Suicide is a lonely way out with no way back, a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
It is the number ten cause of death among adults and the number 2 cause of death among teenagers.
Suicide is also a profoundly selfish act (though the suicidal person is probably not able to comprehend it as such), because suicide inflicts more emotional pain and guilt on the survivors than almost any other form of loss could possibly do.
The Sources of Suicide:
Nobody wants to die.
People in emotional pain invariably do everything they can, everything they know how to do, to end their pain before choosing to end their lives.
The pain that produces suicidal impulses can arise from a number of different sources, including:
Early environmental factors
A lack of emotional coping skills
Imbalances in brain chemistry
- Add to these factors the stresses and painful events of daily life and the risk of suicide is dramatically magnified.
- Marital status plays a large part in suicide risk
People who have never been married are twice as likely to take their lives as married people.
People who are divorced or widowed have the highest suicide rate of all.
Most of those who attempt or commit suicide have a history of emotional problems, and depression is the number one cause of suicide.
The pain of depression is intense, but that pain can be alleviated.
Depression is curable
The warning signs of clinical depression fall into four broad categories:
Moodiness: A sad facial expression, frequent crying or moping, downcast features, and a look of exhaustion and discouragement, and unkempt appearance.
Painful Thinking: A depressed person will often be introspective in a self-defeating, self-blaming way.
The individual will agonize over past mistakes, about “what ifs” and “if onlys”
This person will also take an exaggerated and pessimistic view of his problems and will bitterly condemn himself or others for those problems.
This person most likely, feels completely helpless and boxed in by his problems, and his perception of those problems is usually out of proportion to reality.
Anxiety: The depressed individual often develops signs of anxious, irritable behavior.
May seem tense, nervous, and agitated.
Physical Symptoms: Negative mental and emotional activity in the brain stimulates the production of brain chemicals that affect body functions.
Sleep is affected
During waking hours body movements usually decrease, and a stooped posture and signs of physical exhaustion may appear.
Appetite and body weight are affected (both are usually diminished, though not always).
Digestion is affected (diarrhea, constipation, or alternating bouts of both).
Sexual interest disappears
Tension headaches, dry mouth, rapid or irregular heartbeat are frequently observed.
In women, the menstrual cycle may stop (amenorrhea) or become irregular (dysmenorrheal)
Sixteen Warning Signs of Suicide
All people who threaten suicide should be taken seriously whether or not they are serious.
Most people who commit suicide have left some sort of warning, such as the statement, “My problems would all be over if I were dead,” or “Everyone would be better off if I were dead.”
Women attempt suicide about five times more frequently than men, but twice as many men as women are successful in the attempt.
Men tend to use more violent means to commit suicide.
Women are more likely to use suicide as either a cry for help or an attempt to get attention.
Sixteen factors or symptoms that are commonly found in suicide cases are:
The individual manifests intense emotional pain, such as is seen in cases of depression, along with symptoms such as early morning sleep disturbance, loss of appetite, and loss of sex drive.
The individual expresses feelings of hopelessness.
The individual has a prior history of suicide attempts or has warned others of suicidal intentions.
The individual has severe health problems.
The individual has experienced a significant loss—the death of a spouse, the loss of a job, or something similar.
The individual has made a specific suicide plan.
The individual manifests chronic self-destructive behavior, such as drug abuse, alcoholism, risky sexual behavior, or something similar.
The individual has high or perfectionistic person standards and an intense ambition to achieve.
The individual has experienced intense and disturbing events during the preceding six months.
The individual manifests disheveled and unkempt appearance.
The individual shows a lack of concentration, decreased work performance, or failing grades.
The individual withdraws from friends, family, and regular activities.
The individual gives away prized possessions, puts financial matters in order, draws up a will, writes “goodbye” letters – all part of a process of tying up loose ends and preparing to die.
The individual demonstrates a fascination or obsession with death.
The individual makes threats such as “I’ll show them! They’ll be sorry when I’m gone!”
The individual makes indirect statements of a death wish, such as, “I wish I’d never been born,” or “Everyone would be better off without me.”
Is Suicide a Sin?
People who commit suicide are intensely self-preoccupied.
They are not thinking about the effect of their death on the surviving spouse, the surviving children, or other friends and relatives.
-Children commonly blame themselves for the suicide of a parent, and statistics show that children of parents who committed suicide are many times more likely than the general population to choose suicide as a solution to their adult problems.
Suicide is a sin
The injunction of “Thou shalt not kill” is not invalidated simply because the murder victim is oneself.
Suicide is never God’s will
The Bible records only seven cases of suicide: Abimelech (Judges 9:54), Samson (Judges 16:30), Saul (See 1 Samuel 31:4), Saul’s armorbearer (1 Samuel 31:5), Ahithophel (2 Samuel 17:23), Zimri (1 Kings 16:18), and Judas Iscariot, whose suicide is recorded in all four Gospels.
-None of the individuals who committed suicide in these biblical accounts was acting in accordance with God’s will at the time.
God alone knows the state of a person’s heart so just because someone commits suicide that doesn’t mean they have committed an unforgivable sin and that they cannot enter heaven.
The person who has trusted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord but who experiences emotional problems or severe stresses that lead to suicide does not abrogate his or her faith by abrogating his or her life.
One sinful act—the sin of suicide, in this case—does not doom a person to an eternity without God.
Only the act of rejecting Jesus Christ can accomplish.
What About You?
Have you ever considered making a fatal choice?
Have you ever struggled with depression?
Do you feel boxed in by life and by circumstances?
Life is difficult but life doesn’t have to defeat us.
God has given us many resources to enable us not only to survive, but also to experience true joy, peace, and happiness.
Those resources include:
Your connection to the people you love is more important than your failures or your achievements.
If you don’t feel you can go on living for your own sake right now, then commit yourself to living for your children, your spouse, and your friends.
There is no greater hurt you could inflict on them right now than your death.
Pick up the phone and call someone, even if it’s 3a.m., call someone.
You’ll be glad, and your friend will be glad.
Be honest about what you are feeling and what you have been considering.
Don’t be afraid to say, “I feel terrible, and I’ve been thinking about suicide”.
Your emotions are painful right now.
Cry, yell, pound your fists into something soft, but express your emotions.
Breathe deeply, again and again.
Then pick up the phone and call a counselor or a suicide hotline and verbalize your emotions.
God is alongside you right now
Ask Him for a reason to live.
Ask Him to help you sense the value and preciousness of your one and only irreplaceable life.
As you pray, place your hand on your chest and feel the beating of your heart.
Thank god for the life He has given you, and ask Him to help you to use your life to bless other people.
If you have a pet, hold it gently but tightly.
Stroke it and talk to it.
Let your pet love you back.
You may think you have a reason to die, but you have many more reasons to live.