I think that pretty much everybody has thought about committing suicide at some point in their lives, perhaps at multiple points. Nonetheless, I still get the feeling that I've thought about doing it more often than most other people have. My suicidal thoughts would sometimes creep up on me, usually in response to certain kinds of situations. I think the first time I ever felt that way was back in 5th grade. Things just felt crushingly hopeless and I thought about ending it all.
Whenever things got really bad and I really wanted to end it all, I would inevitably start to wonder: how I would go about doing it? What would be the best way? Rather fortunately, I guess I don't have a very good imagination for those kinds of things. Whichever way I was going to do it, I wanted it to be minimally painful and very quick. Nearly instantaneous, if possible.
A handgun seemed like the most standard way. Not exactly original, but it would do the job. Boom. Dead. Simple, right? But then again, I'd never handled a gun before. I might, like, accidentally blow off my own thumb or something. And let's say I put the gun in my mouth and pulled the trigger? In my mind's eye, I pictured the bullet cleaving neatly through both halves of my brain and making a clean exit wound, leaving me paralyzed on the floor. There I would lay, unable to move, fully conscious as I bled to death for an hour or two while the top of my head was erupting in volcanic levels of searing pain the whole while. Yeesh, forget about that!
Oddly, another thing that dissuaded me from committing suicide was the fact that I have extremely bad hand writing. If I were to write a suicide note, no one would be able to read it. How embarrassing would that be? In my imagination, I envisioned the county coroner standing in my apartment over my dead body. He'd pick up my blood-stained note and peer at it all squinty-eyed. He'd turn it around a few times, trying to figure out which way was up.
"What the hell is this?" He'd grumble. "Is this in Hebrew?"
Then he'd fax it to some forensic specialist in Israel who'd fax back: "No, it's just sloppy English. Don't waste my time with this crap."
So, yeah, that's how I imagined my suicide would look. It just didn't seem like a very good idea. Really though, what eventually convinced me to not kill myself was the understanding that, no matter how bad life seemed at the time, suicide would be a permanent solution to what might turn out to be a temporary problem. There were so many things that I really wanted to do in life, it just seemed like a bad idea to not be able to do them.
Suicide is really a big killer. Something needs to be done on a society-wide level. But here's the thing about suicide... here is the hard implacable fact that nobody wants to talk about in a serious, penetrating, honest way - suicide is a killer for a fuck-ton of men. Not women, men. And in reaction to that fact? Society offers a collective yawn.
Why is that? No, seriously, why is that?
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