Understanding suicide

Someone somewhere

Posted by kvdl on October 26, 2008

Someone some where on the Internet said a simple sentence concerning the right to die by suicide, that has stuck in my mind. They explained that It was not about wishing to die but wishing to live voluntarily!

In five years of working with suicidal people I have often come across this sentiment. I recently sat in a town center with a recovering heroin addict. Far from her past life she laughingly showed me a number of scars left from suicide attempts. Now, however, she says that what kept her alive through the years was the knowledge that she could end her life if things got too bad.

This raises an issue in wishing to help suicidal people do we have the right to deny them the right to self determination? 

In our rush to save lives,to prevent the actual death, do we fail to deal with the psychache that leads to death by suicide?

Statistics on self inflicted deaths pail in significance when measured against suicide attempts,the millions who felt enough  emotional pain to wish they were dead. Is this not where true suicide prevention lies?


4 Responses to “Someone somewhere”

  1. justvonna said

    This is a very hard subject for a mother of a young adult child that died from many years of alcohol addiction that lead to his addiction of drugs as well.

    I do believe he had thoughts many times, he was a very intelligent young man with a high intelligence level. I do not believe my son died by the sword so to speak.

    His addiction was predisposed through his genes, as he went through many rehabs as well as doctors to get well. The ultimate diagnose was depression. Medication dose and mixture is an individual fit, just like a pair of good pair of blue jeans, but it is not an exact science.

    His path before his passing was one of good measure, as I witnessed was getting better. Through thearpy and the correct medications. But alas, as I have not mentioned the court system ~ made a rash decision in my opinion as this brought him into another spiral.

    Within two weeks of the decision, he made a choice to do drugs again. The coroner found in his system pure heroin.

    ~death by suicide I think not, death laced with a lethal dose given to him by another ended his journey here on earth~

    Everyone has a choice in life and it is this choice that determines their ultimate outcome.

  2. Thank you both for sharing so personally.

    I particularly like kvdl’s “psychache” (I hope you don’t mind if I use it in the future). It is a fitting neologism for what you both write about.

  3. kvdl said

    To justvonna
    I wish you peace and can only imagine your suffering.I am in recovery from alcohol and heroin addiction. I too went on to have a psychiatric diagnoses,One Of the lucky ones, I am now well.I have attempted suicide and often wished to die when I was In addiction.I Have gone on to work in the field of suicide intervention and addiction counseling.I was instrumental in getting the girl I mentioned in the post from active heroin addiction to feeling well enough to laugh at her past life.
    Like your son I have choices But in addiction I had no choice except the original choice to take heroin in the first place.
    Maintaining that freedom is a daily task that could be lost given a significant setback such as a court case. I probably have a genetic predisposition and the threat of succombing to addiction will always be with me.Sadly your son lost the fight and the world lost another child.
    Wishing you peace and understanding in your loss.
    Blog author

  4. justvonna said

    Dear kvdl ~

    ~ I say thank you for taking the time to wish me peace. I am glad you survived.
    Somehow you found me on the internet – may both of our new journeys in life bring back the life of everyone who may hear us speak ~

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