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Friday, July 21, 2017

Suicidal People Are Not Your Punchline

I want to talk about something that has been heavily discussed and commented about on social media the past 18 hours or so: the news of Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park, committing suicide. Since reports of his death broke, I have seen fans who loved his music- grew up on it, even- grieving and wondering how this happened. But I've also seen trolls, keyboard warriors, "internet badasses" taking to social media to ridicule, mock and make light of the fact that Bennington felt so hopeless and low that he thought the only way to stop the pain was to take his own life. And I am nothing short of livid and disgusted.

Maybe these horrible people have never dealt with mental illness and/or substance abuse firsthand. Maybe they figure since they can't relate, the best solution is to hide behind their computer screens and write appalling things that I can almost GUARANTEE they wouldn't say in "real life" to the face of anyone who has struggled with these demons or loves someone who has/had struggled. Or maybe there's no real reason for it at all and these people are just truly that callous, unfeeling and nasty.

Whatever the reason behind it is, I am personally inviting those pathetic beings to SHUT. THE. FUCK. UP. Shut your fucking mouth. Stop being a bad person for thirty seconds and think about the impact of what your typed words may have on someone reading them. Sure, the dead can't see what a heinous human being you are but those left behind CAN, and they take it to heart. What a sad life you must have if you get your rocks off making light of the fact that someone was suffering so badly that they could no longer see the light. While violence isn't the answer (although sometimes I truly feel like it is when it comes to ignorant people like this who can't process a rational thought anyway but might respond to a good throat punch), I'd love to line some of you up and slap you right in the face.

I have been to these dark places. I have felt so low and alone and unloved that I swallowed as many pills as I could get my hands on then laid and waited, only to be thrusted back towards the light in enough time to call an ambulance for myself. During the last year of my marriage, I drank myself into oblivion to the point where my blood alcohol content was at a level that would have put a grown man down and most certainly should have killed me. Yet each time, despite inviting the darkness to just take over and let me stop hurting, I always saw a bit of light and fought back. It's why I spent most of the first half of 2017 either hospitalized or receiving intensive outpatient care. I'm well aware that I was more than once teetering between life and death and that through some sort of saving grace I fell on the right side of it all. I could have easily tipped the other way.

I will never be smug, holier than thou or condescending towards someone with mental health and substance abuse issues. I admittedly was very frustrated with someone in my family who we lost to addiction in 2016 and I will regret it till the day I die. Sometimes the addiction wins no matter how hard we pray or try. Sometimes things just don't right themselves.

I'm not ashamed of what I've been through which is why I'm posting this blog. If you feel the need to run your mouth to someone, run it to me. I'll gladly take your bitch ass on because I'm stronger now, strong enough to fight on the behalf of those who can't either because they aren't here anymore or are still struggling with their demons. You don't get to fucking dehumanize someone for being fragile. You don't get to sit there and call them cowards. The way I see it, the only coward is you- the asshole making light of something incredibly serious. I honestly hope you can't relate to how Chester Bennington, or myself, or the millions of others who have suffered and lost (or won) this horrible, dark, soul-consuming battle have felt. I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. But your ignorance doesn't give you license to be volatile. Think before you fucking speak. Read your comment out loud before you hit send and ask yourself, "If this was my family member who died, would I want to read this? Would I want to let someone speak about them this way?" You might claim otherwise but deep down you know your answer is unequivocally, "NO." You wouldn't let someone talk about your mother/father/brother/sister/cousin/friend that way. You'd be livid.

Think about that next time you decide to spend your free time being a complete asshole.

And if you're struggling with addiction, depression, BPD, anything- I am far enough in my own recovery from those places to offer you help if you're stretching your hand out for it. You are NEVER alone and you are always worthy. No matter how low you feel, there is always someone out there who loves you and wants you to thrive and live out what little time we have here happily and fully. Don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

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