Recently I've noticed a growing trend where people refer to suicide as being a "bad decision". This is something I want to address because it really, truly bothers me.
Anyone who attempts suicide, whether they succeed or not, is not making a decision. Why? Because in that dark place, there are no alternatives other than continuing to live with the pain they are feeling in that moment. They can't see things getting any better. I know this because I've been there.
Now, let's look at the people who have survived suicide attempts. There's an amazing TEDx talk from someone who jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge and miraculously, he survived. He's gone on to help people who feel like suicide is their only reasonable option.
Let's stop shaming people who consider suicide, attempt suicide, and even succeed in suicide. The shame only contributes to stigma, which is the reason, I believe, that suicide is so prevalent in society in the first place. Untreated depression is the leading cause of suicide. Suicide is more prevalent in men than in women. It doesn't take rocket science to work out why this is the case. We live in a "man up" culture. We live in a world where women's emotions are reduced to "PMS" / "PMT".
When people are hell-bent on trivialising everything that you're feeling, why would you ask for help?
So rather than saying that people who attempt suicide are simply making a "bad decision" as though they had one too many drinks at the bar last night, how about we start looking people right in the eye and asking how they are? How about instead of asking in passing with no genuine interest and nodding when they say "fine", we slow down and stop to find out how they really are?
Shaming is not the way forward, not in any context. I think we honestly ought to be ashamed of ourselves because we talk about "society" being to blame for everything that's wrong in this world, but we seem to forget that we are a part of the big bad society we all hold in such disregard. We are society, and if we're unhappy with society, it's down to us to change it.