Suicide attempts or “attempted suicide “ according to the old parlance is an unsuccessful trial to kill oneself. I mentioned last year, when I discussed suicide, that a colleague of mine, a retired Permanent Secretary committed suicide. What I did not mention was that several others had attempted suicide also, and only lived to tell the story because they were unsuccessful.
Do you know that, as a retired Permanent Secretary cum medical doctor, instead of staying retired, I am forced into bulk consultation with my colleagues and numerous readers of my column to discuss how not to end ones life.
Do you also know that, one of my responders reprimanded me for not including in my suicide write up, “easy ways”, of committing suicide – whatever that means.
I had discussed severally the statistics of suicide in Nigeria, but there appears to be a rising epidemic of suicide, with more younger and educated people committing it, than any other time in our history. The economic crunch argument does not hold water since it affects 99% of the populace.
There is no class distinction in suicide attempts, the rich, the middle class and the poor are all culpable, but the most recurring decimal is economic downturn – usually from peer pressure, family pressure and attendant discomfort of not belonging to the Joneses.
Let me explain.
■ There are ten times more “attempted suicides “ than “suicides”. and most are not trying to kill themselves.
■ Suicide is typical of men and of the old.
• Attempted suicide is typical of women and of the young – and especially of young women.
■ Of every four(4) men who try suicide, three(3) kill themselves. Of every four(4) women only one succeed.
■ Of-course some genuinely wish to commit suicide and fail — just as others wish only to attempt suicide, and unhappily succeed.
■ But, in general, those who attempt suicide, and live, have different motives from those who kill themselves.
■ Suicide happens among those who are socially isolated, while attempted suicide happens among those who are socially, in fact emotionally involved.
■ Suicide is a way of ending your pain for yourself.
• Many who genuinely think of suicide are deterred by the thought of the pain and grief they would leave behind.
■ Attempted suicide is a way of trying to call on our emotional ties. It is an appeal for help, or a blackmail note for it.
■ Please, never ignore someone who talks of suicide. Talking of it does not mean he only wants to attempt it; talking of it, need not be a plea for sympathy.
■ Two-thirds of those who kill themselves, have told someone before hand what they intend to do, and those who have tried once are not safe from trying again and succeeding.
■ Please if someone secretly tells you of his intention to commit suicide, let this trigger the alarm bell in you. Notify those closest to him or his Church or Spiritual Pastors. A minute delay, may be a life lost.
What are the methods of suicide?
For ethical security and protective reasons, I shall not discuss in details, the methods of committing suicide, let’s people learn from them and proceed to put them into practice. Remember, people had already requested that I discuss “easy ways” of committing suicide, which I ignored.
There are broadly 8 ways of committing suicide.
1. Analgesics and Narcotics.
2. Non domestic gas.
3. Other Poisons.
4. Domestic gas.
5. Hanging and Strangulation.
6. Firearms, Explosives and Falling off from a height.
Last line – Wait a minute, before you commit or attempt suicide – pause, reflect and remember the agony and pain you will inflict on your loved ones. Please talk to someone or join the bandwagon and tweet or email me.
►Please follow me on twitter ; @ _ DRSUN.