Hi. I have never had any suicidal feelings myself, i have come to the forum because my friend mentioned it and i am a little concerned that he may be at risk of suicide. Having read the forum pretty extensively today i wanted to say that i feel a lot of sympathy for all of you who are suffering, it sounds like a truely horrible experience for you all. It is a wonderful community here, everyone is very friendly and supportive of each other. I hope though that anyone who is depressed or considering suicide does not rely solely on the forum for support. The reason i say this is because i get a feeling that everyone here has a lot of depression and loss, I worry that it could be a little bit self feeding. A depressing forum is not such a good place to come if you are feeling depressed. I feel very sad and shocked that someone would consider suicide as an option, yet on the forum everyone expresses almost a resignation to the idea. I guess it is because they themselves have considered it. Dont feel afraid to talk to another person outside of the forum. I know it is hard to find someone who is a competent listener, maybe a friend or superior at work. Anyone who is emotionally mature themselves would make a good candidate. Defiantely dont talk to someone who is not strong enough in themselves, some people are weak and confused followers and shouldnt be relied on for advice or emotional support. You would be suprised at the support you will get from others. They often wont volunteer it until you make the approach though. People cant help feel they are being disrespectful if they ask someone if they were feeling suicidal. It is up to you to make that first approach and ask to talk to them. That is all you have to do, just ask to talk to them, tell them you need someone to talk to, tell them you are having a hard time lately and tell them your troubles. Everyone suffers many of the same problems, you are not alone in this. I personally think that western culture has a lot to answer for, it is often the reason that so many people suffer mentally. Our society is so full of empty nonsense and we are too individualistic. Everyone is trying desperately to seek acceptance from others, and we actually need this acceptance to feel emotionally happy. It is a very hungry beast to feed when you live in our consumerist society. We are flooded with advertising of the labels, fashion, image etc that you apparently 'must have' to be accepted. Even if you yourself dont pay heed to the advertising, many others do. I think people need to get a sense of well being, importance and satisfaction from a range of sources. There are many of them out there but dont only rely on only one. For instance many people rely only on their partner for thier emotional happiness, this is doomed to disaster the moment that you break up. It will cause you a lot of anguish. I dont believe in soul mates and it troubles me that a lot of people on the forum seem to. Love is a very strong emotion, it is one that we can get addicted to and it is easy to ascribe all sorts of higher reasons to it. It is only an emotion though, it makes you feel good and when it is no longer there your body still craves it and thinks that it cant do without it. You can. There are so many good emotions out there that will counter some of the bad emotions like loss, anxiety, low self esteem etc.Whatever you do dont try to replace the bad emotions with the sort of temporary good emotions that can come from drugs, alcohol or gambling. These only give you a very breif respite from the bad emotions and they will come back with a vengence when the high wears off. Good emotions can come from simple sources like being in the beautiful nature. Just go to the local botanical gardens or go to the zoo and see the wonderful animals there. Better yet go to a national park and be surrounded by the wildnerness (go with someone else though, otherwise you could feel lonely). Cities are insane places and humans are not meant to live in these sort of surroundings. I know people in the country also have a lot of depression problems and think perhaps this is often from loneliness. People need the company of others to be emotionally happy. Everyone knows that you also get a great emotional surge from simply doing excercise once a day. I personally go to the gym each day just because it makes me feel great. Doing creative work like music painting or other art also gives a great positive emotional boost. It is short term though and wears off when you are not doing it. I have a theory that this is why so many emotionally disturbed people are such great artists, it gives them a relief from their anguish while they do it. You need friends to feel good too, good friends who make you feel good to be around. Always keep learning things, learning about something you enjoy is a great way to make you feel good. Acheiving things also gives you a great emotional satisfaction that can NEVER be taken away. There are millions of things that you can do, study something, travel somewhere, build something, go skydiving, learn to juggle, learn an instrument, anything that is a bit of a challenge that you overcome. Another thing that everyone on this forum should do is to help other people. It makes you feel so good to help other people. There are so many people who need it too. Not just in your own country but all over the world. There is such misery in third world countries. I was in Madagascar a few months ago, that is a forgotten country, the people came from indonesia 2000 years ago and they have a strong social hirachy where the nobles at the top dont give a shit about the rest. There is so much suffering there but the people are so accepting of it. So many yound kids are all twisted up with polio. Go to India, see how much suffering there is there, i think it is even much much worse than in madagascar. But they are happy in other ways, they have such a social society. They have such a strong spirituality. Before any of you commit suicide i urge you to go to India, it will change your whole concept of life and your own place in it. It will make you understand the empty materialistic nonsense that pervades western society. Dont worry about money either, you can live very well on only $20 US a day. They also have lots of Ashrams there to help people spiritually, you have to pay $2US a day to pay for your food and accommodation. Stay with Mata Amritanandamayi (known to her devotees as Amma), she is an indian women who travels the world hugging people. SHe often hugs 5000 people in one day. I have met some people who have been hugged by her and they said it was a life changing experience. Go to India, there is nothing stopping you but your own self indulgent melancholy (sorry to be harsh, i know it is cruel but i am trying to motivate you to change your life and start enjoying it and seeing the wonderous and fantastic place the world is once you get away from our empty western culture) You also have to understand that your thoughts are not you. You do not have active control over your thoughts, your thoughts are just thrown at you from your brain. It is like you are sitting in the command center and your brain just throws suggestions at you. That is all they are, suggestions, you dont have to act on them. It is like if you have a problem then your brain will just try to come up with ideas. it will just throw thoughts at you, it doesnt consider these thoughts itself. If you have a problem then perhaps your brain comes up with suicide, it is only a thought, it is not you. The moment you acknowledge it and recognise it as just another thought, a suggestion, then it will just vanish. i am not trained to give support or counselling so i hope that i dont cause more damage when i am trying to help. i just hope i can give some more help than just the platitudes and reassurances that everyone else gives. It is a good thing to give people a place to tell how they feel and to empathise with them. They need this, everyone needs it! But you have to give each other more of a sense of the wonderful place the world is. It is not solely a place of suffering. There is a lot of suffering, yes, but there are also great things to see, wonderful amazing places to go, incredible things to learn and do. Life is short enough as it is without deliberately ending it prematurely. Another thing i would urge you all to do is to become vegetarian, we are not alone in the world with our cities and our cars and plasma tvs. There are other animals here too, many of which share very similar emotions and conciousness as us (albiet with somewhat less problem solving ability). I think people would be much happier if we realised that life is not limited to human interactions. There is a whole lot more going on in life than just humans.