Permanent solution to a temporary problem

What does it take for a person to want to end their life? Why would someone ever want to end their life? Life may be challenging at times, but doesn’t it seem ridiculous to want to end your own life?

These questions are usually the ones that pop up in our heads whenever the topic of suicide is brought up. What most people fail to realize, however, is that whenever someone even brings up the idea of suicide or seems to be contemplating the idea, it is usually a cry for help — either from the people around them or from professional assistance. Suicide may seem like it’s the “easy way” out of facing your responsibilities, but we shouldn’t be the judge of why someone would want to end their life. The only thing that we should do is help these people.

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. According to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death in adolescents between the ages 15-24 and the 2nd leading cause in adults between the ages 25-34 — the same age ranges as nearly half the students at Los Medanos College.

Many people dismiss suicide attempts as calls for attention, or just simply being overly emotional. People who want to commit suicide need help, not shunning. Signs that someone wants to commit suicide can include anything from drastic changes to the person’s appearance, giving away objects of personal or monetary value, even social withdrawals or isolation. Even if anyone says anything about suicide or ending their life, we shouldn’t ignore them — we should make sure they’re OK.

The best thing to do for someone that is feeling suicidal is to get help. Whether it’s telling a counselor, or trying to persuade them to talk to a professional. Maybe even hold an intervention of some sort — just let that person know that they are not alone. We have all faced times in our lives when we have felt completely and utterly alone, but one of the best ways to get out of that feeling is to surround ourselves with those who love us.

Losing someone close to you is probably one of the hardest experiences that one can face — especially knowing that there might have been something that you could have done to stop it. I once knew a person who had gone to more funerals for her friends who committed suicide than she could count. I asked her how she ever got over these deaths.

“You never do,” she said.

It’s true. Experiencing a death is not something we can simply wish away, it stays with us forever.  We’re not superheroes, we can’t stop every death from happening, but we can help by being a friend.

We have to be there for those who need it. No one should ever feel as though ending their lives is the only way they can be happy. We must show our love, our compassion, our friendship with those we care for.

If you ever feel hopeless or depressed, just remember that every day is a new thing to look forward to. Some day’s suck, but some days are great. Look forward to eating the last Pop-Tart in the box. Look forward to reading the new book from your favorite author. Look forward to that new movie coming out. Maybe have a day where you just “Treat Yo Self.” Just remember there are great things to live for, no matter how small they may seem. Life can be hard, but the little things can make it better. Never forget the love that is constantly around, even if it doesn’t seem to be there. We’re all here to live our lives, not for the bullies or the mean bosses, but for ourselves.

If you ever feel like you need help, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at