Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Teenage Suicide: Don't Do It.

Okay, I am about to get real serious here for a minute.

I've been thinking a lot about the recent "epidemic" of teens killing themselves. The bullying, the prejudice against gays. It turns my stomach.

But, I think it's important to remember something else about all this. Suicide is often a product of having depression or mental illness. Not always, but most of the time. Yet, it's hardly ever mentioned. I think that's a mistake.

I, at one time, viewed suicide as despicable, disgusting and it completely flabbergasted me. "Why on Earth would you EVER want to do that?!" was my recurring thought. I viewed it as being a selfish act and it held no logic for me. After all, tomorrow is another day, right?
I had a family member who was "suicidal" for several years and I watched him spiral. And, I couldn't say or do anything to help him. I also had a cousin that did commit suicide, and I was always completely dumbfounded on what made them feel those feelings. I couldn't relate.

Until....my mid-late 20s.

All of a sudden, I got it. I understood how a person could have those thoughts and even, follow through. And it scared the bejezus outta me. I am a lifelong "chronic depressive." I, like many many many others out there suffer from this debilitating condition and have absolutely no control over it. The only things I can do are think positive, take one thing (or day) at a time and medicate myself (if you believe in it.) I do. The most important thing to remember is that depression is an illness. It can't be "snapped out of" or "fixed" overnight. And frankly, I am sick and tired of all the prejudice that people have. You need to e-d-u-c-a-t-e yourself before you judge.

I can't tell you how heart-breaking it is to watch all these events going on lately. These kids have a problem no one can even imagine or comprehend, unless you yourself have been there. It is not a fun place to be. I speak from experience. While most of your friends, family or even, acquaintances will say "Oh, things will better" "Don't worry"...."Everything will be OK"...these things are not recognizable to someone in the depths of a depression.

My biggest motivator for entering the psychology/social work field stems from my empathy and drive to help these people, first and foremost. I think that the "mental" community gets overlooked so often and it's completely unfair and wrong.

If you care about someone, if you have a human bone in your body and your heart is not made of ice, please please, I beg of you...be understanding. Be a friend. Be there, if you can.

3 comments:

Olive Owl said...

Love you, Sweetie Poo!

You're stronger than you know. Berlyn's lucky to have such a kind, loving, smart & determined mama.

GirleeCat said...

Love this post! Really raw, really introspective & really relevant to the recent wave of teen suicides. Depression is dark and unpredictable at times, so it's imprtant people understand they're not alone. I hear you and I soooo feel you on this one!! BRAVO!!!

Blondie said...

It makes me so sad that people can't watch out for another. Teaching high school is tough sometimes because it kills me to watch kids be mean to each other. One of the main reasons I became a high school teacher is to help avoid that terrible spiral they get caught up in talking about and abusing each other.

I suffered from a bout of depression in my twenties and it scared me to death. I am a girl who gets up every day looking forward to something as simple as lunch, but I have my times that I get down and it's not fun.

All I can say is you have a huge support system Sarah honey. I can't believe how much I feel like we are friends, even though we haven't yet met in person! You are stronger than most everyone I know girl and that's the truth! Kori xoxo