It’s wearisome, the euphemizing prevalent in the behavioral health lexicon. The “act of suicide” is very personal and unique. Yet, blanket statements such as “committing suicide” prevail, as if the reasons for suicide share a singular causal locus. It’s a disingenuous side-step engineered for the benefit of softening the reality. From personal experience . . .
Too harsh? Too bad.
There are peers who reflect upon such life events along their recovery journey as a momentary lapse in judgment. There are parents mourning the loss of a beloved child needing to make sense their personal horror. This is not a time for comfort. Neither stance addresses the true nature of suicide.
I’ve tried to kill myself three times. Fortunately, I’m bad at killing myself. I’m still breathing, I’m breathing on my own, my head’s above the rain and roses. If I use the cliché “commit suicide,” I’m robbing myself of an important life lesson. I need to be harsh, I need to be unkind, and I need to be direct. My reasons are my own and thusly I’m 100% responsible.
Perhaps “commit suicide” once held emotional impact. To me, it’s no more than a cop-out, a lingual excuse, and a shirking of personal responsibility. I’m neither proud nor shamed by trying to kill myself, neither weak nor strong by trying to kill myself. In my current lucidity, this is the time to learn that important lesson and to formulate my own rationale for living.
Have I mentioned how competitive I am? I love to win. Really and truly. I might hide it well, this competitive nature of mine. And my biggest competitor is myself. I “tried to commit suicide” holds no sway, the action verb “commit” is so soft and formless, and “suicide” has no punch.
I tried to kill myself. Three times. If I kill myself, I’m losing to myself. In the most challenging of times this is what keeps me going. That, and the idea I’ll never have Round Table Pizza again. And I miss out on the chance to kiss a girl for the first time.