• Wallows
    I’ve struggled with impulsivity my whole life. I’ve dealt with mental illness my entire adult life.Noah Te Stroete

    Has the impulsivity ever resulted in bad decisions? And, what kind of mental illness if you don't mind me asking? I struggle with psychosis (My p-doc tells me it's a psychotic disorder; but, I'm inclined to believe it's some schizotypal traits of paranoia), depression, and anxiety.

    Patience is difficult when one is under a lot of stress. I have found that removing the stressors helps a lot, and where that isn’t possible, meditation helps. However, sometimes people are in very high stress situations that they can see no easy way out of. That’s when they need to find the courage to ask for help.Noah Te Stroete

    Why do you think it's so hard to reach out for help? Is it denial that one is incapable of taking care of one's self that is the barrier here? On a personal level, I don't like going for therapy. It's just uncomfortable asking for help, as a man. I don't like opening the wounds and going to talk therapy also. It's uncomfortable talking about one's issues.

    I find that praying as a form of meditation, asking God (or the universe or your inner self if you prefer) for patience has been helpful to me.Noah Te Stroete

    Personally, given my adoration for reason, I take the stance that science may be able one day to address my issues better in the future. So, hope is as much an important factor in preventing suicide as much as being patient is.
  • Wallows
    Isn't self-destruction the very definition of suicide?BrianW

    I'm not quite sure. I think that suicide isn't the same as self-destruction. Might need some expanding on my part; but, it doesn't seem like that's the intent of suicide. The intent in most cases is the cessation of suffering or pain. That suicide is an act of ultimate self-destruction is a separate issue.
  • Wallows
    Oh nevermind @Noah Te Stroete, we talked about this in PM. Sorry, my memory is finicky.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    I have schizoaffective disorder with depression according to my doctor. My wife says I get manic at times, too, but my doctor hasn’t observed this. I don’t go to therapy either, but I am medicated.

    As a Stoic, you might want to meditate on living in accordance with the Logos if you prefer not to pray.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    Has the impulsivity ever resulted in bad decisions?Wallows

    Yes. I’ve overdosed five times.
  • Wallows
    I don’t go to therapy either, but I am medicated.Noah Te Stroete

    Coming from someone that doesn't like going to therapy, I am intrigued why so many patients with mental illness find it hard to commit themselves to get better by going to therapy. Do you think it's akin to opening a wound that hurts?

    I asked one of my group therapy counsellors if many people don't show up for therapy, and she said that it's true. I think this is restricted to males only given the way society perceives the need for men to look after themselves and such.
  • Wallows
    Yes. I’ve overdosed five times.Noah Te Stroete

    Oh, sorry to hear. I've been institutionalized and in hospitals myself quite often.

    Do you think half the battle is just coming to terms (as harsh as they are) with one's diagnosis?
  • Noah Te Stroete
    I just don’t find it helpful. I know how I’m supposed to think and behave. I just find it extremely difficult in practice. Plus, I’ve had some very unempathic counselors that have turned me off to therapy.
  • Wallows
    I know how I’m supposed to think and behave. I just find it extremely difficult in practice.Noah Te Stroete

    I feel you. It doesn't bother me anymore that I'm different than other people. I guess I've come to terms in my own way with my diagnosis. That entails living with my mother and just sucking the suck factor in life up.
  • BrianW

    I'm sure cessation of pain is one of the reasons. But the mode still remains by committing an act of destruction of self. There are many ways to alleviate pain, drug use is one of those ways, I'm just saying reasons don't change anything because the act of suicide is not justifiable unlike killing someone where self-defence is ok.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    I think it is very easy for the non mentally ill to tell you that everyone has problems. The problem with that is they have never been extremely mentally ill, so their problems don’t equate to ours. Our minds or brains work against us as the mentally ill.

    I’m not sure what “coming to terms with one’s diagnosis” entails, though.
  • Wallows
    I'm just saying reasons don't change anything because the term suicide is not justifiable unlike killing someone where self-defence is ok.BrianW

    Suicide can be justified in some way. But, if you have a family or other people that need you, then no, I don't think suicide is the right choice. There are alternatives to getting better.
  • Wallows
    I’m not sure what “coming to terms with one’s diagnosis” entails, though.Noah Te Stroete

    Well, I was institutionalized in the military. It was a bitter pill to swallow for me that I couldn't become a soldier or repair ejection seats for the Air Force. I finally came to terms with my diagnosis sometime after this with the act of going on disability. For a short period of time I fantasized becoming a police officer; but, given my diagnosis, nope that would never happen. Entertaining fantasies I can; but, realize them I cannot.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    I’m sorry for your struggles. I’m in the same boat.
  • BrianW
    Suicide can be justified in some way.Wallows

    Yeah, for people whose life conditions no longer allow the extraction of utility from them. For them it's ok because we judge lives by the value they provide. People who are already useless through no fault of their own are entitled to suicide because their value has already been taken from them. So, in a way, it's not really suicide, just an end to their physical structure. This is why I think people who cause damage to their bodies or negate the utility of their lives should be considered suicides regardless of time frame.

    Suppose someone dies after years of being in drug induced stupor, a drug problem caused by his own carelessness, even though the final cause of death is unrelated to his drug problem, ultimately, I believe it is still a suicide because he devalued his own life by his own actions. Other than disease (including aging) or acts of infringement upon one's will by another, I think the rest of the causes of death can be considered suicides. Some may be accidental but most, especially the ones with larger time frames are almost always deliberate to some degree.
  • Oriana
    I often wish people viewed life the way they do a movie; if somebody wants to get up and leave, that’s ok because everyone has different opinions about what they want to watch. You may want them to stay because you are enjoying the movie and want the other person to as well, or maybe you just want to spend time with him or her, but you wouldn’t stand up in the theater and shout at them if they tried to leave. You can be extremely sad for a while, but then you have to go back to watching the movie.

    After all, it’s a long movie, and you shouldn’t try to force people to sit through the whole thing if they don’t want to.
  • Wallows

    Nice comparison. Though treating life as an ongoing movie seems somewhat constrained. Maybe more like a Hilbert cinema with an infinite amount of movies playing. Though some get stuck in some uncomfertably scary horror movies to kind of beat the analogy into the dirt.
  • Emmanuele
    The main idea of being dead is to be clear of all preoccupations. You can do that right now:
    - Forget about the debt and consider it only when asked or forced upon.
    - Forget about the people and remember only when needed.

    Do you remember your rejection? Your solitude? I don't.
    The ultimate satisfaction that comes from your existence is none at all. To be strong and to endure is to suffer. We can leave that to the idiots. To live in peace is not to be strong nor to endure, but to let go.
  • AppLeo
    Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Sometimes suicide can be justified. But usually the sadness and hopelessness people experience doesn't last forever, so they should just hold out for a little longer until things get better. In the future, they won't be suicidal anymore.
  • TheMadFool
    May be someone already said this. Too long thread to read it all.

    Suicide is an individual decision, implying that we have to tailor an anti-suicide argument to the individual. There can be no general argument against suicide. Some circumstances may make life unbearable such as extreme torture and painful incurable diseases. To say I have the argument for all people wanting to end their lives would be an affront to such people, to not speak of being irrational.

    However, what if everybody wanted to commit suicide. I remember the Heaven's Gate cult. I don't know if you know of it but I believe around 20 people committed mass suicide in the hope that their souls would be taken to another world on an approaching comet.

    I don't know if such an argument is possible.

    The reasons for mass suicide can range from pain or the expectation of it to bizarre cultist beliefs.

    Again, we face the same problem. It's not possible to construct a general one-size-fits-all argument.

    That said, the most common cause of suicide is extreme depression.

    Of course, the cause of depression will differ with the individual, landing us back to square one on constructing a general argument for depressed people but one religion, which is more of a philosophy, Buddhism, provides an answer.

    In Buddhism suffering is axiomatic. Everything about Buddhism is built on that noble truth. The cause of suffering, per Buddhism, is ignorance of impermanence and the ensuing craving/clinging to things ephemeral like objects, people, values, etc. As you can see, if we realize that everything is impermanent and subject to destruction we understand the pointlessness of craving for them to the extent that loss would produce depression severe enough to commit suicide. It's a completely rational outlook on life and therefore can form a good argument against severe depression - nipping the problem in the bud as it were.

    Of course it may be argued that since everything is passing why not prepone the inevitable death. To that the answer would be that realizing the truth of impermanence and the foolishness of craving actually, paradoxically, produces contentment and not depression, making us happier than if we didn't know it.

    I don't know of any other religion that is more rational than Buddhism. It's 2000 years old and still makes sense.

    This is strange: To understand death makes life happier
  • andrewk
    Here are two arguments that work for me:

    Firstly, my observation from various funerals I have seen is that there are often many people that love the deceased and are greatly saddened by their death. Some of them the deceased would have known about. Some are surprising. Call me an optimist but my impression is that, except in the case of outright bastards, there are generally more people that like and are positively affected by a person than they are aware of.

    Secondly, it is possible to do a lot of good in this life. If one has spare time, there are an abundance of volunteering opportunities in which one can make the lives of others better. If one has little free time but a steady income (most people have one or the other), one can give to causes that make a material difference to people's lives. Oxfam is an easy general one, but there are great niche ones too, like those that fund medical activities in developing countries to fix things like cataract or glaucoma blindness or fistulas. One doesn't need to give a lot to make a great deal of difference. For every year that one can put off one's demise, an awful lot of suffering of others can be prevented.
  • Wallows
    Of course it may be argued that since everything is passing why not prepone the inevitable death. To that the answer would be that realizing the truth of impermanence and the foolishness of craving actually, paradoxically, produces contentment and not depression, making us happier than if we didn't know it.

    I don't know of any other religion that is more rational than Buddhism. It's 2000 years old and still makes sense.

    This is strange: To understand death makes life happier

    Hear hear. This is good. Why do you think the answer of impermanence and the foolishness of craving produce paradoxically contentment and satisfaction?
  • CaZaNOx
    There's something comforting about wanting to become nothing. It has no qualities or properties that define it, apart from the lack of properties about it.

    What are some thoughts about this property of nothingness that makes people want to become nothing?

    My argument is among the lines that the idea of "becoming nothing" is a logical error.

    I know this isn't something that will likley help people in a sucidal state. However it helped me.

    The argument:
    If you want to commit suicide you evaluate your current situation. Based on the evaluation you conclude that you should take an action to change the future situation. The goal of the action suicide, is that your future you (you f.e.1s in the future) will be better of.
    However if you kill yourself there won't be a future you*.
    This reasoning is selfcontradictory. Since you choose to use effort in order for your future you to be better of. However since this future you only exists virtually in the moment you decide to take the action and the action itself denies the future you becoming real the action denies the justification for the action.
    The reason for the logical mistake is an equating your virtual future you now with the real future you.

    If we look at your statement about the comforting aspect of becoming nothing we can now identify two things.
    1) The comforting element is the motivation or in other words the benefits you ascribe to the virtual future you.
    2) The becoming nothing won't happen. Since it is predicated on a the virtual you transitioning from one state (now) into another state (nothing). While in reality you will neither transition, nor will you be in another state. You will simply cease to exist. You won't be or become anything since being or becoming implies your existance that won't any longer be the case.

    *Worldviews that seperate mind/soul and body and therefore see suicide as the ending of bodily pain while not negating the soul like f.e. Christianity usually have a doctrine of getting punished if one chooses to commit suicide to prevent suicide.
  • Purple Pond
    Although I think about suicide often, and constantly wish I wasn't alive, I don't take the idea of me committing suicide seriously.

    Even if I had the guts and the ability (which I don't), the four main reasons I don't commit suicide are because:
    1) I can't do such a thing to my family. It would rip them apart emotionally.
    2) Most attempted suicides don't result in suicide, and I can get seriously injured for the rest of my life. Making my life worse off.
    3) I have a whole life ahead of me, and since no one can predict the future, life is uncertain. Things can, and do, change for the better.
    4) The process of killing yourself is very painful.
  • schopenhauer1
    @Wallows@Bitter Crank@andrewk@Noah Te Stroete@unenlightened

    What does one do when one is born but doesn't want to do what is required of being alive?

    Sure, you can throw out some plan of action like the ole Stoic program, but in real life, the fact that this is even required, is a bummer. People are focused on minutia throughout the day that is required of them. Focused on this or that. The world requires more refined minutia-mongering as society moves from hunter-gatherers to post-industrial economies. For what little meritocracy is left is for those focused on the minute. If you know your specialty well you get to move up (if it isn't taken by nepotism already). The harder you focus your attention on an organization's little orbit of ideas and needs, that is what society wants. Production. Mind taken away from one's own thoughts.

    But then what are one's own thoughts? Just the babble of a linguistic animal that cannot quiet its brain. Then Zen. Zen tries to bring one to the "Now" or is it the "Nowhere"? But why do we need that program? Like the Stoics, it is just adjusting expectations and focus. Why do we need to do this to be healthy of mind? Another requirement of living "well" they say. What if one doesn't want to do any of this, third world, second world, first world requirements? Being born is the issue.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    It sounds like you may have clinical depression. Have you thought about seeking help for that?
  • unenlightened
    What does one do when one is born but doesn't want to do what is required of being alive?schopenhauer1

    Honestly, I would like to say something helpful, but if you are up shit creek and refuse to paddle, then you will remain up shit creek. There is only one thing that will lift the curse, which is to think one kind thought. Until then you are trapped indefinitely in wanting and wanting not.

  • schopenhauer1

    I just don't buy into the idea that the individual must change his/her attitude. The fact that one can even "choose" to do so means that this is not the default. Not being a default means we have to "buy into" something. What is this something? Usually it is society's need for production, and for the individual to be compliant in sharing in the productive output- preferably with joy and with ever increasing results.
  • Noah Te Stroete
    I am an INFP personality. It sounds like you may be as well. The number one recommended occupation for someone with this personality profile is poet. One may also be happy being an artist or philosopher. It seems that society doesn’t have a good place for our personalities given the low demand for such jobs. I’m blessed to have a support system, however. Not everyone is so lucky.
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