First of all, please forgive me for taking centuries to publish this post. I have been up and down up on this grind! know whoramsayyin?? Anyway, on to more serious matters. I had requested that you share with me some of your suicide stories and I want to applaud all the brave hearts that came forward to share their experiences. I would like to believe that sharing is caring,because we get to reach out to a struggling soul somewhere out there in the world and maybe prevent cases of suicide from happening. Do you know how many people take their lives everyday? let me break down the infelicitous statistics to you.
According to World Health Organization (WHO), one person dies by suicide every forty seconds! Not minutes, not hours, seconds! By the time you heat up that chicken in the microwave for two minutes, three people have already committed suicide…tragic isn’t it? If you still don’t feel the intensity of this matter, let me bring it closer to home. In Kenya,according to research done by Standard Digital, 3000 Kenyans in every 100,000, commit or attempt suicide. Kenya is the 65th country out of 192 countries in suicide cases, more women committing suicide more than men. It’s actually the leading cause of death of people between the ages of 15-29 years! Has it hit home yet? Lets take a look at two of the emails I received. For those I couldn’t publish due to space, I still appreciate your bravery and will ensure your stories touch other lives on a different platform. As promised, your names remain anonymous….
Female X,24 years
I have had about 3 suicidal experiences ,when I was taking pills all I wanted is to take away the pain away.I was devastated,sad and felt alone.
Rejection is what I hate the most and most times when all my suicide attempts happen, it’s when I have been badly rejected by someone. .but I have learnt to love myself though I’m still struggling.
I believe more awareness should be provided and hotlines too because not everyone can afford a lawyer. Also people should learn more about self love .if someone truly loves themselves they cant try hurting themselves.
It’s a taboo talking about it because people think it’s attention seeking but it’s truly not.We just need help to be normal..and not judged.
Thanks for your help hun!
Male Y,23 years
The main cause of suicide, as far as I’m concerned, is depression. In light of the suicide prevention week. I would like to share my story and a thing or two about depression. The year 2012 was the most devastating period in our family. My father had been very ill and had been admitted at the Nairobi Hospital. By this time, he had been in and out of hospital severally in the past year,but he would always get better and come back home. I didn’t think this time would be any different. It was.
The burial took place within the week. This took a big toll on us, especially on my elder brother. My brother had Bipolar and he felt he had lost his only confidant. We could tell that he was very distraught. After about a month, a group of friends and family came for me at school with the news. The burial took place within the week. We’ve always asked ourselves what we could have done differently to prevent what happened. I can’t claim to have understood what my brother was going through, but I’m sure depression was part of it. I think it’s important for one to understand that in life, there will always be times when you’re high and times when you’re low. And it’s unfortunate how permanent that low feeling seems when you’re going through it. And I think that this is what leads to depression – the thought that this low period of your time is how things will always be. Secondly, maintaining friendship may help someone in need. Sometimes all one needs is that unexpected call or visit from a close friend to realize that there’s so much to life. And at times all the encouragement is insufficient. Nevertheless, we are obligated to ensure that no one calls you a friend just as a category for the people they know. We should be there for each other.
In female X’s case, the cause of her suicidal ideation was lack of self esteem and lack of a sense of belonging. In Male Y’s case, the father’s death caused his bipolar brother to plunge deep into depression and the only way he could relieve his pain was by taking his own life. On talking further with male Y, I noted that there was a possibility that the brother was ailing from what the interpersonal-psychological theory of suicidal behaviour terms as, “perceived burdensomeness” remember the term from my last blog? He probably felt that by taking his own life, he was unburdening his family and friends from having to deal with him in the state that he was in…or maybe, he was running away from his own pain. We are presented with two cases. The first one, the individual attempted suicide and is in a position to express what led her to the decision. In the second case, the individual actually went through with it and his brother expresses the need to know what caused his brother to commit the heart wrecking act. So how do you spot the signs that a loved one is suffering from suicidal ideation? Keep checking my blog and I can break it down for you some more, at length. Until next time…..
With love and light!