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Peace.

‘Hi mam, awful news about Chris Cornell, such a shame x’

I hit backspace on my iPhone and deleted the text. Both of my mothers siblings died due to suicide. As much as I want to talk about another inspiration dying from suicide, I fear it is something that is still too painful to talk about. I genuinely waited for my mother to text me about the breaking news, as I felt if she wanted to talk about it, she would.

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It has been on the news that the lead singer of the band Soundgarden had killed himself by hanging today. With every suicide by a well known artist, more awareness, more understanding. At least I hope this is the case. Too many people condemn suicide. I hate the fact that people have to resort to such measures for a cease in the pain, I could not imagine being a person that condemns the individual. Whether that person had a mental illness so horrific we cannot imagine or their feet were practically melting against steel in September 2001, who are we, in a completely different frame of mind, to judge how and why individuals go to the lengths they do to escape the pain.

It angers me, truly. I don’t mind admitting that things anger me, this is healthy and if I can open up about certain feelings, I will. According to the World Health Organisation, suicide is the second leading cause of death for people aged 15-29 globally. We need to stop pretending we know how much pain people go through and that death is never the answer. Sometimes it is the answer for that person. We tell sufferers to ‘man up’. We weep at their funeral, crying to the church ceiling asking why they didn’t speak up about such problems. We create this vicious circle and we need to find alternative ways around addressing such problems without labeling suffers as weak or that they undervalue life.

Life isn’t a gift that we need to force upon people that want nothing but and end to their own consciousness. We need to make life that gift, by understanding how horrific mental illness can be and preventing such illnesses from manifesting. This won’t work by telling them how good life is because yours is more tolerable. Sadly, death provides the wings to leave this world for too many people, lets stop pretending that this world isn’t worth leaving.

4 replies »

  1. The world *isn’t* a place worth leaving if you do it right. Cornell was an extremely lucky man, materially speaking. I suppose this goes to show how little wealth and fame can mean. I will remember him by his music. “I’m going to break my rusty cage.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • It just saddens me to hear the inevitable questions such as ‘he had everything, why did he feel like ending it all?’ as if depression wouldn’t be a factor (if that was indeed the cause). I heard a TV interviewer ask that of an ex footballer after he attempted suicide a year or so ago, she said ‘you were wealthy, had a great family, but this wasn’t good enough for you’, which to me seems very judgemental and inaccurate.

      I shall now go and listen to some of his songs on my day off work!

      Like

  2. Mental illness is something that no one who hasn’t been brushed by it really understands. This seems like an appropriate quote from the man himself:

    Words you say never seem
    To live up to the ones
    Inside your head
    The lives we make
    Never seem to ever get us anywhere
    But dead

    Liked by 1 person

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