I think suicide is a extremly personal choice made by everyone.
It tests exactly how far we as individuals are willing to grant 100% and absolute freedom to someone we care about.
Its easy for people to say they would talk some one out of killing themselfs and give cute little slogans like "suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem"...
Its a terrible thing when someone we care about brings up the real converstaion about thier attempts to end thier own lives, nobody wants to be put in that situation. But some of us have been put in that situation and been faced with the very real fact that we as individuals do not have the right to end our own lives.
I can recall a very real converstation I had with my grandfather days before his death from panreatic cancer. The cancer had grown to the point it can stopped his liver function and he was suffering form jandance. He had days to live. He was in so much pain and he saw what it was doing to his family around him, he asked us to kill him. To end his and our suffering, I could relate with him 100% at that very momement.
To be faced with the fact that there simply is no other option other than death, I see no harm in letting that person choose the time of thier own demise.
Now, my grandfathers situation was hopeless, we can all agree on that. There are very few crude and heartless people in this would that would say, we needed to keep grandpa around those extra 3 painful days because he truely didn't know what he was asking for.
Here comes the real point... if every single day of the rest of your life you can only see heavy medication and pain, what gives us the viewer of that pain and medication the right to keep that person from the dignity of death?
I am some one who has delt with mental illness on a personal level in my father. I have seen what mental illness can do to a family, I have seen him sitting in tears on the couch with a shotgun in his hands asking us for reasons not to just end his pain and ours.
What right do we have in a society of personal freedoms and liberty to deny a given individual the right to end there own very personal pain?
*** I'm aware this is a very fked up converstation to have on xmass eve, but xmas isn't the fun happy holiday for everyone in this world, me being one of them ****
I read your post with sympathy, nodding throughtout. I have faced similar family issues myself. It's not fun.
If people are determined to end their own life they will - that's unquestionable. People discuss suicidal intentions for many reasons - because they are seeking attention, because they are desperate, because they are being honest. In my experience the conversations become matter-of-fact in the end if people are really serious about it - they have usually worked out a method, a time and date, and feel some sense of relief that if things get any worse, that is their fall-back plan.
Naturally, it is the people who have attempted suicide before who are the most high-risk.
Do people have a right to do it? Unquestionably - it's not illegal anymore - or at least, the law is not enforced. For people who consider it seriously, they can see no other option at the time. People argue that it's a selfish act, but in fact, most suicidal people believe strongly that they are a burden to the people closest to them, and that in some way they will make the lives of those they leave behind easier, not harder.
It's hard to fathom things being so bad you would consider it. But life can be unkind and everyone has a story. Some people can cope with what life deals them, and some people cannot cope with what we can. For some people who get no 'lucky breaks' no 'good luck' life is exhausting. You can only hope that they confide in someone, and that that act itself is positive for them - and gives them hope they'll find acceptance elsewhere.