I’ve been quiet for a while (no pun) because I’ve been struggling with writing an article about suicide. Recently a nephew went out this way, and this brought back memories from a few years ago when an acquaintance went out by her own hand also. It has taken some time to put down my thoughts on paper (okay, a word processor) and arrange them in a readable format. The article has some very personal testimony, and is very blunt. The connecting subjects of divorce, homosexuality, depression and anger are part of it, so exercise caution in reading. There will be many who do not like the truths I included, and I will be attacked. Here are some of the opening paragraphs, and there’s a link at the bottom for the whole article on wholebible.com
Her name was Theresa, a woman who killed herself at the end of December 2004 by jumping from a cliff on a hill near my home. She left behind eight kids, a broken marriage, and saddened friends. I knew Theresa a little because a few years before she died I answered an ad she placed at a local music store for people to form a band. We played together a couple of times; she was gifted with writing songs and playing keyboard and guitar. It didn’t work out for us to keep playing together because she lived in a town about 45 minutes away, so I mostly lost touch with her except for a couple of emails. Once she attended a Bible study we had in our home but as I remember the distance again was too great so she didn’t keep coming. I was reacquainted with her when I saw the newspaper article telling of her death.
I thought at first that she could not possibly have committed suicide, because the last I knew she seemed to be well adjusted if melancholy and bitter over her divorce. She had, I heard, solid relationships with a Baptist church she attended after she moved to our town, loved her kids, and had various friends. I suspected foul play; she couldn’t have jumped; she must have been pushed. But as the details were related to me, they found her footprints at the top of the cliff showing she was running towards the edge, and she had to jump far enough to clear a ledge just below the lip of the cliff. What sort of pain and anger, I wondered at the time, drove her to run toward her own destruction like that?
More recently a nephew of mine also decided to end his life. I didn’t know him at all, really, because he lived in another state and he’s the son from a previous marriage of my sister-in-law’s second husband. I met him a couple of times when he was a teenager. He was a likable, quiet kid who was into computers and was an amateur astronomer. According to friends he was smart and had two astronomy magazine articles written about some of his work. Like Theresa, he also seemed stable and there was no warning that he was feeling suicidal. Neither left a note, so we can only guess at the final straw that caused them to self-depart this physical plane.
As I understand it, for a few days before Theresa killed herself she wore duct tape over her mouth. One of her kids asked her why, and she said “no one was listening to her anyway.” She was right, in a way. We don’t want to hear it when someone is contemplating their own demise. After they’re dead we wonder why they didn’t seek help, but before they go it’s too uncomfortable to consider. Even if they did talk people have difficulty with answering. We can’t even talk about it very well after our loved ones are gone, so how much harder is it when they’re alive?
Read more online at www.wholebible.com