Editorial: Suicide – The Sorrowful Reality

SUICIDE PREVENTION LIFELINE -- Systems are available 24/7 to anyone seeking help.

SUICIDE PREVENTION LIFELINE — Systems are available 24/7 to anyone seeking help.

“Every 40 seconds, someone dies by suicide. Every 41 seconds, someone’s left to make sense of it,” wrote International Business Times.

Suicide… Many people cringe at the mention of Suicide. When one chooses to take their own life, not only are they affected, but also everyone around them.

In this day and time, there are more issues than there used to be. More and more people each day are put on various types of medications with hopes to drive their pain away. On top of that, many children, teens, and even adults are pushed closer to an edge that they will not be able to climb back up from.

The topic of suicide hits close to home for many Central students due to the recent loss of a former Central Pounder, Destanie Roach. On Sunday, October 5, 2014, Central said goodbye to one of our own. The tragedy of suicide struck not only Destanie and her family, but clung to each and every student. Destanie has been dearly missed and opened the eyes of many.

In 2012, there were 39,518 deaths by suicide in the United States. That means there were 39, 518 people who felt as though they were not good enough to continue, and while many claim to understand it, nobody ever truly will. Some doctors and psychologists have labeled being suicidal as a chemical imbalance, something that is not necessarily working correctly in the brain. It has also been said that suicide is preventable and can be caused by a severe illness and extreme psychological anguish. Meanwhile, those who attempt and/or succeed view it as a way out, an escape.

“My opinion on suicide may be different than most people, because I think I understand mental illness more than most. I’m not sure if I can fully understand the thought process someone goes through to knowingly kill themselves… However, I don’t think anyone can truly ’empathize’ with an individual unless they have tried to kill themselves or [have] had suicidal thoughts,” explained Central Psychology teacher Lauren Thomas.

Thomas also added that her psychological perspective has given her a unique view on the topic.

“Risk factors vary with age, gender, or ethnic group. They may occur in combination over time. Some important risk factors are depression and other mental disorders, substance abuse, prior suicide attempt, family history of suicide, abuse, incarceration, and/or exposure to suicidal behaviors of others, such as family members or peers… The only specific psychological outlook I have that pertains to mental illness is seek help, professional help.”

It is estimated that over half of Americans believe that under any circumstances, suicide is wrong. Others think that a doctor can simply prescribe a pill to cure it, while some see it as a tragic result of a disease that took one’s life, not a lack of character or morality.

Even though suicide’s definition depends on who is asked, a high school student’s outlook differed from that of any other. Hali Thomas, another Central student, shared her opinion on suicide with simplicity yet meaningfulness. She stated, “Empty.”

No matter how many ways it is perceived, suicide is never an answer. It is not going to take a specific person’s pain away; the pain will not dissipate and then never return. Instead, it will be dispersed and spread over a humongous group of people. For that reason, many people deem suicide as selfish… but is that really the selfish part?

“I don’t think it’s selfish. It’s selfish that people are more concerned about them getting hurt, rather than who’s actually hurting, but I do think that it hurts a lot of people. It’s unfair more than it is selfish,” stated Emily Brandon, a student at Central High School and a strong supporter of suicide prevention.

“Depression and loneliness,” described Chloe Nabors, a high school student who lost a very close friend to suicide this year. “It’s senseless.”

Suicide generally branches off from a dreadful case of depression, which is the strongest risk factor for this unruly beast; of the nearly 40,000 lost each year, many never seek help. They often suffer silently until it’s far too late. Many other causes that often lead to suicide are eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety disorders, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and abuse (verbal, sexual, and/or physical). Unfortunately, those are only a few of many.

Help is available for those in need. There are a number of organizations that are putting in countless hours to lower suicide rates in the United States, such as The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. They are available 24 hours a day and their number is 1-800-273-8255.