I was talking to my therapist yesterday, well I was in a session, I wasn’t just randomly talking to him out of context, and yes, obviously I go to therapy.
My go to phrase for a long time has been “kill me”, and during the day I find many occasions where it comes handy. Sometimes the person in front of me is walking so slowly or worse than that talking so much slower, that I even resort to “Im gonna kill myself”. Well, I guess I am a really morbid person with a very dark sense of humour and some unresolved anger issues, but that’s not the point. Well, guess we know what I’m discussing with my therapist in our next session. I digress…
My favourite form of therapy is self-sarcasm, but it doesn’t always pan out, especially in office meetings, when coworkers just give you blank stares while awkwardly trying to walk away. Subtle. so you pay someone to listen to you make the jokes. I knew my therapist was the one when he laughed at my jokes like he has bought the tickets to his favourite standup comedian’s show which I aspire to be by the way.
Anyways, I was explaining that I have the ability to see people’s life through their point of view and to me everyone has their own lifeline but not everyone has that ability. For most people, everything is happening TO them, even if it’s you getting married to the love of YOUR life, it is their tragedy, their comedy or their don’t give a fig moment. He replied: “you are talking about empathy”. Touché!
A few months ago, I was reading the book “The Hilarious World of Depression”, and spoiler alert someone close to the writer commits suicide. They are shocked because they had been pondering the same thing for years as a bottom line, an exit plan, a plan B and the safety net. If all goes down, then I can just pack my bags and literally leave. Goodbye anxiety, farewell trouble my old friend and adios all those things that bother me to death.
I don’t know if all 14 year olds contemplate about suicide on a daily basis, bu me and a few other people that I know did, so maybe it’s a me thing or a generation or a gender or a culture thing. Well, I never tried it. I hate mess and manual labour. I am too lazy plus too many books to read and too many pastries left untried. I tried to take my chances and here I am.
As my mom would say upon facing any hardships, “it’s not as bad as death”. She is right, the only problem that can’t be solved is death. The rest of it, we can talk it out or fight it out or just sleep it off. For the most part anyway.
Which brings me to empathy. Or does it?
Anything happening to us is only happening to us and is not anyone’s business but removing ourselves from the equation by committing suicide is anything but (she loves her buts (pun intended)). There are no support groups for people who committed suicide (I’m not talking about those who survived) but there are many for people whose loved ones committed suicide.
Taking your life might seem like a perfect solution and gives the sense of agency but it’s not something you do and it’s not something that happens to you. It is something that is happening to all the people around you. You are not there to talk it out. They can’t fight you back. You decided to sleep it off. The Door is closed. There is no point of view, no lifeline, no empathy. There is just an awkward blank stare in the void. There isn’t even room for self sarcasm there. And believe me, you don’t want to go there.