Saturday, November 20, 2010

Farewell, cruel world. Saturday, November 20, 2010.

“Screw you all. You don’t care about me anyway. No one cares about me. This is it. I’m done. I’m throwing myself onto the subway tracks. I hope you all are happy!!!!” – Fictional compilation of dozens of suicidal farewells I’ve seen on Facebook

I don’t have many rules for the Suicide Attempt Survivors board, but this is one of them: If I see a suicidal farewell note, I will delete it.

One such note appeared recently. I removed it and sent out a reminder about my rule. I received the following PM from a fellow who then blocked me:

“wow I see if i got in crises I'm wasting my time in your group. sorry but whats the point to have a group about suicide and help if don't want see goodbye notes, hello excuse me you'll see them duh. specially from people who don't have any places to look for help. i haven't see any more selfish and sucker than that. and giving her a simple # won't help.”

Wow. Maybe I need to clarify.

SAS IS a place to come for help. I want it to be an online support group. Those of us who have survived a suicide attempt are the only ones who can really understand each other. If you’re feeling depressed and anxious, if suicidal thoughts keep invading your mind and you don’t want them there, if you’re feeling misunderstood or triggered, by all means post about your feelings. You must realize that the board is not moderated 24/7, that we can’t help in an emergency, and that we’re not professionals. But we can lend an ear and a virtual hug.

However, if you’re just pissed at the world, or you’ve already decided you’re going to do yourself in and you’re hoping for an audience, then I suggest another board like “Suicidal Venting.” There is a big difference between seeking help and seeking attention.

What happens when you post a suicidal farewell on Facebook? Well, you upset a lot of people, many of whom are depressed, anxious, and vulnerable. But it’s not like announcing your intent IRL. Here on Facebook, we don’t know who you really are, where you really live, or how to really help you. So all we can do is feel scared and helpless. And for every Facebook farewell that culminates in a real suicide (and there have been some), there are probably 500 that do not. Which means in a few days or weeks, chances are you’ll be posting your farewell again.

So please. We are all here because we are healing, and because we’ve hit bottom and don’t want to be there again. We all know how it feels. If you are feeling depressed and hopeless, go ahead and tell us about it. If you are scared because you might hurt yourself, there are numbers to call (like 1-800-suicide).

But if you just want to shock people or make us feel guilty, there are other places to post.



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