Why is death considered so horrible, and why does suicide cause such angst?

One of my TBM brothers took his own life.  It cause a great deal of pain to my TBM mother, but when she was 80 years old, with a great deal of medical problems and in a terrible amount of pain because of a botched pacemaker lead replacement, she asked for the plug to be pulled.  My TBM father didn’t honor her request.

I’m sure I would have honored her request, but I don’t blame my father in the least.  He was brainwashed to believe it was a sin, and he knew mother better than I did, so it was his call.

If I reach the place where mental and/or physical pain becomes greater than the joy I have in living, I will have no problem checking-out.

When I was a believer, I thought suicide was a sin, of course.  However, in the years since, my views have changed dramatically.  I now think it should be a personal choice, and it should be legal for it to be assisted.  Appropriate precautions should be in place to prevent murder of course, but we shouldn’t have to jump through too many hoops to have help in checking-out of this life with the least pain possible.

I’ve heard the argument that it’s extremely selfish because it hurts loved-ones too much.

My reply is that I’m sure it hurts loved ones, but if we are in a terrible amount of pain, then it’s the loved ones that are selfish to demand that we remain so.  If it appears to others that we have a hope of recovery from pain, then let them argue the point with us, but they should have no right to demand that we remain in pain.

 I like TruthR’s reply to that argument and have her permission to repeat part of it here.  She said:   “My role in life, how I live it or choose to end it is not based on pleasing others, I don't go out of my way to hurt others but I am not responsible for their view or reaction to how I choose to live or end my life.  People make choices everyday that slowly kill themselves."

I also like Tom Wootton’s reply:  “The fact that you can’t handle your emotions does not give you the right to dictate my life! If it did, would you have the right to take my life because I made you angry? It seems that the most selfish act is demanding control of my very life to satisfy your emotional needs.  http://blogs.psychcentral.com/bipolar-advantage/2010/03/suicide-pro...

We spend a great deal of time and money to prevent suffering, so why is it illegal for a doctor to relieve our suffering in this way?  We often put-down animals out of compassion.  Why do we have less compassion for human beings?

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I didn't read an opinion here about how you'd feel if your child committed suicide.  Mine nearly did, and was on life support.  It's a different kind of pain than you have with a sibling, or a parent.  Guilt is involved, and I'm not sure I could live with the pain.  My religious belief allows that God is completely loving and understands mental dysfunction that precludes suicide.  So that's not an issue, nor was it when I was a mormon.  Pulling a plug on someone is not suicide, and has never been official church doctrine, yet I saw loved ones suffer time and time again as I worked in nursing as a hospice nurse.  I think there are traditions in the church that lead one to believe this is suicide, but in reality, I don't think the doctrine supports it, nor does any other Christian doctrine.  If a medicine makes you sick, do you choose to take it?  If it makes you sick, and you take it, and you still aren't going to get well, where's the logic in hanging on to this physical body?  That one I don't get.  And those who commit suicide will be in heaven.  But for those left behind, the pain can be ruinous.
Thanks for a mother's perspective Pollypinks.

Wow!.  Where to begin,... I'll start by saying that I do believe that some form of euthanasia should be permitted in extreme medical cases and that doctors, patients and their family members should be able to petiton for their loved ones if the need should arrive without criminal backlash.  But because there are sinister people in the world that would take advantage. I think the situation should be regulated and reviewed by third parties that can look at each situation objectively to prevent someone from commiting actual murder.   

Now, in regards to an individual taking their own life,...  In July it will be the third anniversay since my brother took his life.  It was the 2nd time.  His first attempt as a teenager was thwarted by my grandmother.  He was finally successsful at age 39. 

My brother started out a sweet soul, he was the families little peacemaker, and protector of his younger brothers and sisters and had so much talent and potential, but he also had a very dark side, that when he allowed it to take him over would block out the sun.  He made dreadful mistakes that literally ruined his life.  He was in jail for serveral years for selling drugs.  He became very addicted to cocaine and I think Meth at the end.  After he got out of jail he tried and was successful at turning his life around for a time, but in the end the darkness took over and he lost everything again,... He was dark and contolling over his wife and kids and everyone around him.  He was not a good husband,.. his backwards thinking prevented him from being a good father all though he loved his children very much.   But in spite of his darkness and weakness he could suddenly be very charming and kind and do selfless things for others.  From what I can piece together, he decided to take his life when he got cancer again. He had no more health insurance and refused treatment.  He got very sick, was bed ridden for about a month. He left one night and didn't return.  The police found him in his car 2 days later with an empty bottle of pills and a plastic bag over his head.   Sorry to be so graphic, but that's what it is.  I was not close with my brother at the end.  He had long cut himself off from me or anybody that would have tried to help him and threatend his wife and kids to prevent them from contacting me. 


Since we don't really know what happens after we die, has his suffering ended?  I don't know.  Maybe it continues unresolved... or maybe it all just ends,... Were my brothers wife and kids better off without him around?  Some would argue that they were.  My sister in law, became a stronger person, she found out she could take care of herself and her kids better than she thought.  The darkness that was over the house was gone and lifted.  My sister in law found a new man to love, something she never thought would happen.  My brother left them with no money, but he also, left them with out crushing medical debt and bills, the house and car were paid for, if he lived to fight the cancer they would have had to get a loan against the house to pay for it.  maybe thisos what motivated his final act. 

But,.. We have no idea what the future brings.  For instance, if he had waited a few weeks he may have been around to prevent a tradgedy that occurred involving his step son that resulted in an accidental shooting death of his friend.  My nephew is now in prison for 10 years.  My brother may have been around to do something that may have prevented that tragic loss for the parents of that young man who died, who are suffering so much now.  If he had decided to stick it out a while longer, maybe he would have prevented a child from being hit by a car or something about his medical case may have helped doctors find a cure to help someone else.  I know that sounds far fetched, but stranger things have happend. 

So I think I ask now, Is it only our decision?  Are we in fact only responsible for ourselves.  Disconnected from others and are all relationships delusional, and co dependent or are we, whether we like it or not, completly connected and dependent on others and others on us.  Even those we don't know. 

Do we have the moral right to remove ourselves without regards to the consequences, any more than we have the right to remove others from this world.  I'm heart broken to think of the pain my brother must have felt, I didn't want him to suffer.  I wold give almost anything now to have been there in his last moments to prevent him from doing this. But maybe I had no right to interfere.  As I mentioned earlier maybe in long run everyone is better off. 

The problem is we don't know,... is it better to live and see?  Choose life?  I too have suffered and felt there was no way out, and been disappointed, but so many things came out well for me that were completely unexpected.  That is the way life is... We are all going to die eventually.  Can't avoid it.  But is it the wise thing to hasten it?  Is is moral?  Is it really what is best for us and for others?  I don't have the answers just some thoughts and questions...  is it selfish for us to  to ask others to stay and choose to find a way to make themselves happy or it selfish to leave and expect others to deal with it.  Does death take away all responsibility. ???

Thanks for sharing your story veryhappy, and for your thoughts.


I'm a little troubled and perplexed by your calling me and the moderators a "Triad".  For one, there are four of us (me, Don, MM, & Truth).  Two, you use it in such a way as to appear mocking or degrading.  We aren't an elitist group mingling among the dross.  We are members of LAM, same as anybody.  I don't see myself in any sort of position of status, power, popularity or control over anyone else.  I merely fill the role of owner and governor of LAM, but do not take that roll seriously enough for it to go to my head nor to wield authority in such a way as to subjugate others.

Also, you assume much to think TruthR has the support of everyone else on LAM.  Not that she doesn't deserve it, but personality differences among other factors often pit many a member against us as moderators rather than in line with us as you presume.  Our task is often a thankless job and is accompanied by much more behind the scenes deliberation, consulting and stress than many a member would care to put up with nor dedicate so much voluntary time to.  I'm not suggesting we demand nor deserve respect, but a little gratitude or compassion is appreciated from time to time.

As for suicide being discussed in your "Unreachable Bar" thread, it was Astro Logic who discussed it there first, who was also the source of your original reference and post in the first place.  Truth may have added some of her own thoughts and perhaps took them beyond your desired interest in that thread, but that is the nature of forum discussions at times and it seems unfair (in my observation and estimation) to project your frustration of said tangent being discussed by those with whom it strikes a sensitive nerve due to their own personal battles with it.  Perhaps more attempts at understanding rather than dismissing would bring about a more desirable resolution.

As always, thanks for sharing your experience,

Your job is not one I could handle Micah.  Same for the other 3 moderators. It would be too much stress for me to handle.  Thanks to you all for your time and energy.
I'm getting the feeling you seem to think of this as a game or contest of who trumps who with the last post.  Not sure why that matters or what your intent is behind this seemingly cryptic post which did little to address my confusion of why the seemingly derogatory use of "triad" to describe the natural and uncorrelated responses from myself, MM and Truth.  We each just speak our minds as I would hope any LAM-anite would in the forum and don't "gang tackl[e]" threads as you suggest.  Unless I am failing to correctly interpret sarcasm or attempts at humor, your use of "Triad" borders on what appears to be an attempt to defame or discredit the three of us.  Perhaps you can elaborate as I am really not grasping why you take issue with us when no one else has come forward with the same observation or concern of a "Triad" gang tackling threads.
:)  I will go to Mass tonight and pray for revelation on the issue :)  When I feel I have sufficient revelation on the issue I will return and share the constip...I mean revelation with others here.  If I do not return that means the kneeler has come down on my foot and i am stuck in the pew.

.. crawdad, or Quad-ad or something??  
Can you point me to the specific comment where Truth is lying according to you?  She asked you directly for evidence of her misrepresenting your comments.  As you have yet to provide that evidence, or perhaps I missed your post, you appear to either be dodging to protect your own innocence or lack thereof, or perhaps you missed her comment (click link above).  I'm all for seeing both sides of the coin.  If you'd rather private message me the comment or link I'm all for that too.  I am not interest in who is wrong or right, only in what each individual's experience is or was.  Accusing Truth of lying without providing the evidence seems rather demeaning or attacking.  I've read over both this and the other thread and fail to see where she is outright lying.  I read some of her assumptions which may not be according to your intent, but suggesting that she lied is to suggest she knew your thoughts and intent and purposefully misrepresented you anyways.  Being that only you can know your thoughts and intent, that doesn't constitute lying but falls under assuming based on available experience to Truth at that time.  Make sense?


I think you falsely assume that I read or know of every conversation or thread that occurs on LAM.  Chat logs are not stored and get cleared of all remaining post each night.  I have no idea what conversation with Nathan you are talking about and how it relates to anything that has been brought up so far.  If you wish to take issue further with me as the manager/owner, or any of my moderator volunteers, please do so in a private message so as not distract further from this topic or defame any of us further.  I will gladly review any forum posts that you can point me to, to prove your case.  If anyone else has questions or concerns about the moderating and management of LAM, my door is open.

I don't feel that there is a need to be sorry.  In the issue of suicide we are dealing with a far more important issue, we are dealing with a person, a falable human.  Sometimes these humans need the understanding and love that just does not make it with a all to brief and to the point email.


I value humans and their life experience :), above aaaaaaaall things. :) 




  I feel you are a good person, of great value and I enjoy our good relationship.  I feel, my view here, that you are a good person, and you are of immense value where and as you are.  Truth, you determine your value, your validations and what makes you tick.  I like you and enjoy sharing with you.


The hardest thing we do, and we all have experience in this, is to take it day by day :)






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