“In the someday, what’s that ‘S’ sound?”

Title taken from Nirvana, “I Hate Myself And Want To Die”

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I’ve read several posts of late stating September is Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month. I recently blew the mind of a mental health social worker by dropping the term “suicidal ideation” during a clinical assessment. He went on to coyly suggest that, as “suicidal ideation” is a term most people are apparently unfamiliar with, I had perhaps researched various mental illnesses in an effort to make myself seem more symptom-afflicted than I actually am. Fuck you.

I think about suicide nearly every day. Not always in the sense of serious contemplation of a final solution for myself, although the rare particularly bad period might have me going that far, mentally. Usually it is just the casual acknowledgement that suicide remains an option, a way out, as sort of a morbid and deranged comfort blanket. Usually, I just have the thought, and then shrug, and then move on with my day.

But, as someone who does display symptoms of suicidal ideation, and in the spirit of this time period apparently set aside for awareness of such, I will say that being unbiased and non-judgementally supportive of The Afflicted is about the best and only thing one can do to try and prevent potential suicide in a client, friend or loved one. Reducing the stigmas surrounding mental illness will go a long fucking way towards reducing the chances that a person in suffering will pursue a final solution to their pain. Showing support, empathy, kindness, and simply being “there” for a person is the best way to make them feel safe and secure, and to foster an environment wherein they may choose to open up and ask for help when they need it.

Beyond that, it really isn’t up to you. It isn’t up to anyone but the person who is suffering. We as damaged people must have the desire to seek a way out of our particular suffering. All the support and awareness in the world won’t save a person who is unwilling or unable to change. And, sad as it is to say, someone who is truly fixated on taking their end into their own hands will not be stopped. Those of us close to him saw the warning signs and interrupted several attempts, but in the end my “brother” Branden found the end he wanted.

Fuck, what a downer of a post, huh?! Maybe I should include a picture of something adorable, like a drunk monkey…

🍸🙊🍺🐒🍻

There ya go… 😉

For anyone who needs it, the website for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is https://www.afsp.org

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

i am the chasm

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i named her heart
after a black hole sun
but the truth is
the void is in me
as dense and suffocating
as the ache in
my fucking guts.
i am the chasm
which consumes all things
with a hunger
ravenous
never replete.

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

an apology of sorts

Image by Righteous Indignation

Image by Righteous Indignation

i suppose i
shouldn’t be upset
you’re right,
after all
in a way.
i don’t care for you.
i don’t have the energy to.
my compassion and
empathy have been
so abused and
disregarded, even
by my own choices,
that i can no longer
muster the energy
to care. Even for you.

Violin+Birds by Judy Johnson-Williams

Violin+Birds by Judy Johnson-Williams

© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Just writing…

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© Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ryan Scott Sanders and Dharma and Belligerence: Mad Rants from a Free-Range Buddhist Hooligan with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

“The demons got my beautiful, loving daughter…” via The Washington Post

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Doris Fuller with daughter Natalie, 2004

Read “My daughter, who lost her battle with mental illness, is still the bravest person I know” by Doris A. Fuller on The Washington Post.

In case some of y’all don’t know, this “crazy emo brain cloud bullshit” kills motherfuckers.  This kind of story always hits home, because it makes me realize the potential consequences of my own suicidal ideation, and it makes things like the death of my brudder Branden come up fresh and new again. (A tale for another time…)

To paraphrase a friend, after every manic episode, every bout of deep depression, every nervous breakdown, every psychotic break, it becomes harder and harder to bounce back, to find your center again, to remember who you are. Some don’t make it back.

For those who may need them, below are a few links to resources for help in moments of crisis.  Please, if you need to, use them.  If you don’t, guaranteed someone you know does, so feel free to pass them along.  And keep your head up!  There’s plenty more ridiculous shit to experience. 😀

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (US)
1-800-273-8255

National Crisis Services (US)

List of Suicide and Crisis Hotlines

Crisis and Suicide Hotlines (Canada)

International Suicide Prevention Lifelines

International Crisis and Suicide Hotlines

The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling.”  — David Foster Wallace

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Image by Neo-Surrealism Art

Silent Struggles, Individually Universal

“Every man has his secret sorrows which the world knows not; and often times we call a man cold when he is only sad.”

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I can easily get too caught up in the poorly written melodrama inside my own mind and forget that everyone has an oftentimes silent struggle with which they are dealing. Here’s a rare moment of mostly selfless empathy and encouragement to all of you who feel overwhelmed by or consumed with something vexing. You are a fucking rock star, and you’ve got this bitch! 😀