A friend invited me to a Thanksgiving “Orphans” dinner this past Thursday. It was really wonderful. We ate, drank and played some games. Even though it was a joyous occasion, I can never seem to escape being reminded of some random topic in my life that don’t need reminding. We played a game called “If,” where we are supposed to complete “If” statements, such as “If you were to become an animal, you’d be….” Some statements were more strange than others, with one being “If you had to kill someone, your method would be…” Upon hearing this sentence, someone shouts, “Let’s make it a little darker. How would you kill yourself?”
People actually started pondering and responding to this question, even talking about where one would need to shoot oneself in order to die instantly (this person was a doctor). Another pointed out how men tend to complete more suicides and that more women tend to choose taking pills as the preferred method. Someone then adds, “that’s because women don’t really mean it.”
I don’t know if it was inappropriate for someone to bring this topic up, but it was hard for me to sit there while people so casually talked about suicide. The thing is, it’s not that hard for me to think about the methods without someone having to bring it up. By discussing this topic, it only gives me more ideas. I don’t know if this is always the case, but once you’ve gone through something like this, you can never act as if you’ve never thought of it; thinking about suicide and death is always going to be a part of me, or at least very close to me.
It was especially uncomfortable when one commented about how women don’t really mean it when they’re attempting suicide. How in the world would he know that? When I made my attempt, I meant every bit of it. I think it also saddened me to realize some people’s views on those who make an attempt. Whether they picked a “successful” form is another matter. The fact that someone went through just the actions of carrying out a suicide means that the person was carrying an insurmountable amount of pain that I’m not sure can be expressed accurately to those who’ve never been in such position. It’s an ache, a sadness that overwhelms me even as I think about it now.
I really did have a great time at this Thanksgiving gathering, but the lingering thoughts from that dinner isn’t just about the lovely evening I had with friends. I’ve yet to be able to have this topic of suicide leave my mind, and I don’t know if it’ll go away anytime soon. Again, I don’t necessarily think it was a bad thing to have this subject brought up since it could use some public recognition, but it’s never easy to have to rethink what suicide means in your own life.