reason for living

Give me a reason for living

This web site is not really a suicide help web site at all but rather a lot of people visit here because they are feeling like killing themselves and are looking for something helpful so I thought I had better put together this little page.

You might have found this page because you are feeling suicidal and you are looking for a reason to keep living.  It is really quite difficult for me to give you a reason for living because I don't know you, and so I cannot offer you a listening ear or even a smile.  Perhaps I would give you a smile and a hug if we knew one another but you are there and I am somewhere else (and quite possibly fast asleep).  Well, even though I cannot be much help to you, I have been to the edge myself and so I do have some idea of what the view is like when you have turned your back on life and are staring oblivion in the face .... 

the final approach

When my dreams had long since faded and the twilight would not end,
when the loneliness, pain and anger was a wound that would not mend.
When no one knew to care and no one cared to know,
when I sat on the floor alone with just one last place to go.
When the knife rested on my skin, its closing lines to score,
when I had no desire to endure living any more.
When about the whys and hows I no longer wished to think,
when my fear of death had already passed away and I had reached the brink ...
It was then that you spoke into my mind, and reached my dying heart
and gave me one, just one, reason why I should not yet depart.
And now I live and live with joy for now you live in me
With love you came and stood beside and slowly set me free

Well, as you probably realised, I didn't die that day.  Life did, eventually, get better.  The dawn did, eventually, come.  The pain became the soil in which compassion grew.  Solitude gave birth to fortitude.  Somewhere in the wilderness some flowers, though only small ones, did eventually begin to grow.  It took time, longer than I might have liked, but it did happen.

Sometimes it seems that there is no way out, no possibility of any improvement, no reason to go on, no reason for living.  Well, two things I am sure about:  First, when I had such thoughts about myself, I was wrong.  I came out of the darkness and now life is good — it is not very easy or comfortable or luxurious, nor even especially happy, and there is still plenty of loneliness but, despite these things, life is certainly worth living.  Now I have hope.  The second thing I am now sure about is that death is not the escape that it offers to be; at one time I thought that death would be the end; that it would be a final full stop at the end of a dreary and painful life sentence.  Now I am sure that death is only the doorway to somewhere else; a place that is perhaps better or perhaps worse but certainly not a place that I or you or anyone else should be in a hurry to get to.

I cannot give you one simple reason for living but I offer you this, my own experience: that when all human hope and desire for life has ended there is yet a hope and a life that has a different source.  When I had passed through the rough hills and bitter valleys of loneliness, traversed acres of emotional desolation and arrived alone, scarred and hurting at that final border — the border that no mortal crosses twice — there God himself met me, turned me around and slowly led me back.

If you are considering killing yourself then I would like to suggest that you take the time to find somebody who will listen to you; tell them why you want to die.  In many cases when you hear your own explanation spoken out loud it will probably sound pretty silly, in which case have a good laugh at yourself and then get back to learning to live.  On the other hand if your explanation still sounds good then, before you make your exit from life, give yourself another 24 hours or another week.  Obviously its your choice to die, but why rush?  There isn't anything in life that is permanent and that feeling of wanting to die isn't going to last forever — some days you'll want to die and some days you won't, so why do today what you can put off until tomorrow?  If things are as bad as they can get then they aren't going to get any worse are they?  When you've reached rock bottom, the only way is up.  Yes, yes, I know that these are truly appalling clichés, but they're true all the same.

Well, since I have probably been of no help whatsoever, let me now point you in the direction of some people who might be more helpful ... If you would just like to talk to somebody anonymously then there might be an organisation near you that will provide a non-judgemental listening ear.  At the end of the line there is somebody who is sitting there solely because they want to listen.  In the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland you will find a suitable telephone number listed under the “Samaritans”; despite the name, they are NOT a religious organisation, just a listening one.

There are people (like the Samaritans) in many countries of the world who are willing to listen without criticising or judging, and without telling you what to do.  There are also groups that will give advice and if you're really lucky you might even find somebody who will give some practical help though you might have to hold your breath a while before you find them.  There are even some groups who will tell you the best ways of commiting suicide but my suggestion would be that you contact them last or you might miss something worthwhile.  Mind you now I come to think of it, I'd have to be a bit suspicious of anybody who thought they knew the best ways to die because, after all, its not like they've got any first hand experience is it?  If you were going to make a tough journey through life you'd want somebody who knew the route and who had been there before and who knew what to expect when you arrived but a so-called suicide expert is still alive and therefore hasn't yet died and therefore clearly hasn't got any relevent experience at all have they?  Well, its just a thought ...

The Samaritans and other organisations like them have web sites in some countries.  Here's a little list of a few I found for you.  The Samaritans are not religious but some of these other organizations might have religious opinions and some might not.  If you have the misfortune to find a group that you don't feel comfortable with then just try a different group instead.

Hong Kong
United States of America
United Kingdom
Republic of Ireland
Singapore (24 December 2007, apparently not working properly ... if not working please use 'worldwide' link below.)
Worldwide (if not listed above, try here)

This web site is not affiliated with any of these organisations.  I mention them only because I know that they are there and waiting for your call or email, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

For other interent resources try an AltaVista search for "befrienders" or "suicide crisis".  If you feel more comfortable using the “google” search engine then here is a similar Google search for “+"suicide crisis" +befrienders”.

Best wishes, and I hope you'll still be with us tomorrow ...



PS:  And who said life was supposed to be easy anyway? 

PPS:  A couple of late thoughts for anybody who thinks that they have failed.  There are only two kinds of failure — the kind that comes when you do try, and the kind that comes when you don't try.

If you tried and failed then, in my opinion at least, the fact that you tried does count as an achievement in itself and at gains you at least one point towards to success.  Sometimes you win but sometimes there is scope for a better result.  In any case, well done; I appreciate your making some effort even if nobody else does ... now, perhaps have another go or even try something else.

On the other hand, if you failed because you didn't actually try at all then probably you should reconsider the situation and, after some careful thought, make some sincere and appropriate effort.  The end result might be a lot better than you expect!

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