(Note: This post is one of a four-part series)
There is a series on Netflix called Thirteen Reasons Why, which tells the story of a young high school student who commits suicide. She records thirteen cassette tapes explaining the thirteen reasons for taking her life. Each reason has a person attached to it. These tapes are then distributed to the people who she feels led her to this fatal decision.
Some critics have raised concerns over the show. School counselors are dismayed that their role as a counselor has been minimized. They have seen that their impact has made a difference, but the show indicates otherwise. Some have seen a rise in suicide and self-hurt behavior at school. Psychologists are concerned that the impact of suicide is minimized outside of the school population, and that it is somewhat glamorized.
I would like to share my experience with suicide and what I’ve learned over the years.
My past was a difficult one with parents who were not involved in my emotional development. I had been molested before the age of five and no one helped me through the resulting disaster and my self-punishment. In fact, my mother told me she knew I was hurting myself but didn’t want to bother with it. I was filled with self-hate, shame, and guilt. I was bullied at school and didn’t have many friends. I turned to destructive behaviors to escape the despair I felt. At fifteen, I was ready to end my life.
Today, I am glad that I did not follow through with that decision. Those destructive emotions have been healed through many avenues of help. Today, I have a great husband, five wonderful children, two grand-treasures, and many good friends. I look back and see how much I’ve learned and I’m glad that I did not take my life. I have been completely healed of my ugly past, and I make a difference today in the lives of others. Especially because I’ve been through the ugly stuff. Over the next three weeks, I’d like to share thirteen reason why it is good to stay alive and to overcome.
Reason #1: Those who hurt you are broken
Over the years, I have learned that most people who bully, who hurt, who abuse, and who hate, are lashing out because something has happened to them that has perverse their logic. They resort to hurting others because, in some perverse way, it makes them feel better. More in control. The one who is inflicting damage is using you as an object to satisfy that cruel need. This is not your fault.
Reason #2: Your feelings are valid
What you are feeling is normal. If you are depressed, then there are chemicals that are lacking in your brain from a significant time of stress upon your body. Whether it’s emotional, physical, mental, or spiritual, your body is trying to constantly recover from these attacks. It depletes what your brain needs to function well. Your feelings are valid. However, you don’t have to stay in this emotional state. There are things that you can do to heal.
Next – Part 2