Acknowledgement

     A friend once asked me why people killed themselves. She said that she knew all of her friends and would know if they were sad, upset, or thinking of suicide. It took me a little while to answer her… Our problem as people is that we only see what we want to in other people. We are under the impression that everyone walks, talks, thinks and acts the same as we do, but that is far from the truth and somewhere deep inside, we don’t want to accept that. We’re only focused on how we would react to a ‘sad’ thought, to a ‘bad’ day, to losing a loved one, to feeling alone and depressed and lost, to losing a job, to any other stress we may go through, that we forget that other people are not us. We even get upset, righteous, indignant, and sometimes downright hurtful when someone tells us that they think about suicide constantly. What is it that we say to them, again? “You have such a nice house, though.” “Your parents have always been so good to you, though.” “What do you mean you feel alone? You have like a ton of friends.” “Your job isn’t great, but at least you have one, right?” “Have you ever tried not thinking about it?” “How can you be depressed? I just saw you smile.” “But you have kids. Don’t they fix your sadness?” We’re so busy trying to find blame, trying to make it easier for ourselves that we don’t hear the screams and cries for help… We know the public mask of the people around us and that makes us happy. We know how to say ‘I’m here for you’ but not how to truly be there. We’re content with all of it because it’s easier to stay in your own world where you know all of their favorite things and hang out together, than it is to hear them say they’re in pain and admit that you didn’t see it because it would mean you had to go deeper into someone else’s world. I told her that that’s the funny thing about depression and suicide; we’re always focused on who someone used to be and not on who they are now, and by the time we realize they were screaming for us to help them, we’re crying by their gravestone.

      Acknowledging that people can change, that even the people you’ve known your entire life can change, is the first step to letting them know that they can count on you. When someone opens up and says they’ve been feeling this way for years, acknowledge their words and feelings, do not recount the times you assumed they were fine. They’ve opened their world to you, please don’t take that for granted and help them.

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Opening Up

     When someone opens up to you; tells you that they feel like they’re lost, useless, deformed, etc, why are they dismissed? They trust in you enough to lay bare secrets and scars and get torn down even more. They’re lonely, they feel forgotten, they need someone, and they find you. Don’t turn them away. ‘You’ll get over it,’ ‘Someone’s got it worse,’ ‘You’re so dramatic,’ ‘Not this again,’ are just a few ways to ensure they’ll never open up to you again. And why should they? You’ve basically done what every other person has done after you claimed you were different. They went to someone who told them that, no matter what, they would be there for them, wouldn’t let them be alone, would encourage them, would be there to talk to… You used to talk all the time, they’d tell you every good idea or trouble they had, and suddenly they stopped. They seem different since they told you what was going on in their mind; more distant and sad. Trying to come back to life and continue living is difficult when you’re alone and even more so when the person you love and trust kicks you farther down.

     We’re all in this together. Somehow we have to find a way to lift each other up. We have to stop dismissing the lost and forlorn because we are uncomfortable or don’t understand. If you’re unsure what to do there are places to go that can help your loved ones and help you reach them. Do not turn away someone who came to you under the belief that you were to be trusted and would help guide them out of the dark; you may be all there is keeping them alive.

Suicidal Revival

 

Another breath leads to another day,

Another chance to end it in another way.

Day by day they haunt the streets,

Performing the day’s normality’s.

They face the world with practiced smiles,

While inside they’re miles away in their own desert isle.

But truth can’t hide in vacant eyes,

A barren landscape of untold lies.

When our day ends,

Their nightmare begins.

A once cotton haven so comforting and warm,

Has become a side-less coffin where lost souls mourn.

In the dusk and dark their fears reside,

Down covered fangs come to eat them alive.

Family and friends beg and plead,

“One more night, just hold on, please.”

They ask the everyday heroes constantly busy,

“Is there anyone out there who can save me?”

One more night one more day one more sun one more moon,

Begging the Savior of Sinners to end it soon.

They try and try to fake a lie,

Find a way to come alive.

They reach for the hand of the Chosen One,

Trying to cease what had already begun.

From the damned and the broken,

And the tried and the trodden,

Come voices the world has forgotten,

So fragile and broken,

Words scorned and stricken,

With wrists slit and souls shaken,

They’re taken in with one simple question,

From someone who cared enough to stay beside them,

In their self-made dungeon,

“My little slain souls lost in exile,

Once so bright and amazingly vital,

Will you come take my hand my suicidal revival?”