Suicide is never an easy topic to discuss but it’s a terrible thing that occurs. Sometimes individuals just feel so sad, helpless and alone; it seems that suicide is the best option to solve the problem — but it’s not. As one of my professors said last year in my Abnormal Psychology class, “Suicide is a solution to a temporary problem.” So whoever you are, if you are reading this, and have tried or thought about suicide, please hear me out! It will get better.
I know the feeling of loneliness and helplessness, and I have thought of suicide as a solution and it’s truly not. The solution is to overcome whatever barrier you may face, and that means taking care of yourself, going to see help or whatever it may be. Just know that there are a lot of people who would drop everything in a second to give you the support you need to help you, some people might even surprise you. Don’t ever feel embarrassed or like you’re a crazy person because you might seek out therapy. There is nothing wrong with you, you just need a hand, and that’s what the counselors at school, family, and friends are for.
Even though I am only 21, I can say this: there is a lot to see in this world we live in and there are a lot of wonderful people to meet and love. Throughout my life so far, I have traveled to Spain and Italy and made friends that have broadened my horizon in every way. Now I am not telling you to go drop 2,000 dollars to go travel somewhere, I just want you to know that there is a crazy amount of great opportunities out there, and to follow your passions, whatever they may be.
I have always felt a strong desire to help others, and if I could I would help everyone. Of course I have faced a lot of negativity to the idea of me going into social work or counseling or etc.; however, working with and helping others is what makes me happy, and I see it as a career where I will always be learning from others and really living my life to the fullest. So make sure you do the same. Make sure you live your life in whatever way that makes you happy. I really believe that if you take up something that you love whether that is a career or some sort of hobby, I guarantee you will always learn more about yourself. I will also say, challenge yourself to do something you have never done before; maybe even something that makes you uncomfortable or nervous. (You probably think this kid is nuts but hey, I’m me.) Hell I have done that a few times and on most occasions I’m happy that I gave it a try. I volunteered/worked at a psychiatric center and it was one of the greatest experiences of my life. Before I started it I was scared shi*less, but as soon as I walked into that building, and worked with the residents I was assigned to help out. Immediately my fears went to the wayside.
In my travels to Spain, and my experiences at home where I have tried different things I have learned one very valuable lesson, and that is: everything in life is a lesson. That was something my host father told me when I was living in Spain. He said this because at the time he was struggling with money to pay the bills. He was beginning to see everything he worked so hard for disappear, and his life-savings being drained. Although money was tight, he did not see this as a tragedy but rather as a reminder of what is important to him: his family. This is something that I saw amongst his family and their interactions. Even though money was hard to come by, they still managed to have so much fun every day, make fun of each other (In a playful way), and just be truly happy. You could really feel the love between them all, and I could feel the love they gave me. After watching them, and living with them, it seemed like everything kind of clicked — you know that ah-ha moment? Well that is what happened, and when I came home I realized that I cannot be happy when I’m not doing what I love, when I’m listening to the expectations of everybody else, and when I‘m not letting myself grow… But now I am. So whatever you may be facing take it not as a tragedy, but rather as a lesson, and grow from it. Things will always get better and the world is a lot better than most of us know.
I know I am no philosopher or guru (Sorry if I came across that way!). I know I definitely don’t have all the answers to life and probably never will, but I do believe I have a few things figured out. So good luck, stay strong and let yourself grow.
Written By: Kyle Cattell, SJC Student
Photo By: Creative Commons