all is fine even though my eyes are bloodshot and I struggle to even move sometimes from the outside I look normal. So in conclusion I find myself at a point where the pain has destroyed me mentally, physically and emotionally and worst thing about it, it is not temporary like in your article it is chronic never ending and there is nothing, nothing anyone can do about it believe me I have tried. Now read the effects of children growing up with a parent with chronic pain…. so what is worse I have 2 options keep on suffering day in day out to the point where I loose my mind and my family has to deal with all that comes with it the crying, anger, frustration or just end it all? the only reason I haven’t yet is because I am trying to weigh up what is worse for my daughter having to grow up with a mom the way I am now or having to deal with growing up with out knowing me or understanding why I left her. Both will leave her with extreme emotional scars but wich one is worse?

    • A says:

      You have post natal depression. It’s another level of depression. It can be helped with hormone therapy. Your body has dropped hormone levels and they need to be addressed. It’s a different form of anxiety and depression. Hormonal can be treated, easily. Get help now. You won’t even need counselling. You will get better so much sooner and will be able to raise your much-wanted child.
      From Leeds, UK.

    • Anonymous says:

      Your baby girl needs you.

  249. Anonymous says:

    “Oh, but what if it all got better tomorrow?” Aaaannnddd… What if it doesn’t? What if the facts of your external situation mean you’re NEVER going to “feel better inside?” When you have no friends to talk to, no money to go out or do anything – or even make necessary repairs to your home – when EVERY. SINGLE. JOB YOU APPLY FOR gets back with “thanks, but no thanks”, when trying to start your own business doesn’t work, when you’re exhausted and in pain EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. When your family stopped talking to you years ago. When all you can see is another 30-40yrs of agonising misery. When everything works just fine for everyone else, but you try the same things and get nowhere. Funny how the kind of people who know a suicidal person personally, and will say crap like “oh, it’ll get better”, never actually DO anything to MAKE it better. Your suicidal friend has no money to go anywhere? Oh, but it’s just encouraging them to not bother looking too hard for work if you invite them out – even just over to yours to hang out in a different scene – and pick up the tab. You’re in a position to hire someone, for a job your unemployed, suicidal pal could easily do? Yeah, but they’ll just bring everyone else down, won’t they? Best to hire the pretty, bubbly, FUN person you know. Spend a half hour or more actually listening to them? Too much negativity, man! People can’t even be genuinely interested in an answer to “How are you?” that’s anything other than “Fine”, and yet we’re supposed to accept that, somehow, everything will magically “get better”? Yes, some people DO manage to find ways to feel better – great. Good for them. For the rest of us – hurry up with legalising euthanasia. Sorry that someone wanting to die makes you feel uncomfortable – not everyone has people who’ll do things – even little things – that take the edge off of that kind of pain. Some of us just have the pain, and no hope of it ever ending. And the knowledge that, if you ASKED for something that might make you feel better, you’d either be ignored entirely, or told you were being “selfish” or “manipulative.”

    • Lucy says:

      People use those platitudes because they don’t know what to say and they don’t know how to fix the situation. They are at a loss. Forgive them. The answer is not out there my friend, some people seem to rebalance themselves with intervention and for others it just doesn’t work out. I know this sounds a little harsh but if you cannot fix, heal, recover with or without the help of others then it cannot be done.

    • HollowLife says:

      Anonymous, thanks to the fact that we, at least, as humans, have the will to come to the decision and end our own lives, because other animals can’t. It’s ridiculous for the world/intelligence and their laws to keep people hostages in their suffering because some god or scripture says we can’t die whenever we want even if we are in great suffering and pain…it’s god’s will to decide. See the contradiction that Through this mentality/stipulation humanity has become ill and stiff that if we think about death, is god forbid, Life has become a medical corporation and experiment in beholding suffering and feed the experiment, even though with an overpopulated world, with starvation and inhuman conditions, but instead, we must war, and be left there suffering through mutilations… Our great inheritance and our perfect Self…God/mentality. One has to discourage oneself so completely and see the facts of life that there isn’t any recovery from deterioration suffering and death and therefore, so disgusted with life and self, finds means to extinguish ones conditions. Best regards.

  250. Anonymous says:

    I know this was written for people in developed countries, life in a third world country is so hard that i have decided to end my life and not prolong my misery. My only choice is killing myself, nothing is ever going to change in the fucking middle east. I think I have the right to kill myself.

    • Lucy says:

      I don’t personally know the author but I’m sure enough to say this was written for everyone everywhere, and as you can see it has reached everyone everywhere who are struggling with this issue. You’re not alone in the ME or anywhere else. In fact it looks to me as if we are alone together (lol)

  251. Hopeless says:

    P.S. to my previous story. All the money I gamble with is MY own…never my husbands’. But I only get SS and give him $500 a month. But my problem was getting credit cards and racking up the 30k debt.

  252. Hopeless says:

    I am nearly 77 and have been a compulsive gambler for over 20 years. I am now almost 30k in debt and my husband has said he would divorce me if it happened again. I gave him 80k when we married 13 years ago and we have moved 3 times..he gave 20k to pay debts twice…so I now have only 40k but it is in the house that we said would be our last. He thinks I am saving 1k a month and when he finds out that I haven’t…..dooms day. I rather die than go thru his wrath and be put out on the streets. Please don’t ask me about Gamblers Anonymous…been there…horrible, people really bad! I had kidney Cancer 2 years ago and now have one kidney. I think if I drink everyday, it will kill me.

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t give up hope. I gambled away thousands but just wait. The money will come somehow. Your life is more important.

  253. Anonymous says:

    So a better option is to live in pain? This article is extremely condescending towards someone who is suicidal because it’s the equivalent of telling someone it will get better with no details as to how. & statistical data does nothing to help one way or the other at least for me because on one side I can think I’m not this person so they don’t know I would regret it & on the other I can think oh my problems are of so little value & common that they are not valid therefore I am not of value & it doesn’t matter if I die either way.

  254. daniel says:

    If a person has something to live for, like a family of their own, then suicide should, at least, be reconsidered. If someone has nothing that makes them happy, has no reason to live, and wants the misery of living a hollow life to end, then they have every right to choose suicide as a solution to a permanent problem. Life isn’t all rainbows and smiles for everyone. For some it is a bottomless chasm of despair.

  255. Joy says:

    My life, my choice. I grew up abused, physically, sexually, emotionally, abandoned and people have always treated me like garbage not worth their time, to this day. Why bother? I hate people, I hate life. Always have. Why force someone to live miserably for decades? I’ve done so much to be a good person, educate myself, have a career, try to find love and start a family. People just use and abuse me. Don’t wanna deal anymore. Why suffer? It never gets better for me no matter what I do I end up treated like I’m nothing. And maybe I am. So be it. I’m not picking myself up again this time.

    • Sandy says:

      I feel you sweetie. I have been through all you have stated. No matter how well I made others feel, I was the least denominator to all. I’d always feel like I was destine to have a life of “shit”. I was kind hearted without expecting accolades, just only a little appreciation but ultimately, left feeling used and worthless. I’m nearly 60 years old and lost everything less than 10 years ago, because the man who promised to take care of me for life chose drugs and alcohol over me.

      We feel we have a dark cloud over us and no matter what, as I stated before, life turns to “shit”.

      Even good events in life hold little joy – often – if you’re even able to be there when they happen.

      I came to this site because I was looking for an anonymous way out also.

      I tried to “step up” and get a job after being a stay at home mom for 18 plus years. I applied for a cashiers job at a large tourist general store but, because of my age and not having worked for all those years, I was put in charge of “maintaining the restrooms”. I swallowed my pride and accepted the position although I had skills in accounting, management and helped my husband run his custom painting business.

      I cleaned toilets. I, being one who always needs to please because in my mind, that is the way to get love or respect, did above and beyond what was expected of me. Hard, nasty, physical labor that wore me out to the point of bad health…and, at an end, unappreciated.

      There’s much more sadness I could tell you but our story is already sad enough…but, I need to have a glimmer of hope and the part of me who wants to help or be there for someone, I feel, has led me to this forum and you. Maybe I’m a fool, but my heart hurts for you and anyone so sad..

      If I can do anything, even be a sounding board for you, please allow this. Let’s find a way to a meaningful existence.

    • Help says:

      Hey there, you want someone to talk to? I feel exactly like you, exactly.

    • Anonymous says:

      If we ever met I know I’d find many reasons to love you. And I myself want to die.

    • Anonymous says:

      I felt like I wrote this. You & I feel the same way. I feel like I want to die. I am not trying to die, but if I do i do not think i would fight. Just— let me go. i am done with this.

    • W. M. says:

      I cry and smile with understanding. May peace or release find us both.

    • Anonymous says:

      I feel the same.

  256. Anne says:

    Suicide for someone with depression absolutely should be allowed. But that should be worked through with just as much thought and care as someone with any other illness – not a spur-of-the-moment thing but a months-long process working with therapists to see if it is something that can be brought. How long is considered temporary even with drugs? When I can say every single day I wake up saying “Dang it not again?” – even on my wedding day which was a happy time for me, and every day of my honeymoon, and on my college graduation day, etc – I can be happy and still be ill. And no – there is no cure. And meds are expensive especially now that so many insurance plans are not willing to cover mental problems. (Aside – did you know that our wonderful govt. declared that victims on 9/11 can get medical care payed by the govt. but it specifically says not mental health care?) How many days/weeks/months/years does it take? Someone with cancer can say after 5 or 10 years that they want to throw in the towel. Someone with “just” depression? It can be more than 30 years, and still considered a “temporary” problem.

  257. Anonymous says:

    Of course not! If you want to die, it’s your choice. Nobody else has any right to stop you, they can obviously help you rethink a decision or if you survive (like me), then prevent you from trying again.

  258. Anonymous says:

    This dos not explain why!!!! So WHY is it when the world is over populated you can not kill your self when your life has no meaning and you don’t want to cos the same pain on a child you might ever have?

  259. THD says:

    put a goal like myself i will protect those around and i never fear death i do work off a horse i sweat in the sun at over 50 grades 1 and i drink water 2 while i nonstop cut woods for 3 hours or pull a cargo with crops and i mean cargo for a horse anyway i do with for over 3 years after last attempt of suicide i never once got pat on back or hear great job only words like he’s insane or plain stupid not that i will ever take any words in consideration in short i am trying to say how many times you tried to kill yourself and you failed because your body or heart just won’t stop beating and how happy you where those seconds believing that you will die in the next seconds only to wake up from unconsciousness only to figure out that those motherfuckesrs that put me with their words and judge in a well for fucking 6 hours in cold water are not worth dying for so i got up from that well and never once from those 3 years ever listen to anyone than just my own body when i am tired i sleep and when i am awake until my last drop off energy i work cuz i know i won’t die maybe i will shorten my spawn life but i rather live a short stupid life than a long one like any of those who believ out there they have the hardest time i don’t i am having fun for last 3 years and if i could go back in time i would never change back cuz i love fighting and protecting those around me no matter how solo i am and just to let you know i have a small farm and they are my life

  260. Kennedy CN says:

    I’m 13 and I want to die, but I dont necessarily want to commit suicide. I just want everything to end. Nothing is helping me and it feels like I’m stuck (I go to counseling).I think about suicide everyday. I’m too afraid to call a suicide hotline because I never know what to say, I don’t even truly understand why I am feeling like this and it’s hard for me to actually talk about it. My problems are so unimportant and stupid, Like “You want to die because you’re ugly, what a big baby”. I also hate myself, and dream about being someone else,someone more beautiful. I am very ugly, and black.I look at myself and I see a monster. I want to look like Marilyn Monroe, Kate Upton, Audrey Hepburn, Kerry Washington, and Beyonce. People have even told me I am ugly, so I know it is true. I act so weird around people, and it makes me seem like a retard. I just started self harming, but only scratching myself to make welts. I really like the pain. It’s also something I deserve. I also have a plan for the suicide. I really want and believe I need help.

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m sorry you’re feeling that way. Those women you mentioned have a lot of money to help them look that pretty. Look up celebs without makeup. It’s surprising what money can do for looks… If you have a plan, please reach out to a hotline. All you have to say is hi or I need help or I want to commit suicide. They are trained and will take it from there and help. I probably should take my own advice. I used to be the pretty girl. Popular with all different groups. I was nice though not mean or conceited. I had two babies in a row and gained a ton of weight. I’ve been trying so hard to lose it and can’t. I am miserable and feel so fat I don’t even want to leave the house. I’m sorry you hate yourself. I understand. I hope you find someone to talk to.

    • Lucy says:

      You really want and believe you need help. That’s a start. I too thought I was ugly at your age but it all seemed to turn around when I reached my early 20’s. You could say I was an ugly duckling who turned into a swan. I do have a warning for you though, beauty is only relevant if you believe you’re beautiful. Being pretty and attractive to others doesn’t mean absence of pain. Remember Marilyn was beautiful and she was unhappy in love and life and finally ended hers. There are other things more important and lasting than beauty such as knowledge and wisdom. People are just as attracted to a cheery disposition as they are to physical beauty, work on that and forget about how you look for now. You should get exercise, eat a healthy diet and take care of yourself because you will not magically turn into another person but you can turn into the person you were meant to become.

  261. Jennifer says:

    No one owns your life but you. No one commands your body but you. I highly support the notion of rationally thought out self deliverance; instigated by terminal illness or not. I’d go so far as to say that children deserve that right as well if they are suffering unbearably. The key is “rational”. As people, if we are to codify this with laws, then lets allow rational suicide to those who have demonstrated the mental clarity of a well considered self deliverance and the ability to understand what an end of life decision means on may levels; cognitively, spiritually, morally, ethically and by personally held value… bioethics. That is, to each individual’s subjective circumstance which we must learn to speak about using “critical thinking” and not a one size fits all criteria or generalization, becasue each of us are so utterly complex in respect to any decision we may want to make with end of life. Even though I would personally resent the measure of a law, I nevertheless “get it”… that we must appease society as a whole if we want to make progress in the debate of rational suicide. I would support any rational suicide which has mental health and physician safeguards built in in order for a person to be considered “rational”. If we cannot make that choice for ourselves due to incapacity, then I really hope we have the forethought to plan ahead in our advance care directives for someone we trust to do that for us. It’s too bad we humans are stuck in this quagmire. if you want to die, you should be let to legally die with assistance of those who support you in your beliefs, and to die with DIGNITY and not alone by some horribly violent measure like a handgun.

    • Lucy says:

      You’re words are thoughtful and it also mirrors my position. What I find galling is the way society is willing to take away all the safe guards and assistance people may need to succeed in life but then penalize them if they cannot make it and fall into despair. If you read through the comments you’ll notice how many people feel despondent because of they are too poor, cannot find work, feel isolated. Its tremendously sad because I’m sure half of those people would be eased by aid enough that they wouldn’t feel the need to commit suicide. Poverty and the fear of homelessness are not shallow reasons for wanting to die and we won’t know how many of those people would still consider suicide if they had the material assistance that they need. We have done something so destructive in this country by advancing neoliberal policies that gut our social welfare services and think of the world as either “makers” or “takers”, we’ve created a cold world where there’s little social cohesion and no social contract.

  262. linda says:

    After cancer, I am left with less than half a tongue, barely able to speak, barely able to chew or eat, can not taste anything. Radiation destroyed my teeth and mouth. I have spinal cord damage from radiation that no one knows if it will ever get better, excruciating pain in neck, arms, back. They just give me more morphine. No help at all. I am starving and have no hope. Now they are cutting me off SSDI. My religious tradition says I go to hell if I kill myself, but I can hardly stand this another day. I am already in hell. All I want is to fall asleep and never, ever wake up. I hate everything about my life and I will hate myself forever for submitting to “treatment”. Cancer treatment is a giant lie. There is no point living as a “survivor”. It was excruciating before they cut my tongue off but it’s actually worse pain now knowing it will get worse and worse until I die and no one can help. I just want to find the strength to end this.

    • Miss Hannah says:

      I am so sorry, but you shouldn’t hate yourself, that is just adding negativity, which is the last thing you or anyone needs. Just think of it as lessons and experiences you had to go through in order to grow and evolve as a soul. And now/later/next time, you can use that knowledge to help others! And know you are better for it and others can be too! Most people still think these “treatments” are the right thing to do because they are publicised by a business making a hundred billion a year off everyone’s lives. There has always been cures though, but that isn’t being spread around.. barely, at any rate. That wouldn’t make them any money! WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW IS FIND A HEALER THAT CAN HELP YOU! I’ve seen one cure a horse with a type of cancer hours before death after the doctors gave up (obviously, since they ran out of drugs to prescribe…)

    • Rei says:

      @Miss Hannah Have you actually read her comment correctly? your reply is rather like you’re advising a teenage girl who hates her body but she actually got everything else. there was no negativity in her comment; she was describing a ‘reality’. just like someone else said here; there is no a one size fits all solution here as we as human beings are way much more complex with different aspects of different things we go through since birth date and all the way through life. I am not trying to imply any ‘solution’ neither suggest help, because simply I don’t know enough. what you say certainly could be true, but definitely for different reasons than what you were having in mind and believing in.

    • Hopeless says:

      I empathize with you as I lost my husband to throat cancer that was not caught until it was too late. We didn’t know…he went thru all that radiation and chemo and pain for nothing. He died within 3 months. I have had Cancer and no way will I go thru that barbaric treatment just to make money and making you think you are going to beat it. BS. If your pain is getting worse and worse, can you not ask your dr. for pain patches. They help only to the degree that you can sleep away the day. I know that is not the answer you are looking for and I feel your pain. Have you been given a diagnosis as to life span?

  263. Dave says:

    I don’t mean to sound insincere or cynical, but I find it a little ironic that everyone in this comment section that is a supporter of assisted suicide suffers from suicidal tendencies. Why politically support it when there’s really no use? [Of course, I’m not ADVOCATING suicide, I just think that assisted suicide is a useless movement.]

    • Anne says:

      How about if it’s illegal the fact that family/friends can’t get life insurance – do you know the fees to bury or cremate someone? Or how about the fact that most suicides don’t go right, but an assisted dr. right to die by not taking fluids/eating is usually a lot less painless, and can be monitored so if they change their mind they can with taking the least amount of pain?

    • Lucy says:

      Actually the assisted suicide movement is focused around the terminally ill not those with suicidal tendencies and its a growing movement in developed countries. There are only a few places (Switzerland and Holland I believe) where someone can claim they have a quality of life issue because of depression or mental illness.

    • Lucy says:

      *Addendum* The article is focused on ‘rational suicide’ which is slightly different than assisted suicide. Rational suicide is focused around those who are not terminal but want to end their life for what some consider ‘rational’ reasons as opposed to a symptom of depression which wrongly implies that that depression is temporary

  264. VL says:

    I am 60 years old and have a chronic illnes that makes my life unbearable. I have had a full life and a career – why should I not be able to take my own life?

  265. a human out of a billion says:

    if someone wants to die, let ’em die.

    your life is YOURS.
    it belongs to you so it’s your responsibility.
    you are the master and blacksmith of your own existence.

    only you can decide the value of your life.
    no one can live it for you if you don’t want to.

    that freedom is your privilege, not something to be saved from.
    if you throw yourself away instead to take care of your needs, no one else can really stop you, except your primal will to live.

    they’ve already been corrupted, might as well let them.

    i don’t encourage this at all, though it is their choice and we shouldn’t get in the way.
    ……

    though at the same time, you should be grateful that you’re living life, there are many people who wanted to keep on living, though their wish did not come through.

    ..

    you can debate with me if you want to just hmu
    ig: ilysmjean/ihysmjean

  266. Unknown says:

    With proper guide lines and a mandatory wait period assisted suicide should be a personal choice and a legal option.

    I did not give consent to be born, but now that I’m here it’s MY life.

    I LOVE life, but I don’t love suffering every day because of a genetic illness and severe chronic pain. Unless someone lives in my shoes they should not be able to tell me what is endurable.

    I’m living to please others, if not for the stigma and the pain it would cause my family I would choose to die.

    • allthere says:

      What you said at the end really hits home with me. I come from a very abusive family and although I.don’t physically abuse wife or.children I am so quick to anger that they live in fear of me as if I had always hit them the way my dad did us. I can remember as a boy spending the night with friends and seeing their dad’s, or one whose dad had passed when he was very young and I literally daydreams about go such better my life would have been. I can’t help but now look at my children and be ashamed that I am so very close to what my father was. I weigh their time left, and mine, and I know the statistics about children who have lost a parent and yet I cannot logically say that children would not have a better.chance in this life were I not here as a damaging force. I keep myself alive right now simply out of the recognition of the pain that I would cause to those unfortunate enough to love me, my children who do not know any better, and knowing that as they grow they too will surely wonder how things could have been if only I had not been such a destructive force.

  267. anan says:

    We are all terminally ill; none of us gets out alive. If for me, if life’s pain exceeds its pleasure, it is just rage inducing that someone else should think it there business whether I come or go. I’m successful, have a family, have never suffered from mental illness, but would just rather not be than be. Entirely rational and no ones business but mine. When everything else is stripped away, our life is the only thing that is really ours. But because of some f’d up do-gooder need of people to impose their will on others, one’s family has to find the remains of a shotgun blast rather than just quietly going to sleep. I’ve felt this way for years, just waiting until kids are off on there own, or maybe i;ve just been too much of chicken. we’ll see.

    the typical responses, please please please don’t do it. 1) why would you give a crap and 2) mind your own business

    Open up assisted suicide for whoever wants it.

  268. Minax Allore says:

    I liked this article but did not like how you said “even” people with incurable chronic illness. I am disabled and I am sick of the world telling us suicide prevention is not for us.

  269. Shura says:

    I love you all! Hello! I do too have a severe depression and the idea of suicide make me feel in control of something. But I know I’m not going to do it! Love You! Take care of yourself!

  270. no name please says:

    My husband asked me to allow him to take his life to prevent him from returning to a tortuous life of imprisonment of 10 years for non violent minor drug charge. I had spent years with his PTSD from a prior prison term and had witnessed what it had done to him. He knew he had broken the law but would not return to prison after completing a 4 month drug rehab in another state and had returned a changed man. I honestly could not let him return to that system that had so destroyed his mental health. He had worked so hard to change from deep down and I would not let that system destroy him again. I promised him that I would not stop him and let him choose his death.
    I myself am suffering severe PTSD from not stopping him but could not let him suffer any longer. We had escaped to a third world country to start over. But the US system was going to stop his disability payments since he was a wanted man and he felt we could not survive on my check alone. At the time I felt it was humane. I still feel that way. My only regret is that I didn’t go with him. I had sworn my life to my husband to protect and love him forever. That I didn’t convince him to at least try and survive on my check or find some other option haunts my every living minutes. There was no answer, no solution. In my eyes my only option was to lie down with him and go together because I knew what my life would be without him.
    Two years later, I still feel the same. I know that was my only option free from mental torture. I have been through extensive counseling and they try to convince me that there was nothing else I could do after all that I had done to help him escape. But I live with the truth of knowing that I let him down by not fighting harder, even though I at that time was suffering severely with what to do also. But there was no coming back to the US for us. With my beliefs I failed myself by not going with him.
    Now I am back in the states suffering minute by minute in a world inside my head that no one knows about. My friends and family try to distract me but that is temporary. It always comes back to the same silent moments alone with what I have done….of how I let him down by not gong with him.
    People who do not believe in humane dying do not understand and never will. It is not my place to change anyone’s mind, but only live or not live as I see fit. I am ready to go. There is no other peace for me.
    I now understand what it is like to force someone to live in mental torture.

  271. California says:

    I doubt this site is even monitored, but I truly want to die. I cannot think of one reason to live. I have tried to commit suicide 3 times, and the main reason I’m holding back is fear of surviving again. I am in such mental pain, the thought of physical pain (and living) is unbearable. I do not have pills, or a gun. I do have a suicide bag and helium (I’ve had for months) that I can’t make work. I have BPD, and realize I’ll never have in life what I’ve sought for 54 years. I’m totally alone, and know I’ve never truly been loved, nor cared for, and don’t have the desire to try to re-build my life….again. All I think about is how to die, and all I do is cry. I want to die.

    • Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW says:

      “California,”

      Indeed this site is monitored, although I have been delayed in approving comments. I’m very sorry you’re suffering like this. Please, please, please continue to reach out for help. I presume you’ve received therapy or other help already, since you said you have BPD. Still, please keep trying. A good place to start is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, at 1.800.273.8255 (TALK). I’ve listed other places where you can get help by phone, chat, or email on this site’s Resources page at speakingofsuicide.com/resources/#immediatehelp.

      I hope you will find some relief and hope soon.

    • Beth says:

      California,

      You are not alone. I am 30 and have BPD and it has robbed me of my happiness, my loved ones, and every hope and dream I ever have. I am blamed by everyone.

      I too think of nothing but dying. No stupid suicide hotline would change that.

      Assisted suicide should be legal for us.

    • Gabriel says:

      I know how you feel California. I’m only fourteen years old and I’ve attempted suicide seven different times. I’m just too reckless to get it right… I’ve been forsaken by my family and the friends I used to know. Ever since my BPD hit, no one has wanted to help me except for a few, but of course they didn’t help. No one has. To be honest, I has psychosis as well…

    • Brent Fisher says:

      Obviously don’t kill yourself. It’s turtles all the way down. You are correct in that you will survive again. Scientifically you will be alive with odds one in one. It’s as useful as being in a universe with yourself, a dart, and the vacuum of space. The odds that you can throw the dart away from you and have it hit a major artery and cause you to bleed to death truly impossible. There is no spot for the dart to go. Suicide is a temporary solution to a permanent problem. The odds of being alive no matter what technology or weapons system are brought to bear is 1:1.

      Just that if you kill yourself and it looks like you failed to yourself, there actually is a universe where all your tormenters have found you dead. So don’t kill yourself.

  272. Anonymous says:

    I’m a 15 year old girl and I don’t think I’m worth the oxygen I take up. I’m unlovable. I’ve been used and abused so much I need the pain just to feel anything. I need to die. Because once I die, everyone will forget about me and move on. But I don’t know the best way to do it. Suggestions?

    • Anonymous says:

      just change your routine

    • Anonymous says:

      Love, please don’t hurt yourself, get help any way you can- a relative, a friend, a teacher, a classmate. I have struggled with thoughts of suicide myself but I am recovering and I can tell you, you have a long life to live and there’s so much good to put out in the world. You are 15 and full of potential!

    • Minax Allore says:

      Loved ones don’t forget and move on. The unnatural death of a loved one haunts one and weighs you down for your entire life. Your life matters a lot, you can’t see it when you’re so young. You’re just blooming.

    • Anonymous says:

      Sweetheart. I am a divorced father of a girl I love more than anything…anything on this earth. If I were to lose her, everything would be gone…gone forever. You think no one will remember you or care about you, but you’re wrong. I suspect someone, some heartache, or some trauma has made you feel this way. You might be thinking “if I die, they’ll feel so sorry.” Sadly, they won’t be. The people who have hurt you already showed you they don’t care. It’s a hard, hard reality to face. But I’m here to tell you – there are people out there who genuinely do love you and want you to be in their lives. You are 15. I imagine you have had some really hard times. But please don’t hurt yourself. You are loved, even if you don’t know it, ok?

    • Lucy says:

      No one is “unlovable”, ev