What would they say?

I'm not suicidal. I don't plot my death. I suppose I haven't reached that point — thankfully. I've seen the pain that suicide causes loved ones left behind. I could never do that to my family. But in a twisted mindset that I don't fully understand, I do have a certain empathy for those that have been so desperate for relief, they chose to take matters in their own hands and end it once and for all.

I once saw snippets of a documentary where the film makers set up several cameras 24/7 focused on the Golden Gate Bridge. The filming lasted an entire year. In that year they documented two dozen suicide jumps and several attempts. I couldn't watch the whole thing. For some reason though I had a visceral understanding of why these people made that final choice of their lives.

Sometimes I experience fleeting thoughts of what the end could be like, often times wishing my life would be cut short so as to be spared any more heartache. Would I feel warmth and relief? Would there be the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel? Would I be punished eternally for committing the sin of suicide? What would people say about me? Would it really matter in the Grand Scheme?

As I continue to tailspin, I have fears of what this continued hell will do to me in the long-term. The toll it takes can easily make you do things you'd never think of doing because of desperation. Of late, I've had fleeting realizations that I'm losing my will to live. This does not mean I'm suicidal. I'm just having a great deal of trouble caring anymore. I hope I won't reach a point where I'll have no option left but to face that awful, final choice.


  1. Hi Forlorn,
    I really understand what you are saying, and I've also felt empathy for those who just felt that they couldn't take it anymore and decided to end it all.

    I'm not suicidal either, but I have also thought it might be nice for it all to be over sometimes. The depression. The anxiety. The pain. I have thought about that many times, especially over the last year or so. Sometimes life seems like a relentless slog, and an exercise in futility.

    But it isn't. Yes, I have my bad days, my bad weeks, and hell, even my bad months. But there are good days too. There are moments of joy and happiness that make the struggle worthwhile. The kindness of friends. The taste of good food. The beauty of nature. The feeling after exercise. Reading a good book. And karaoke. Man, I love karaoke.

    I think we only get one shot at life, and it will end in due course. To hasten it ourselves, knowing the pain it will cause to those close to us, is to make a decision to hurt them. And we don't lose the responsibility for our decisions just because we are in pain. Life is hard, and we must endure. Look for that next remedy. Take a run around the neighborhood. Sing in the shower.

    Fighting depression is a battle that doesn't seem to end. But that does not mean we should lose hope because of that. But we should be realistic, and learn from each day, each low period, each negative thought.

    Keep fighting man. It is worth it.


  2. Funny how you mention having bad days and good days. All my days are clones of the previous. I have not experienced joy or happiness since I was a child. I realize that sounds extreme and unrealistic but it's the case for me. Yes, I can experience the taste of good food or drink, "enjoy" a good movie or even chuckle at a decent joke, but the depression is ever present even during those moments. Good food does not lift the depression. I wish I could eat my way out of it.

  3. It is interesting how you say you haven't experienced joy or happiness since you were a child. Recently I was talking to my mother and she told me that I seemed a lot happier until I started to hit puberty. I have had both good times and bad times since then, but I wonder how many others out there experience the same change.

    This may be an obvious suggestion, but have you tried exercise? I like jogging and hiking, and although they are certainly not cure-alls, for me they do have some effect. I try to run a few times a week. Sometimes I feel great afterwards, sometimes, I just feel tired. But having worked up a sweat seems to help regardless.

  4. I have had an exercise routine for over 20 years. I jog, lift weights, use circuit machines and stretch. It's not the most rigorous routine in the world but I'm convinced it's prevented me from sinking lower than I am. Unfortunately it falls short of lifting the depression. I realize the importance and value of exercise though it's been getting progressively tougher to keep up over the years. There are times I'll go to the gym and completely poop out mentally and physically after only 10 minutes. Then I'll wonder why I even bothered.

  5. Yes, I see. Even if exercise isn't making us happy, it does help raise us up from the depths a little. Perversely, it can also become a cause of depression too, like you imply in your last comment.

    In my case, when jogging I sometimes push myself too much, and then can't exercise properly until I recover, which doesn't help my state of mind much. Depression is an ingenious little devil, it can use anything to bring us down, even the things we try to use to fight it.

    This isn't the most cheerful of thoughts, but sometimes it seems like fighting depression is a question of keeping it at bay rather than beating it. Given that, maybe we need to rethink what we should be satisfied with. I've realized that my past view that somehow I would beat this and be completely done with it was naive. At the moment, I am resigned to the fact that each day is and will remain a struggle.

    That may or may not change in the future, but that is the reality for now. And I'm prepared to fight as long and as hard as it is necessary.