Why You Should Stop Calling Suicide Selfish And Look In The Mirror

Why You Should Stop Calling Suicide Selfish And Look In The Mirror

If your first thought when someone confides in you about taking their own life is yourself, then who really is the selfish one?

*Trigger Warning: Depression, suicide, self-harm.*

With the tragic deaths of musicians such as Chris Cornell and Chester Bennington and the release of Logic's emotional ballad 1-800 , it seems like the reoccurring topic of 2017 is a heartbreaking one; suicide. As someone who's lost good friends, and even almost herself to the same tragedy, this topic hits close to home, which is why it's taken so long for me to talk about.

It's no secret that I've been a Linkin Park fan for years now, so I kept up with the various press releases as they rolled out following Chester's passing. Unfortunately with the press releases came peoples opinions of his death as well, along with people's thoughts on suicide as a whole. Just like following the loss of Robin Williams, there were many people throwing out their thoughts that suicide is selfish or even cowardly.

"They didn't think of anyone but themselves."

"People need to toughen up."

"It's the cowards way out."

"What about their family? What about me?"

I wish these were some things I'd just heard of other people saying about suicide and it's victims, that I had never actually heard them with my own ears but I have. After missing class to attend a funeral for a high school friend who lost their battle with mental illness I heard it in whispered tones when people talked about why I had been gone. When I opened up about my own thoughts in my head when I was at an all-time low, I had it said to my face.

"I'm sorry you feel that way but I can't believe you would be that selfish to even consider that. How would we feel?"

I'm sorry, I thought I was trying to confide in you so I could get help, not feel worse? It's nearly 2018 and it's time to stop. It's time that we all stop calling suicide and those affected by suicidal thoughts selfish. If your first thought when someone confides in you about taking their own life is yourself, then who really is the selfish one?

Yes, suicide is tragic. It's heartbreaking and it's devastating to everyone involved. To feel that low to feel like ending your own life is the only answer is a pain I'd never wish upon my worst enemy. And losing someone you love by their own hand then feeling the soul-crushing guilt of forever wondering "What if?" is another unbearable pain I hope no one ever has to experience.

Yes, suicide affects more than just the one whose life is lost, it affects everyone who loved and cared about them. But that's the thing about depression, your mind plays tricks on you and tells you things that aren't true.

"You're nothing but a burden."

"They deserve better than you."

"They'll move on."

"They'll be happier when you're gone."

It's not that victims aren't thinking of others when they feel that level of low, their brain just tricks them that everyone else is doing them a favor. Suicide victims and victims are not selfish. They're lost, they're hurt, and they deserve love and support. If you can't offer them that, then maybe you're the toxic on in their life.

If you or anyone you know has ever felt like taking your life was your only option left please know you are not alone. You are powerful, you are strong, you are loved and even if I do not know you I pray for your heart and healing each and everyday. God bless, and may you all keep fighting.

If you or someone you know needs help, call 1-800-273-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

You can also text HELLO to 741-741 for free, 24-hour support from the Crisis Text Line.

Outside of the U.S., please visit the International Association for Suicide Prevention for a database of resources.

Cover Image Credit: Variety.com

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I'm Pushing To #StopSoldierSuicide, And You Should Too

Twenty-two a day is 22 too many.

Between February 5 and February 26, 2018, my fraternity, Alpha Delta Phi, is sponsoring a nationwide campaign to advocate, volunteer and fundraise for the veteran's organization Stop Soldier Suicide. The campaign is split into three weeks, with each week having its own national goal for Stop Soldier Suicide.

Stop Soldier Suicide is the first national nonprofit organization that focuses on the prevention of veteran suicide. Veterans are 22% more likely to commit suicide than people who have not served, and the systems in place cannot keep up with the demand for help. So in 2010, Brian Kinsella, Nick Black, and Craig Gridelli founded Stop Soldier Suicide to help deal with the financial stress, soldier-to-civilian transitioning, and offer various mental health services.

Alpha Delta Phi's national campaign benefitting Stop Soldier Suicide takes the form of the Brothers in Arms Challenge. Over the course of 22 days, we lead a national awareness and fundraising challenge between our chapters at various colleges in the country to see who can raise the most money for Stop Soldier Suicide.

Why 22 days? Every day, 22 veterans and 1 active duty soldier take their own lives, a shocking reality of a nationwide epidemic that we intend to help relieve. Donations help provide mental health services, emergency financial aid, housing assistance, therapy, education and veteran bonding programs.

Week 1 is about advocacy, where we focus on engaging with campus personnel and students to raise awareness about what Stop Soldier Suicide is.

Week 2 is about volunteering, where we reach out to our community to work with veterans and any association that wants to help further the cause of helping veterans.

Week 3 is about fundraising, pushing for events to help raise money for the ultimate cause.

Some brothers, like myself, take it upon themselves to do the #BIAChallenge, where they do 22 push-ups a day for 22 days. Because of my connection to weightlifting, I put a personal twist on it and instead do 22 exercises, at 22 reps, for 22 days. The exercises are as follows:

So, what can you do to help? If you want to read more about what Stop Soldier Suicide is, you can find their website here. Additionally, you can always check out my Instagram page to see videos of some of the rep challenges I am doing here

Finally, the link to donate to our fundraising page to directly benefit Stop Soldier Suicide can be found by clicking here. Our goal as a fraternity is to raise enough money to connect each one of our brothers with their own veteran to provide support for an entire year. The Alabama Chapter of the Alpha Delta Phi consistently is one of the best donators in the country and with your help, you can help give back to our veterans.

Manus multae cor unum.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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Even When You Feel Like Your Life Doesn't Matter, It Does

Nothing would be the same without you.
"You can never truly disappear, something will always remain: a kind word you said to a stranger, a kiss for an old lover or papers with your handwriting scattered through time, pieces of you that make up history."
"You shouldn't make anyone feel like they aren't good enough."

Stop and think about this for a minute. Nothing would be the same without you. Your existence matters. You deserve all good things. You being here, right now, makes the world a better place.

If you feel alone, know this, I am rooting for you. You can do this. You are here for a reason, please stick around to see that. We have struggles, some more than others. Don't be afraid to open up and share your thoughts with others. You never know what impact it could have.

You are loved beyond measure. You are special and unique. You have so many reasons to keep living. The world does not define you by any means, nor does your past. Each day is a new day to be exactly who you want to be. Be the person you need.

You matter.

If you need help, do not be afraid to reach out.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: 123rf

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