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by Zoey Jones

We've previously covered on renegadepress.com the signs, symptoms and actions needed to intervene if you think someone is at risk of creating suicide. In this article, I'm more interested in talking about a cry for help and the need to respond.

In a society that places great importance on privacy, we often tend to stand back, keep our distance and not get involved. We've somehow managed to confuse democracy and freedom from persecution with moral ambivalence and freedom from responsibility.

Ralph, or Popper as he became known, lived a shadowed existence at school. No one really saw him or heard what he was saying. He was in many ways invisible. By trying to reach out over the internet, his cry for help was equally impersonal. When you think about it, it's kind of ironic. We love the internet to instant message and chat to friends online. We view it as the great communication tool of our time. Yet, we don't even know many of these people. We know their codenames, we know a few interests, but it's superficial if we don't know who they really are.

I'm not saying that online friends are pointless. All I'm saying is that everyday, all around us, we have the opportunity to talk to interesting people, but we don't even know it. No one should feel as alone as Ralph felt. No one should have to reach out over the internet. So take some time to give someone a chance that you might not have, only do it in real time in the real world. You might be surprised at who you meet.




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