Nobody can really say for sure why somebody would decide to take his or her life. There are a lot of contributing factors and each case is separate and unique. One common thought is that the person who commits suicide thinks that their death will be worth more than their life is to family, friends and society in general. They believe that they have absolutely no influence on the world around them. If somebody is contemplating suicide, or sends notes or letters saying that they are having suicidal thoughts it is important to listen and get that person all the help that they need. Tell someone. Talk to the person about how important they are and how important their life is. It isn’t easy talking about suicide, but talking about it and getting people the help they need is always worth the effort if it can save a life.
What’s just happened on my rez is what is referred to as a suicide cluster. A suicide cluster is when two or more people commit suicide within a few days of each other. It becomes as if suicide is contagious. It can spread from person to person, not only affecting them but everyone they have ever been close to.
Suicide clusters can often affect isolated individuals with low self-esteem who internalize their emotions, usually teenage boys. When one suicide happens you can add feelings of unresolved grief and pretty soon a domino effect is created.
Unfortunately the media can be a contributing factor when it comes to suicide clusters. By not reporting properly on a suicide story the suicide can be made to seem glamourous, or even appealing. If suicide reporting is oversimplified or over-reported or sensationalized, it can cause a person who feels helpless to see suicide as a means to touch lives. Glamourized suicide can also cause people considering suicide to feel the act of suicide as a way to garner attention. This sort of thinking is incredibly dangerous.
No matter how bad things seem, no matter how hopeless you think your life might be, suicide is never the answer. Things may at times seem hopeless but they will get better. For as long as we live we will see suffering and it’s important to always keep in the back of your mind that it will pass. Eventually the problems will go away and things will be good again. Suicide affects a lot of people and never in a positive way.