Hannah Baker decided to kill herself. Before she did, she made audio tapes, listing the thirteen people who contributed to her decision to end her life.
Frankly, at first, I thought she was selfish. Recording her audio tapes and letting each of those people dwell in their guilt for playing little parts in her death—that was cruel. There are few things more scarring than thinking “I should have known, and I should have done something.”
For my part, that “I should have known” thing spiralled to “am I really that selfish not to notice anyone else’s problems but my own?”
From there, it went to “I am a bad person.”
And then, “I’m such a joke to ever think I’m a good friend when someone I cared about can’t even bring to open up to me.”
Finally, everything summed up in three words: “I am useless.”
So yes, when someone tries or succeeds in killing themselves, it’s more scarring for the people around them. More scarring than anyone would like to admit.
I’m not saying that suicide is stupid, and I’m not saying that the people who ever contemplated about death are weak.
However, I don’t agree that many of the people who try to kill themselves just “want attention,” at least, not with the same kind of disgust that a lot of people associate it with. Because “want attention” is a far cry from what it really is—a call for help.
I know some of you might be rolling your eyes, thinking, “How could anything be so horrible for anyone to ever think of ending their lives?”
That’s the thing: you never know. Because no matter how mundane it seems from the outside, you have no idea how much deeper the scars are inside.
You don’t get to read people like open books. To be honest, even if you think you can, how much do you really know of the fictional characters that you read about? You get to know parts of their stories, but just parts that the author wants you to know.
And since real people are way more complex than fictional characters, you bet that those real people, with their real problems, think that those problems, no matter how mundane, are as real to them as yours are real to you.
Think of a big problem that you ever stressed over—your biggest problem, perhaps. Somewhere on this planet, with its seven billion other people, someone else might think that your big problem is mundane, so don’t ever say that people who contemplate on death are weak. We have very different experiences and capabilities, so we don’t get to judge anyone, not about that.
For those who ever had messy lives—messy enough to let you think of ending it all—I’m not saying that it’s okay for you to do it. It’s not. It’s never okay.
I said Hannah Baker was selfish for letting people feel the guilt that they had to feel when she ended her life. I stand by that.
Sure, we deserve to be selfish sometimes, but scarring people in the way that you are bound to, by ending your life, that isn’t an answer, nor is it a solution.
My lovelies, Hannah Baker gave thirteen reasons why she decided to gulp those pills to end her life. I will give you thirteen reasons not to.
Beginning tomorrow, and every day for the next thirteen days, I’ll give you reasons why suicide isn’t the answer. Many of them will fall on clichés, but we could all do with reminders.
I will tag the posts ThirteenReasonsWhy (no spaces) so that it will be easier to navigate later.
For anyone who is contemplating, knows of anyone who is contemplating, or is just plain curious, I’m telling you now—suicide is never an answer.