Sunday, September 19, 2004

WHY WOULD ANYBODY COMMIT SUICIDE?

The sad news reached me yesterday that a young man of about 25 years decided to out his light in a very horrible way. His choice of exit from this world was to jump infront of a moving train. LAWD! I hope it was pain-free, an instant death.

The question remains though; what would cause someone to commit suicide? Does it take a special strength to take that fatal and irreversible step? Or is it just pure mental deterioration, a psychological meltdown that is required? I mean everybody has thought about suicide at least once in their lives but how many come remotely close to putting it into action?

Research shows however that those who do pull it off eventually, have had at least one unsuccessful practice run. Since this young man did the deed and one has to ask, how he got there? I figure whatever ailed him was as debilitating as any excrutiatingly painful disease. He must have wanted desparately to get away from the pain.

From what I know of this young man, he was brilliant and a homosexual. It also appears that most of his problems were derived from the latter. However to put his troubles with his sexuality in context, it must be known that he spent most of his teenage years in Jamaica.

Being a gay teenager in the Yard caused him lots of heartache and pain. Tough teenage years for any gay kid there, since Jamaicans are renowned for being homophobes. Due to this, his parents on the first opportunity, sent him off to university in North America. They had hoped that a more tolerant society would do the trick. They thought that they had finally given their child an opportuntiy to be his whole self and most of all a chance at happiness. Unfortunately though, it appears the psychological scarring of being a gay teenage boy, in the Yard, was already too deep and permanent for a cosmetic change of environment to really help.

One has to also consider that the new environemt here. I know from first-hand experience if as a young West Indian student one's mental health is not at least average, then a solo move to North America may very well cook your goose. Parents of young West Indians students, often have no clue about what they are sending their usually overprotected children to. They don't know that in North America it is cold not only in terms of the weather and but in terms of social interaction. The cold months are an average nine months of the year and that coupled with the fact that nobody gives a shit whether you are alright, is enough to push a mentally fragile person over the edge.

So this young man still tormented and alone, and searching for a place, called his parents to tell them buh-bye. Worried about what he might do and being all the way in Jamaica they called around frantically asking those who knew him to check on him. No one could find him or knew where he was for hours. The next time they heard news, they were told that he had killed himself by hauling his body into the path of a moving train; Sad beyond words.

Yet as it is with most suicides, this one leaves heartbroken family and friends, racked with guilt and burdened with unanswered questions. I just hope more than anything else though, that this young man has finally found peace.

5 comments:

Abeni said...

Most times people who commit suicide or contemplate it just feel they cannot go on anymore.Usually you are going through some personal torment which you would have tried to deal with. Then one day it seems so futile and death never looked better.So you decide to end it all.Courage or cowardice will always be the debate but the main thing is never to judge a person until you have walked in their shoes.

I can so relate to the NA environment.It was such an experience for me to move from a life where I was being taken care of to one where suddenly I was expected to look after me.For the first time in my life I knew what loneliness was and the impersonality of the place just wore me down.The society can really mess up a young mind who lacks the support of family. I just could not wait to get out and come back to my comfort zone.

ThandieLand said...

I recommend the book "Halfway Heaven: Diary of a Harvard Murder" by Melanie Thernstrom for all those parents busy to post their children/teenagers off to strange lands.

Anonymous said...

this sad story has a resonance with me. i see "normal" people, the herd sniffing the blood of those who are different. i abhor it. i hold no brief for homosexuals, but i do believe that they are human beings too. and what gets me the most, the jamaican who goes to church on sunday morning and on sunday evening concerts with the mob to beat and kill the "batty bwoy."

hypocracy personified and hypocracy in more than one way. rex nettleford is jamaica's most renowned queer, yet the people accept rexy because he is an intellectual, because he has contributed to the cultural life of the island and because he is who he is.

i am glad the rest of the world is starting to let jamaica know that it is unacceptable. and i hope that in time the whole world learns to be tolerant of those amongst us who are different. in jamaica's case i think it may be something to do with the particular version of so called christianity which they practice. where a bishop of high standing can come out and openly say that women wearing skimpy clothes put themselves in harms way because the skimpy clothes encourages rape.

in my view this is nothing more than backward bullshit perpetrated by an idiot with a title and which unfortunately "normal" people believe and accept.

homosexuals - be unno selves. women wear whatever unno want to. who doan like it mek dem go to hell.

i really like this blog a lot. methinks it is written with the pen of a dot islander woman. keep going nice lady, provoke them, cause them to think....blog away!

Anonymous said...

this sad story has a resonance with me. i see "normal" people, the herd sniffing the blood of those who are different. i abhor it. i hold no brief for homosexuals, but i do believe that they are human beings too. and what gets me the most, the jamaican who goes to church on sunday morning and on sunday evening concerts with the mob to beat and kill the "batty bwoy."

hypocracy personified and hypocracy in more than one way. rex nettleford is jamaica's most renowned queer, yet the people accept rexy because he is an intellectual, because he has contributed to the cultural life of the island and because he is who he is.

i am glad the rest of the world is starting to let jamaica know that it is unacceptable. and i hope that in time the whole world learns to be tolerant of those amongst us who are different. in jamaica's case i think it may be something to do with the particular version of so called christianity which they practice. where a bishop of high standing can come out and openly say that women wearing skimpy clothes put themselves in harms way because the skimpy clothes encourages rape.

in my view this is nothing more than backward bullshit perpetrated by an idiot with a title and which unfortunately "normal" people believe and accept.

homosexuals - be unno selves. women wear whatever unno want to. who doan like it mek dem go to hell.

i really like this blog a lot. methinks it is written with the pen of a dot islander woman. keep going nice lady, provoke them, cause them to think....blog away!

Yamfoot said...

funny I should read this here tonight, for we were just talking about it at home tonight. Didnt know all those details though.

Sad that people can't be accepted for who they are, which could be a result of genetic make up rather than a full blown choice.