After everything that has happened with the late Robin Williams committing suicide, I thought about my life in 2011 when I contemplated suicide. A few things were going on in my life at the time: I was writing a novel based on my life (enduring sexual abuse, and living with a mental illness), and trying to reach out to a dear friend who in the end turned her back from me and the Truth. People were scoffing me for reaching out to her and I was crushed because there were emotional ties to this friend. I felt like my life was in vain and wrote a suicide note (which is in the same novel). I was scoffed at again. So it left me a question: Why people are oblivious when others have been sexually abused and/or think of suicide until it hits someone in their own family or someone in their circle?
I asked a friend of mine who is a therapist (Jodi Aman) to share her thoughts. I'll comment after her response:
"I guess people don't mean to be oblivious. Suicide and sexual abuse are too horrible for people to think about. They are both such an attack on the soul. Their own fear and guilt take over and they either judge the situation, or avoid it.
I know it is horribly invalidating to someone who has been abused, when no one seems to see. On the other hand, they are often scared for someone to find out as well. Same with people who have thought about or attempted suicide. There is so much (albiet unwarranted) shame involved. Some of the isolation is self inflicted because of this shame and fear of being hurt. And this is what I try to break down because building a community is foremost what we all need to feel safe, worthy and happy.
Also, you can't blame people for not thinking about what is not on their radar. There are so many things to think about. We think about what comes into our consciousness. Like I only think about chicken food because I raise chickens. So we think about sexual abuse and suicide when it comes into our consciousness- i.e., when someone near us has the experience."
I totally get what Jodi is saying and she made a lot of valid points. What I do when I speak (and what I tried to convey in my novel - which is entitled Deaf, Dumb, Blind & Stupid by the way), is that we need to be more proactive and more loving towards people outside our circle. It's real easy to glorify celebrities when they're hurting, but scoff at your next-door neighbor when they're going through the same hurt. Everybody deserves the same amount of love and compassion. Just like it's easy to scoff at people when they've had a rough childhood but turn around and cry for help when one of your children suffer the same thing they were scoffing others about.
In summary: hurt is real, some people may not know they have choices to make their lives better than what they endured. We have a responsibility (if we are agents of change), to serve others out of a heart of gratitude. We have been so blessed regardless of what we have endured, so don't keep that blessing to just you or your elite circle.
The Mayne Man