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flubbernugget

Thoughts on Suicide

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Obviously, it happens far too often, but it brings forth a question that's been bugging me for a while: if an individual wants no longer desires to live, who are we to try and convince them otherwise? Yes, there are cases where individuals are going through a tough time, and it is easy to see as an outsider that suicide is not the answer. But others are in unfortunate situations that may never get better with any reasonable amount of time or effort. If we cannot feel what they feel, can we really understand the pain, physically or mentally, that they are going through? Do we really know whether or not life will get better for them, especially if they are prone to an illness causing agony no medicine can truly alleviate? Often, the suicidal are seen as selfish, because of the pain taking their life would inflict upon others. But are we not selfish for promoting the continuation of their pain?

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flubbernugget said:

Obviously, it happens far too often, but it brings forth a question that's been bugging me for a while: if an individual wants no longer desires to live, who are we to try and convince them otherwise? Yes, there are cases where individuals are going through a tough time, and it is easy to see as an outsider that suicide is not the answer. But others are in unfortunate situations that may never get better with any reasonable amount of time or effort. If we cannot feel what they feel, can we really understand the pain, physically or mentally, that they are going through? Do we really know whether or not life will get better for them, especially if they are prone to an illness causing agony no medicine can truly alleviate?


I think we should make a distinction between suicide and euthanasia. As I see it, a suicide is some kind of "one-man decision", where the "victim" often acts by him/herself, without consulting anyone, whereas euthanasia implies more like a "consensus", which I think is the main reason euthanasia is legalized/not-penalized in some countries/regions, while suicide is considered a crime virtually everywhere. I mean, the popular opinion seems to be that a suicidal person hasn't really tried hard to solve his own issues and decide to take the "easy way out":

flubbernugget said:

Often, the suicidal are seen as selfish, because of the pain taking their life would inflict upon others. But are we not selfish for promoting the continuation of their pain?


...while euthanasia implies that basically every person around the victim has tried his best to help, but an "optimal" outcome is not likely, so they may decide to end those people's suffering, which I think is understandable (I don't know if justifiable), even if sometimes it may seem a little "rushed".

Now, two things:

-The vast majority of people who is in favor of decriminalizing (at least as far as I can see) euthanasia/suicide, often give arguments in the vein of self-determination, freedom, etc.
-People who aren't in favor of that, often cite religious or moral "arguments": it's immoral, unethical, only God can take away what God gives, etc.
-Suicide is often seen as more "abrupt" or "sudden": people around doesn't generally expect it, while euthanasia is something often more gradual (i.e., instead shooting or hanging the terminally ill patient, doctors and family try to minimize suffering gradually, even when it is evident that a sudden death may be more "painless").

Anyway, I really can't add much more for now. It's a really interesting question, but I'll have to think about it.

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I think it depends on the status of a person. If you're a father and a husband it is more or less your duty to take care of the family. If you commit suicide in such a situation that's downright selfish.

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But others are in unfortunate situations that may never get better with any reasonable amount of time or effort.


To a desperate person, sometimes waiting a few hours or having a phone call is too much. Yet if you give them that time and effort, most will change their perception. Suicides due to unavoidable problems are the exception rather than the norm.

Live and let live only works so far, if you consider temporary insanity or even human feelings in general. We are not creatures of reason, and indeed, most suicides are emotional in nature rather than a cold, calculated process.

Add to that most suicide attempts, much more numerous than actual suicides, are pleas for help and not actual desire to die. How do you know the difference beforehand? You don't.

This is why the first recommended course of action for people with suicidal thoughts or around people with suicidal thoughts is to talk. Most people are missing a truly compassionate ear; and even those who are more serious about suicide, who in their inner self day after day see no other way to escape their problems, change their mind once those thoughts are voiced and shared.

Morally speaking, I have no qualms with the idea of suicide; but to blindly condone it in general is not a practical position.

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Big question here, but there's my thoughts:

If a person is terminally ill with little-to-no-chance of a cure, then it really is up to them. Nobody can deny them the right to keep fighting an illness in the hope they'll make a recovery, but I feel like that is a textbook case of dying to avoid further suffering. "Quitting whilst you're ahead", if you will. I know if I was on a decline (slow or rapid) I'd want to get my affairs in order when I was still capable and do with the time what I could, but as soon as the pain or debilitation gets too much, I'd be looking for a way out ASAP.


When life suddenly goes wrong (financial crashes, for example) and people suddenly have all they ever worked for disappear in the blink of an eye, it usually pays not to be under a high-rise office building. Or relying on trains. I know at one point around 2010 I couldn't travel through London for a month or two without a delay due to "an incident on the line", which invariably meant somebody had jumped in front of a train. Instant reaction there is to curse their name (the words "selfish cunt" tend to get bandied about in a London station when suicide is slowing you down) and I personally think taking such a messy approach is inconsiderate. Yes, kill yourself if you really think it's all over, but do try and minimise the fall out. I know the "correct" advice is that this is when you rely on those close to you for comfort and the chance to get back on your feet, but maybe they don't have that or it's an irrational decision. I myself would probably be prone to throwing my life away if something suitably devastating happened.


Chronic depression is the thorniest one, in my book. This is where people deal with it every day and feel like it'll never go away. There's therapy, family, maybe friends, but who says it actually helps? This tends to be the case where a cry for help comes in. I think I read when of those stupid motivational posters that said something like "Attempting suicide isn't being weak - it's having been strong for too long. Talk to somebody before it's too late" or something along those lines. It probably is something like that. This is the one where people need to seek help and others need to keep an eye out... Doesn't really happen, a lot of the time. I'm guilty of having the odd depressed outburst and then trying to brush off the advice from people who care. I kind of want to wallow in it, let it out and then move on. Probably not healthy, but I've been fed the idea that letting these things out is better than hiding it, as I'm sure many others have.


My personal approach to suicide in general is that I'm a judgemental arsehole, so when other people do it I'll probably make a snap judgement based on what little I know at the tine (swearing about it at the train station, or whatever). However, when I feel like I've had my peak and my life is in an irretrievable decline due to age, fitness, health or circumstance, I'll be quitting whilst I'm ahead. If anybody is stupid enough to depend on me in the long term, they'll also know that's my opinion on it.

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Take more vitamin D. A lot more. It is usually the basis for anti-depressants. Taking overdoses of vitamin D has helped my friends when prescriptions haven't. Exercise also helps, so does eating right in general.

I have been the therapist for all of my depressed friends throughout my life. I just can't do it anymore. I can't let them weigh me down, especially the friends that REALLY want to be depressed, that will just fight you on every positive thing you say. Eventually, I saw those overly depressed people just want to be depressed even when someone reaches out to them.

My gf is a councilor for a private suicide hospital. She's deep into teens wanting suicide. It drains her every day.

I remember being out with a girlfriend meeting 6 of her friends for the first time. She kept getting texts all night from her army friend stuck on a base. He was suicidal and just kept texting. I told her he's on an army base, they have help there. I think since she was a hot blonde, that's why she was getting his texts.

After a while, I called suicide weak. All 6 of her friends defended suicide saying its the strongest you can be to kill yourself! What? Fuck that. Strength is sticking around for years and decades to come to suffer through life no matter how shitty it is.

Turns out that bitch's 6 friends and her.... they had all attempted suicide at some point. She was a mother of twins when she tried. Well they must've fucking failed. Strongest you can be, yet not strong enough to succeed. That was the last day I spoke with her.

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Zed said:

...while euthanasia implies that basically every person around the victim has tried his best to help, but an "optimal" outcome is not likely, so they may decide to end those people's suffering, which I think is understandable (I don't know if justifiable), even if sometimes it may seem a little "rushed".


I feel as though euthanasia also implies that the pain is physical and not mental. If someone was in constant unbearable pain due to depression, schizophrenia, drug addiction, or some other ailment of the mind, would a consultation on euthanasia be as sympathetic as that of an amputee, for example? I also feel that even some issues like like severely pinched nerves wouldn't get the sympathy they deserve. But at the same time, how detrimental could it be to overestimate one's pain? How does individual pain tolerance tie into this?

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Mr. Freeze said:

Can't wait for this thread to fill up with the "Suicide is only for cowards!" toughguys.


Dead men don't tell stories of how awesome suicide is.

There are always mercy deaths and mercy suicides >> http://www.doomworld.com/vb/everything-else/67055-endangered-black-rhino-hunter-becomes-the-hunted/

But if you have cancer and suicide or a tumor and suicide, you can't still have a full life of making meth or capturing victims and making them suffer to save themselves.

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This is a question of self-ownership. Does someone else own you? If not, then suicide is a morally neutral act, case closed. People who make suicide out to be a selfish act are speaking with a false sense of entitlement. Maybe this can be forgiven if they're grief stricken, but not if they're just some schmuck advocating collectivism.

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Ignore the "cure" for suicide, focus on the cause. In 90% of cases it is the cultural sickness of systematically institutionalizing unfortunate inductees to the human population in industrial assembly line brain vats, where authorities can guide them into the most manipulable positions while they are innocent defenseless and impressionable, and where industry can feed off of them by trading 'antichrist superstar' cds and pogs for their lunch money, horizontal social sickess with mandatory bully socializing, vertical social sickness with mandatory pedophile teachers involuntarily adopting the entire populations children/future tax cattle. The illuminati purposely tweaks the sprinklers of all high schools so they turn outward towards the sidewalk, so the school literally pees on you. What a facade of neatly trimmed hedges and mowed lawns and massive taxpayer force funded building architecture to trick you into thinking it has the slightest bit of legitimacy. This is where the kids quickly realize they belong to a species plagued by an organized parasitic memeplex of mental sickness. This is a systematic soul removing machine, a prisoner training institution, and anyone who commits suicide was really indirectly murdered. Its time to give up on humanity and let the next species evolve. Maybe octopi will do better.

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AndrewB said:

People who make suicide out to be a selfish act are speaking with a false sense of entitlement.


So if you take the RESPONSIBILITY of starting your own family, then go "screw that" and commit suicide, you shouldn't be considered selfish?

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Patrol1985 said:

So if you take the RESPONSIBILITY of starting your own family, then go "screw that" and commit suicide, you shouldn't be considered selfish?

Not necessarily, no. Depends entirely on the circumstances and the individual's state of mind.

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Suicide is a very blurry topic. If you think in Kantian terms, it is not considered as a morally good action, even if the person is suffering (if everyone did it, the human race would cease to exist, contradicting the idea of nature's law for example). So it would be considered a very conditional situation. It is a case of self owner ship here as AndrewB says but ideally I would say the person would need to be clearly rational to appropriately decide to commit suicide but again it's just that, idealism.

A good Australian poem I read recently and liked touches on the topic quite effectively: http://www.smh.com.au/news/scorchedearth/rain-from-nowhere/2007/03/11/1173548009543.html

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"But a true champion, face to face with his darkest hour, will do whatever it takes to rise above. A man fights, and fights, and then fights some more. Because surrender is death, and death is for pussies"

-Kenny Powers

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Doomworld - The Place for Deep Discussions on Moral Topics, at the cost of a Kitten per Post

And sometimes a topic about a 20 year old video game pops up.

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Do animals suicide or is it just humans? Well other than Lemmings.

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didn't we just have this conversation a few months ago?

This is the problem with emos. Fucking repetition. Shit or get off the pot already.

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gggmork said:

Ignore the "cure" for suicide, focus on the cause. In 90% of cases it is the cultural sickness of systematically institutionalizing unfortunate inductees to the human population in industrial assembly line brain vats, where authorities can guide them into the most manipulable positions while they are innocent defenseless and impressionable, and where industry can feed off of them by trading 'antichrist superstar' cds and pogs for their lunch money, horizontal social sickess with mandatory bully socializing, vertical social sickness with mandatory pedophile teachers involuntarily adopting the entire populations children/future tax cattle. The illuminati purposely tweaks the sprinklers of all high schools so they turn outward towards the sidewalk, so the school literally pees on you. What a facade of neatly trimmed hedges and mowed lawns and massive taxpayer force funded building architecture to trick you into thinking it has the slightest bit of legitimacy. This is where the kids quickly realize they belong to a species plagued by an organized parasitic memeplex of mental sickness. This is a systematic soul removing machine, a prisoner training institution, and anyone who commits suicide was really indirectly murdered. Its time to give up on humanity and let the next species evolve. Maybe octopi will do better.


I had a similar discussion (not so crazy as that, but about conspiracy) with a friend that's a teacher. The federal government has schools by the budget balls. State schools can teach whatever they want if they can survive without federal money, if they can't, which none can, they teach what the government tells them otherwise no funding from the government.
On topic: I agree with Kenny Powers.

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I believe its selfish because its a drastic response to ones own feelings, instead of how the loss may affect others. I'm not really in any position to establish a system based on beliefs, but I'm really fascinated with the moral code that each individual needs to give more than they receive. And even when you're as backed far into a corner, you're giving something to someone, tangible or not. To off yourself severs that connection you have with that person and leaves them with one less companion, lover, and in turn, less confidence, bravery, comfort, stability, or something like financial aid or whatever.

I think the afterlife may be a whole lot better than the way our lives are now, and hanging ourselves could possibly be that shortcut to perfect numbness and absence of thoughts and anxiety. But first and foremost we all have a responsibility to do what we can to not make life suck for one another, and cutting ourselves out of other peoples lives is the opposite of that.

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Suicide is often a bad choice for a temporary problem. Unless your life is total Hell (like if you have a terminal illness) than it usually would make sense to commit suicide. However, most of the time people commit suicide over things that could be easily fixed without the need to end your life.

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My work sent me to a two-day suicide intervention workshop not long ago. We started off by sharing our philosophical beliefs on suicide, and I assumed that everybody else in the room would be black and white so I kept my shades of gray to myself. Then, the instructor*, a 19-year veteran of a Mobile Crisis Response Unit, came out and said that she doesn't believe suicide is wrong. This surprised me. How do you survive that kind of draining job for half your life without a belief in the fundamental rightness of your actions?

Here's the thing: there are cases where suicide is arguably justifiable. But, when you're out of your mind with sadness and misfortune, you're not of sound mind to make that choice. A core sentence in the toolbox of the intervenor: "You don't have to make that decision right now."

As for whether suicide is justified by personal ownership, I'm not sure that me and a servant of the libertarian party line can convince each other of anything. Our axioms are different, and I believe we all have a stake in everyone else's well-being.


*Somehow she seemed completely free of battle scars. She was talkative but soft-spoken, and emotionally stable as well-adjusted bedrock. It was easy to imagine her exuding compassion for a living. She told a story about how she could tell someone to "Fuck off!" and the recipient of this invective would walk away, considering, "That's a good point, maybe I should fuck off sometimes. I'm glad that she told me so."

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Extremely TLDR version:

--Most suicides are ill-advised, based on momentarily intense feelings.

--Chances are, as a person living in the western hemisphere, if the victim thought rationally about it, they'd find that life, on balance, is more good than bad and that "this too shall pass."

--Suicide seems totally valid for a person that has very good reason to believe they've seen their best days and it's downhill from their current place (i.e. a late-stage cancer patient that faces excruciating pain if they decide to try to live, an extremely elderly person, etc)


Most of the time, it's a bad decision made at an extremely low emotional point. In very particular scenarios, it can be an acceptable answer.

I think about suicide as an option for me frequently. More than I should. I have been going through a terrible time for the last 1.5 years or so, so there have been plenty of times (as recently as this morning) when I thought, you know, I should just stop all this nonsense. But then I reason with myself and I can't disagree that life, on balance, is better than this. I'm young (29) and have a lot to live for, even if NONE of it's happening right this moment. If I can get past this stage of my life somehow, things will be better. There's a lot more awesome stuff to be had in life. I'm not much of a "go-getter" but the promise of things being better than they are now is enough to keep me from doing it. For now at least.

Think very hard about the future, what you'd miss out on, how things MIGHT go for you, and weigh that against your current situation if you're considering suicide.

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