As I sat down to eat dinner last night, a program came on the radio about teen suicide. I was shocked to learn that 5,000 young people, from 10 to 24, commit- or attempt to commit- suicide every day.
That’s an incredible 60,000 teen suicides every year. And the sad thing is, it is only increasing.
But that’s not all.
The guest on this radio show, talking about what causes it and how to prevent it, told the story of a talk he gave at Liberty University. He asked the students filling the auditorium “Who here has someone close to them that suffers from depression, has tried committing suicide, or has even committed suicide?”
Over 98% of the students raised their hands.
We live in a dark world, folks.
And unfortunately, current culture only provokes it.
Many people think it is a hatred of life that makes a person say “my life isn’t worth living” and kill themselves.
While this may be true for some, it is by far not the reason for the vast majority of cases.
Let’s look at some cultural reasons for people to think about suicide:
#1: Criticism by other people can lower one’s self-esteem to the state of asking “what’s the point of trying?”.
#2: Neglect plays a massive role. In a modern society that promotes the all-possessing goal of ‘make as much money as you can and you’ll be happy’, so many parents work so much that the only time their kids see them is bedtime and maybe breakfast, all other time possessed by either school or sleep. Families at large rarely sit and talk anymore, let alone about issues such as this one. And that leads to my third point…
#3: Social Media + video games can wreak so much havoc on the human mind, rewiring it, especially in adolescents, in ways that only antagonize the issue. So many teens look for approval from the world via social media, and if they don’t get it, are crushed.
There is now a video game on-line whose focus is on harming oneself. Not surprisingly, with the release of the ‘game’ (a horrific term for something so grotesque) came a huge spike in suicide rates across all age groups, but primarily in the group I focus on here.
#4: An evolutionary perspective on life. This is the basic message behind what is taught in most public schools:
“You are worthless. You are not destined for anything. You have no purpose. You live out a meaningless existence, then are buried in the ground and become food for other creatures. You don’t go anywhere, you only decompose, and the world moves on. You were created by a random jumble of different tissues that somehow formed a human being. No life has meaning, and that is the way it will always be.”
This is a poem I wrote, titled ‘Depression’, focused primarily on what thoughts might go through a person’s head while dealing with depression:
It haunts me like a nightmare, yet doesn’t leave with the morning sun;
I hate it with a passion, yet equally embrace it;
The Shadows, ever-present, threaten to swallow me whole;
Time goes on, but I remain in the void.
Does anyone care?
Am I alone in this dark universe, surrounded by… nothingness?
I feel alone; like everyone I have ever loved has abandoned me,
Left me to rot in the confines of my mind.
Can anyone hear me?
Can anyone see who I truly am through the fear-tainted glass?
Is there anyone out there who can break it & embrace me for who I am?
I wait, yet no one comes.
Do I matter?
Have I made a difference?
Can anyone say I have changed their lives?
My life is useless; I only waste breaths in a world of more important things.
I hold my head in agony as the demons of my mind rampage,
Filling it with thoughts of the darkest kind.
I should throw myself off the bridge; would anyone notice?
Or would I be just another body in a cold stone morgue?
No one cares, & no one ever will;
My mind is a private hell
And my body an empty shell.
Can you see now, why so many feel worthless?
Like their lives have no meaning, and they won’t change anything by killing themselves because they had no purpose?
Well, guess what people.
There is a way to have meaning for your life.
There is a way to make a difference.
Believing in the Lord Jesus, and believing His Glorious Father, God, Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, made you in his image, knit you together in your mother’s womb, created you uniquely to make a difference, created everything with a purpose and for a reason, can make all the difference in the world.
I have friends who struggle with depression. Yes, even one who attempted suicide once. But the message I just gave you changed their lives.
I’m not saying it’s a cure-all. I myself battle against depression. The difference is I know who stands behind me, I know where I’m going, and I know I have a purpose.
For you people out there who struggle with depression and- may God forbid it- suicidal thoughts, here are some bible verses for you to look up:
Remember that there are so many people out there who want to talk with you, if only you’d ask them. But most importantly, God is always there to talk to, 24-7-52-∞.
Talk with God, and remember that you are never forgotten, never unloved, never left behind, never without a friend, and most importantly:
You are never alone.
If you’d like to chat with me on this subject, or just want someone to talk to, drop me a comment below and I’ll reply as soon as I can.
Until next time…
‘May the road rise to meet you;
The wind be always at your back,
May the sun be warm upon your face,
and the rain fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand.’
- Irish Blessing
~~ The Lucky Craftsman