Of matters of life and death

“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

I truly second what Wallace says here. Unless you are in their shoes you would never know how they feel and what caused them to go over the edge and just give up living. Who gets to decide when its enough?And how?

It’s not easy trying to kill yourself (not that I have ever tried it myself), not easy thinking about it or living with it. And when you do finally arrive at a conclusion, whether to live or let it go, then also the issue is not resolved. Far from it. It’s really odd, you don’t want to live but you don’t want to take your own life also. Where exactly does that leave you? Nowhere? Hanging in the middle? Or miraculous sweet resolution? Believe it or not, NOBODY has all the answers and nobody can do it for you. You have to figure it out for yourself.