It is difficult to understand what goes on inside a person’s head. It is even more difficult to understand the path that has lead a person to believe suicide is the only option.
Having been in some incredibly dark places myself, I understand how a person may have felt that suicide was the only option. I struggle with thoughts of suicide myself. The difference is that I have HOPE and I hold on to that tiny grain.
Robin Williams lost that hope. He had nothing to hold on to.
Now, since my family is reading this, let me reassure you that I have no desire to end my own life. I’m smart enough to know when I need help during my times of despair. I have people I feel safe enough to turn to when things aren’t what they seem. That being said, I will always cling to HOPE. I have enough to live for in my life; I don’t ever want my brother to have to explain to my niece why Aunt Chelle isn’t in her life. I still believe that I will have a child one day. While I think suicide is selfish, I can completely understand why a person would do it.
There are demons in a person’s mind that can be extremely difficult to overcome. Add drugs and/or alcohol in that mix and the mind is not one’s own. Robin Williams battled demons that an average, mentally sound person will not experience personally. He had been fighting depression for a long time. He used laughter and comedy to hide his true emotions. He worked very hard at making the world laugh while hiding his personal, private pain.
Robin Williams was surrounded by love. His wife of 3 years loved him; his children loved him. The whole world loved him and his work. Unfortunately, the darkness of his world was so heavy, that he could not feel love from anyone. If he could, he would have been able to hold on to HOPE. He felt that there was no other way to conquer the demons that plagued him.
Suicide is not something to be ashamed of. It is something that requires compassion and a deep understanding of where a person is emotionally when battling mental illness. There is help out there for those fighting depression. I would never want anyone to go through a deep depression alone. Please don’t be afraid to reach out for help. Learn the signs of depression and mental illness and be aware that they can be different for every person.
Most importantly, have COMPASSION for the person struggling. Be there when they need you. Don’t try to offer a solution for something you don’t understand. Listen to the words they speak when talking. Know that you cannot always help and they made need something more than you can offer (i.e., counseling, professional therapy, in-patient mental healthy facility, etc.). Help the person as best as you can, within your scope of experience and knowledge.
Let them know you do love them. Show them, because during the darkest times, words of love may mean very little.
My heart and prayers go out to the Williams family during this tragic time. May God bring them the peace and comfort they need in dealing with the loss of the world’s beloved comedian, Robin McLaurin Williams. My deepest condolences…Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.