We are born with the ability to take our own lives. Each year a million people make that choice. Even in societies where suicide is illegal or taboo, people still kill themselves.
For many people who feel suicidal, there seems to be no other way out. Death describes their world at that moment and the strength of their suicidal feelings should not be under-estimated they are real and powerful and immediate. There are no magic cures.
But it is also true that:
- Suicide is often a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
- When we are depressed, we tend to see things through the very narrow perspective of the present moment. A week or a month later, things may look completely different.
- Most people who once thought about killing themselves are now glad to be alive. They say they didnt want to end their lives they just wanted to stop the pain.
The most important step is to talk to someone. People who feel suicidal should not try to cope alone. They should seek help NOW.
- Talk to family or friends. Just talking to a family member or a friend or a colleague can bring huge relief.
- Talk to a befriender. Some people cannot talk to family or friends. Some find it easier to talk to a stranger. There are befriending centers all over the world, with volunteers who have been trained to listen. If calling is too difficult, the person can send an email.
- Talk to a doctor. If someone is going through a longer period of feeling low or suicidal, he or she may be suffering from clinical depression. This is a medical condition caused by a chemical imbalance, and can usually be treated by a doctor through the prescription of drugs and/or a referral to therapy.
Time is an important factor in moving on, but what happens in that time also matters. When someone is feeling suicidal, they should talk about their feelings immediately.