I Want You to Want to Live
The rate of suicide is on the rise worldwide in all age categories. It affects all ethnicities, cultures and religions.
It is bias-free.
It is a last resort, a desperate attempt to quell the never-ending and relentless pain that monopolizes your mind. It has become the only feasible way to rid yourself of the burdensome weight that has dragged you to this level of despair.
That is how I’ve felt anyway, the countless number of times I have and do fall into the darkness. And because I can empathize, take a minute to read this letter to you.
If you are reading this there is a small piece of you that wants to hold on.
I am so proud of you for reaching out, even if you have done so without words. You have kindly given me a few minutes of your time, and I do appreciate that.
I want you to live.
I want you to want to live.
I won’t feed you some bullshit like it’s all going to be OK with time because it may not be, and it may not turn out as you wish, but you will never know if you don’t stick around to find out.
I will instead tell you I am here with you. Let’s take this a minute at a time.
I will remind you that although I don’t know what tomorrow will bring, I will be by your side to find out.
You are so important.
I won’t make you feel selfish by telling you to stick around for your family or friends, because I know you feel that leaving would not only end your burden, but theirs as well.
I will tell you someone loves you despite how you feel inside. I will remind you that you are not and never will be a burden. You may not see or even hear it, but someone out there values your life; I value your life. I don’t know you, but I do care because I can empathize with your pain; I feel it myself.
You are incredibly strong.
I won’t ever tell you that you are being dramatic and don’t really want to die.
I will instead be here to listen and validate your feelings because they are as significant as you are.
I am so proud of you for still staying with me.
I won’t ever tell you things could be worse or that other people have it worse than you and don’t want to die.
I will acknowledge your despair and lack of hope. I will never compare your pain to another’s. It would be like observing two gunshot wounds, one in the chest and one in the leg. Yes, it is worse to get shot in the chest, but it does not take away the pain of being shot in the leg.
You are beautiful.
I won’t use the old adage “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.”
I will say that your problems might not be temporary, but I will be with you and help you to find a coping mechanism that works for you. I will tell you suicide is simply not a solution.
I won’t shove the ideas of therapy or medication down your throat as that will not help at the moment.
I will ask some of the most important words of all: How can I help?”
I will provide you with a suicide hotline (1-800-273-8255 or text the word “start” to 741-741.)
You are a warrior.
Your track record of making it through trauma, heartbreak and devastation is 100 percent. Despite the rocks life has thrown at you, you have emerged with scars and grit. You have proven wrong those who expected you not to make it, those who gave up on you long before you gave up on yourself.
You are amazing.
You have a purpose in this life, whether you realize it at this point or not. Your book has so many chapters to be written. You are needed, your voice and your story are essential for someone, be it a stranger or a friend.
You are your own hero. You have done what you think you cannot do. You have looked death in the face, stared it down and walked away having won another battle in your war.
If you are still reading this, I am incredibly proud of you for stopping what you were doing and giving me a few moments of your precious time. Just reading this is the beginning… you have extended your arm, you just have to unclench your fist. I implore you to keep this conversation going, be it with a hotline, a friend or family member, or even me by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
You have taken the first step; let’s make it to the second together.
You are loved.
Image via Thinkstock