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Suicide and the Law of Chastity
SvenIronhand posted a topic in Marriage and Relationship AdviceSo my fiance has been struggling for the past few weeks with life and has been seriously contemplating suicide. So we did some stuff we shouldn't have. I thought it would help and it did. Is it wrong that I did it to save her life? There was literally no other option. I tried everything else but nothing worked.
People Still ”Commit Suicide”
prisonchaplain posted a topic in General DiscussionThe article below is one I am considering posting on a professional social media venue. However, it is a sensitive subject, so I thought I would vet it here first. Thanks buddies! Kevin Caruso, of Suicide.org, says that since suicide is not a crime we must stop saying that people “commit suicide.” (http://www.suicide.org/stop-saying-committed-suicide.html) Is he right? What does it mean to say that suicide is not a crime? In the United States, suicide is not illegal. So, as a civil matter, Caruso is right. However, suicide is broadly considered sinful—a spiritual crime. Both Catholicism and Protestantism (especially more conservative denominations) call suicide “mortal sin,” or even “self-murder.” Islam and Judaism generally concur. Dharmic traditions (Hinduism, Buddhism, etc.) also consider suicide a negative and unacceptable act. Caruso dismisses all such considerations, and insists that, “Suicide is not sin!” (http://www.suicide.org/suicide-is-not-a-sin.html) Instead of saying one commits suicide, Caruso prefers “death by suicide." He says the former term must be expunged from our vocabulary, because it is insensitive and stigmatizing. No and yes. It is not insensitive to state what a person did. It may be disheartening and sad, but not insensitive. Is it not more thoughtless to remove the deceased’s sovereignty and volition, by making it seem that suicide is somehow visited upon them? On the other hand committing suicide brings stigma. They violate spiritual tenants, and they deprive loved ones of spouse, child, parent, or even lover. “Well, they must have been crazy, so it’s not their fault.” There is a measure of truth in the statement. 30-70% of suicide completions involve depression or bipolar disorder. Of course, this means that 30-70% do not. Even amongst those who suffer from mental illness, we wonder if disease forces them to kill themselves. How much of the act is uncontrollable and how much is choice? Nobody wants survivors to experience unwarranted guilt. Likewise, broad brush condemnations and shaming have no place in suicide-survivor counseling. Jesus warned us not to judge, and we do well to leave the assessing of departed souls to God. Still, should we not discourage suicide attempts? Alcoholics suffer from an organic predisposition to their addiction. Nevertheless, we condemn alcohol abuse, because we know it leads to impaired driving and to verbal, mental and physical aggression. Likewise, even though “committing suicide” is not a felony, we must continue to say that it is wrong, bad, immoral, and that it hurts survivors. The way to love sinners is not by dismissing the sinfulness of what they do. Instead, we love them for who they are. Then we encourage them away from self-harm and towards the better expression of their God-given potential.
Suicide or Life
prisonchaplain posted a topic in LDS Gospel DiscussionThe desire for death may mask God’s loving purpose for us. Most readers probably know of someone who has either died by suicide, or was deeply hurt by someone else who had. Here are some 2013 facts from the CDC: There were over 41,000 suicides in the U.S. Just over one-third of them test positive for alcohol, 24% for antidepressants, and 20% for opiates and prescription pain medications. Sobriety may be the most underrated mental health goal there is! 4% of adults had thoughts of suicide—with the highest rate being the 18-24 year-olds, at 7.4%. Over 1% made a suicide plan, and again, that rate was much higher—2.5%--in the 18-24 year-old group. Among 9th-12th-graders the rates of suicidal thoughts are much worse—at 17%. The horror of suicide is all too common. So, what does the Bible say about it? The two main examples of suicide in scripture are men who had turned away from God. In the Old Testament, King Saul had disobeyed God by sacrificing animals and taking bounty that He had declared off-limits. He furthered his treachery by repeatedly trying to kill God’s choice to replace him—David. Saul was wounded in battle, and asked his armor-bearer to kill him. Ironically, the servant knre this was wrong and would not do it. So, Saul fell on his own sword. In the New Testament, Judas Iscariot had betrayed Jesus for 30 pieces of silver. While he shows he regretted his betrayal by returning the money, his final act is also one of defiance against God. He hanged himself. Suffering and hurt are real, but isolation and abandonment are lies from the pit of Hell. Like Saul and Judas, Elijah was afraid. He had just called down fire from heaven, and destroyed 400 of Baal’s prophets. The queen, rather than repenting, issued a death warrant for Elijah. This proved to be the sucker-punch that drove the prophet to suicidal ideation. He asks God to take his life. What happens next is insightful. God sends an angel to feed the prophet, and assure he gets plenty of rest. After a few days of this, Elijah’s perspective and faith are restored. We must never feel shame about taking time to care for our physical and emotional needs. Self-care is not selfish. It allows us the restoration we need to serve God and our loved ones well! Even after Elijah’s restoration, he remains downcast. He believes he is the only one left, who is faithful. We must not underestimate the suffering, the frustration, and the sense of hopelessness people feel! On the other hand, if we are the ones discouraged, let us not forget that God is never dormant, and we never see the full picture of what He is doing. Elijah learns that there are 7,000 who remain faithful, and that God plans to use his successors to destroy his enemies. In fact, these conquerors are already prepared to exact the Lord’s vengeance. What if King Saul had trusted God, and obeyed his command to kill the animals and enemy king? What if Judas had kept faith, & seen Jesus’ resurrection? What if we believed that all things work together for good to us, who love God? Jesus says He is the Life. We who love Him must live. Faith destroys depression, defeat, and death. Suicide is defiance against God. Life,and yes suffering, will gain us the victor’s crown! To see on linked in and access a link to a podcast of all 4-parts of my death series see: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/suicide-life-tommy-ellis?trk=hp-feed-article-title-publish
Death by Suicide -- How to Respond
prisonchaplain posted a topic in General Discussion“Death by suicide.” The phrase conjures painful memories for many. A parent, sibling, spouse, friend, colleague takes their life. Now we struggle through that particular holiday each year. A healthy support we can offer survivors is to “bear one another’s burdens.” Most often that is expressed by extensive listening, and by refraining from speaking. Those who embrace spirituality can find suicide even more troubling. How will God judge my loved one? Will I see him/her on the other side? An answer I find freeing is that God is ultimate goodness and justice. He will do right by our loved ones. I do not need to know how that will look. I trust God. A few may struggle with a niggling thought—maybe s/he was right. Perhaps their suffering is over. It may be that self-harm gets pushed from fleeting miserable contemplation to a ferocious temptation, in light of another’s death by suicide. To bolster our survivor instincts we Christians use our seasons of emotional health to meditate on verses like Romans 12:1: I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. Then, when we face the hardest self-destructive temptations we choose to live because our lives belong to God. In our worst times that has to be enough. As professional helpers, we clergy do well to ally ourselves with trusted therapists and other mental health specialists. Likewise, most psychologists and counselors, regardless of personal faith allegiance, accept that their clients’ spirituality is a huge area of potential strength and health. It’s not about us, or our chosen fields of expertise. We support the well-being of those we serve.
Robin Williams - dead at age 63
Guest posted a topic in General DiscussionRobin Williams was one of the most brilliant, dynamic, funny entertainers of our time. I wouldn't expect to be so saddened by a celebrity's passing, but I am. I have to wonder if he was so funny because he was really sad. I've wondered for a long time if that's the case with a lot of funny people. . .if it's just a cover or a coping mechanism for deep pain. Whatever it was that drove him to this, I will say that the world seems a little sadder without him here. I think he was not only talented, but also a kind man. He reminds me so much of one of my brothers. I won't judge him because I know how depression can affect a person. I am sad though, for him and for us. I love this video of him: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_j1Hq8L28Us
Suicide Is A Sin? Why?
Melissa569 posted a topic in General DiscussionEveryone always says you go to hell if you commit suicide. But I really don't understand why that is. I mean... Punish someone because they are so sad that they don't wanna live anymore? Or because they kept trying to think of reasons to live and they couldn't find any? I mean even here on earth, we tend to give these people therapy, rather than throwing them in prison. I just don't understand why in heaven, its not also understood that such people need help more than punishment.
Suicidally depressed and grieving sister needing prayers
KellyLC posted a topic in Advice BoardI'm sorry in advance if I say something wrong in this post. I've been a member since I was 11 years old in 1991 and a suicide griever since February 3, 2008. A good friend I'd known since I was about thirteen chose to cross the Veil at his own hand that day. :tears: My family and our bishop keep saying "you can only do temple work for your family" but this friend of mine was a young non-member named Will. His family set this site up for him, it has his picture on it: Will Jones Memorial I loved him (I still do) and I never got the chance to tell him! Maybe I could have saved him. . . He killed me too. :tears: Also, I didn't know anything about it until September 11 thanks to a series of "TRICKLE-DOWN" E-MAILS (as I call it) bounced between his mom, my dad and then it "just happened" to come to me: The first e-mail came from my father to me, 8-15-08: His exact words were: 1: "I heard from Rosie for the first time in a year. She needs someone to talk to. 'I lost my son earlier this year. He committed suicide this past Feb. I have had a hard time with it. Your friend-ship would be appreciated. Rosie' She loves you drop her a line dad." -------------------------------- I didn't see a name, so I automatically thought it was Rosie's other son, James. I didn't want it to have been James; I just didn't think my friend had done it. I'd forgotten most of the message because I'd had a seizure that day, but I remembered my 'father's' section of the message: 'she needs someone to talk to'. I send Will's mother a reply: 2: Hi, Rosie. Sorry I haven't been in touch in so long. We've been closing down the store. I got an e-mail from dad; he mentioned you needed someone to talk to? My end's always open. -------------------------------- Her next mail to me comes 8-21-08 at 11:29 pm: 3: Hi, I have been really down this year. I don't talk to your dad anymore except rarely, and a couple weeks ago when I was espically down I e-mailed him of that fact. He wrote me back that he was sorry that I was having a hard time and that is probably why he wrote you. I don't want to burden you with my problems, you have enough of your own. I'm sorry to be so gloomy. I love you, Rosie -------------------------------- I send a fast reply back the next morning at 9:22 am: 4: It's understandable. If it'll help at all I'll be praying for you. Hugs, Kelly -------------------------------- The next message I get from Rosie on 9-11-08 at 9:10 pm hit me like a knife; I read that e-mail and it literally felt like I'd been stabbed through the heart: 5: hey baby, I just talked to your grandmother. She told me your dad told ya'll about Will. I didn't know how to tell you. I hope you aren't mad at me. Any questions you want answered, just ask. I miss him so much. It has been really hard for me. I love you. Rosie -------------------------------- I'm in shock; I send her back a fast reply at 9:29: 6: I'm not mad at you, Rosie. Dad didn't tell me any details or names, he just said that something had happened. I didn't know it was Will until your e-mail tonight. I'm so sorry. What happened? -------------------------------- Her next e-mail to me at 10:04 pm was another knife: 7: Will felt like he couldn't live in this life anymore. He took his own life. He had been troubled for a long time. He is at peace now. If you have any questions you think I can answer, just ask. This has just about killed me, but I am doing better lately. I want to live for my James and April and my little grand-daughter, Austin. I love her with all my heart. I think Will wants me to get better to be a good grandmother for her. Love, Rosie -------------------------------- I send her a fast, stupid reply at 11:42 before I just lose it completely, start screaming and crying and can't stop: 8: I have a lot of questions and I don't know where to start. -------------------------------- Her next mail to me the next day starts off like this: 9: Ask me what questions you need to. I don't have all the answers but I will do my best for you. I have a lot of depression, I go up and down, half the week I'm up and half the week I'm down. WHY?! My family keeps saying really cold and insensitive things about Will's memory (Mom's a member of the Church, Grandma isn't) and I can't stand it anymore: "The boy was nothing to you" "Maybe this'll make his mother straighten up" "You need to get over it" They don't care about my feelings or me, just about the health insurance I'm bringing in. STUPID Medicaid. I wasn't there to help my friend. . . . I'm seriously thinking about going home myself February 3 of next year: There's a railway line that runs north to south through Melbourne FL near our ward building; our ward building's west of the railway. All I have to do is walk to the tracks, wait until a train's coming through, then just not move out of the way and let it finish the job. My family can take care of my insurance policy afterward. But at the same time I don't want to dump that job on someone else and have them stuck with the burden of sending me across the veil. I don't pray for help for myself or usually ask for prayers for myself but I'm hurting more than words can express and I don't know what to do. :tears: :tears: I'm sorry if I got on a rant. I didn't mean to. If this post is just in the way can someone delete it please?
dsholly59 posted a topic in LDS Gospel DiscussionMy brother took his own life last Saturday. He and I are both members of the church. He had severe mental illness and my bishop showed me where it says that the Lord will look at this fact. Some people in my ward are telling me that feeing anger and grief right now is wrong because my brother is out of his misery. Others tell me that anger and sadness are normal and acceptable. Who is right? I do feel happy for my brother but I am also angry at him and I keep finding myself crying and then feeling guilty about crying. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. diane
Relgion - a force for good?
Dean_Fox posted a topic in General DiscussionIs religion a force for good? The knee jerk reaction from most people who hold to a religious belief is "yes, of course it is." Then when you point out that religion is used to motivate people to commit suicide bombings they will likely concede that this isn't always the case. In one instance though someone said religion is always a force for good because the intentions are always good, even those of a suicide bomber. My reply was that "the path to hell is paved with good intentions". However the question got me thinking, is religion actually a force for anything? There are many definitions for religion around, one is: "A collection of practices, based on beliefs and teachings that are highly valued or sacred" My own take is that religion is the beliefs and teachings that are highly valued or sacred. The practices are seperate. There are many religions and many churches. I believe that while humans always have free will that it is the church and the way they encourage members to act that determines whether or not the church becomes a force for good or bad and this is regardless of the intentions of the church leaders of the individuals within the church. Take Islam. The teachings of Islam include concepts of peace, love and many other upstanding moral values and yet certain extremist sects, churches if you will, manage to use it to "radicalise" people and turn them in to suicide bombers. Islam as a religion is neither a force for good nor evil rather it is how the church teaches it that determines the acts of the attendees. I posit that religion is not a force for anything, that it is a catalyst around which churches are built. That it is church leaders and the individuals within the church that determine if the church is a force for good or not. I posit that many issues surrounding religion stem not from the religion but the presumption by some that religion is good therefore what the church commands under the trappings of religion must also be good. That the problems in most cases are not with the religion but with the church leaders. It's amazing how good teachings can be twisted to serve someone else's "greater good". Thoughts?