Do you find it hard to be helpful on SF?

Discussion in 'I Have a Question...' started by Mortal Moon, Dec 28, 2009.

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  1. Mortal Moon

    Mortal Moon Well-Known Member

    It's happened a number of times that I've looked at a thread in SF in which someone expresses their horrible pain and their desire to end it all, and I've clicked the "reply" button hoping to offer them some comfort and encouragement (to NOT die, that is), only to find that I have no such words.

    Because most of the time, I'm in the same spot as that person. I'm constantly afraid, confused, and desperate, and I definitely see suicide as a way out- sometimes even as a downright positive thing. So how can I possibly try to talk someone else out of it, tell them they have so much to live for, and so on? It would be hollow at best, hypocritical at worst.

    So I wonder if there aren't two "tiers" of SF members- those who comfort and counsel the suicidal, and those who are too suicidal themselves to do so. Presumably, almost everyone here was in the second camp at one time or another, and then some of us "graduated" to the first. More likely, it changes for each of us from day to day.

    Do you ever feel like you're too suicidal to contribute meaningfully to a suicide prevention forum? And if so, do you feel any guilt or shame about it? I certainly worry that I've somehow subverted the spirit of SF by being such a downer, or perhaps even unintentionally encouraging the act through my attitude or inaction.
  2. cownes

    cownes Well-Known Member

    i have like that at times, or some peoples stories u feel so much pain for them, that u jsut can not think of the 'correct' words to say, sometimes i jsut read threads and dont reply depending on the mood im in, or if im at camp a or b as we are calling them :) i do at times feel guilty for not being able to help people, especially if a few days before that person was helping me, but hopefuly the while of SF will never all be feeling down so there will always be someone there to help someone else :hug:
  3. boo

    boo Well-Known Member

    It always is. I find myself contradicting my own self when i try to help someone.
    So I just choose my words carefully. But no matter where we stand, it will always be a human thing to help someone in crisis.
  4. I always have trouble trying to find something to tell somebody in any situation. I even find it hard to express myself when I can relate to the posting matter. There is always an opinion or comment that pops into my head, I just cease to voice it. I am lurking quite often but I RARELY reply. I just find myself sounding silly or unintelligent, so I just delete everything I have written. Maybe it's because I feel like I would be no help? I can't quite decide on why this is.
  5. Datura

    Datura Well-Known Member

    It's hard for me, but in different ways than you. Offering suggestions to people who are in the same situation as me or similar are easier to 'guide' (for lack of a better word). Just because something didn't work for me, doesn't mean it won't for them. That being said - very few people are in the same boat. I cannot wrap my head around many of the threads here asking for help. And I can't go into specifics or it will likely be viewed as flaming.

    Being "helpful" sometimes means being blunt. That isn't all that welcome here, and that's another reason why I typically keep insight to a minimum.

    If I was that suicidal I'd be in bed.
    Sorry if that's not what you're asking.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 29, 2009
  6. itmahanh

    itmahanh Senior Member & Antiquities Friend

    Yes I feel very guilty sharing and saying the things I do. I am the definition of hypocrite. Almost every post I make the saying " do as I say not as I do" rings in my brain. But I also cant not help others. It is who I am. And I hope that all the shit I have had to deal with in my life wasnt a total waste of my time. It has given me experience. Life experience. Experience that I hope that by sharing with others will help atleast one other person pull ahead.

    It isnt the volume or the words that you use. It's the fact that you care enough to post and let someone else know you see them there.
  7. Disappear

    Disappear Well-Known Member

    Yes I suck at words. I wish I could make every one better but I can't, I mean I can't even help myself. Plus I like to SH myself and I support my own suicide, so it's just a complete contadiction anyway.
  8. KittyGirl

    KittyGirl Well-Known Member

    I'll start to panic if I can't do anything to help.
    Not only am I helpless to change my own life- but other people's lives as well.
    I feel like we're all in the same boat and any time someone disappears- the boat sinks a little bit more.
  9. bingo!
  10. Chargette

    Chargette Well-Known Member

    I figure that if I don't have the words at the moment then it probably means they need a :hug:
  11. TaraB3ar

    TaraB3ar Well-Known Member

    Sometimes knowing that someone else can understand how you feel IS helping.
  12. morning rush

    morning rush Well-Known Member

    often I want to reply but I feel that I dont know if what I say will be helpful...I mean they could be saying well what does she know? She's there saying that it will be okay when she has no idea of the pain I'm going through...I often hesitate to respond because I know too well that pain, that sadness, that darkness...and to be honest I'm not sure how to get out of how could I tell someone that it will all be okay when I dont even know that myself...
  13. Emptysoul

    Emptysoul Well-Known Member

    When im feeling really suicidal I do find it hard to contribute meaningfully. I know what things i should be saying to help the other person and im very good at giving advice out on various matters but when im really bad it i find it hard as it basically makes me a hypocrite if i post a reply.
    I can give out good solid and true advice but as with many thing i find it hard to follow my on advice.....
    Well that was a bit of a ramble thats what happnes when you have been up for 72 hours with no sleep lol
  14. Stranger1

    Stranger1 Forum Buddy & Antiquities Friend

    I try to help when I can, at times when I am down I avoud the suicide forum, crisis forum, and after affects forum.. I just stick to the others.. I don't know how many times I have clicked on reply but couldn't find the words of support..So I just log off..
  15. worlds edge

    worlds edge Well-Known Member

    Very thought provoking topic. Thank you for starting this thread, you've certainly given me something to think about anyways. And if nothing else, I would say that you're doing anything BUT subverting the spirit of SF. :smile:

    This I'm not so sure about. As in, I don't think my personal beliefs re: suicide presently put me in either of these "tiers." I won't bore everyone with a tedious War and Peace length post going into those personal beliefs in this thread -- though I may at some point (be afraid, be very afraid :tongue: ) -- just that I think there are other reasons that people may legitimately join and post on this site to which neither grouping applies.
  16. bubblin girl

    bubblin girl Well-Known Member

    yes, its hard. another problem i have is i reply and make it worse for the person,and thats why i start to think twice to try to help and thats make it harder and harder for me :(
    i think its a good suggestion like chargette says,at least give a hug when the words run out.
  17. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    No, I don't try to help. Nor do I seek help... I'm just here for a little bit of time killing and camaraderie.
  18. Mortal Moon

    Mortal Moon Well-Known Member

    Thank you for your replies, everyone.

    That's certainly true. Very few posters are going to fall cleanly in one or the other category; there's so much gray area, and so many other dimensions to it. And, of course, nothing is permanent- my personality and outlook have changed several times since I joined, and I bet most of us can say the same.

    So it's an oversimplification, to be sure. Still, I have definitely observed two broad categories of replies to threads like that: the people who dole out e-hugs and advice, and encourage the OP to PM them or join the chatroom; and the people who say things like "I feel the same way... :(", if they even respond at all. I won't name names, but you can probably think of a couple long-standing SFers for each type off the top of your head.

    I guess the reason I started this thread is that I usually feel more like the latter than the former, and it's discouraging that I can't do more to help people when their lives are in jeopardy.
  19. Tam

    Tam Well-Known Member

    Ok got to put my 2 cents worth in. I have to echo TaraB3ar's comment -

    I suspect that a lot of people who might fall into your second 'tier' category hang back from posting because they feel they don't have anything useful or helpful to say, or feel guilty for seemingly talking about themselves in someone else's thread - yet as TaraB3ar says, it does actually help to read about others in the same boat, and above everything else, just acknowledging someone's thread, acknowledging they are in pain is a big deal. Imagine if you posted and no-one at all replied, how bad would that make you feel?

    It's also swings and roundabouts - sometimes people feel ok enough to reach out in support, other times they are drowning in their own pain and can't do it. It's a phasal thing, I'm pretty sure most people find themselves in both 'tiers' at different times.

    In any case, the last thing you want is to feel pressured or guilty about 'having' to post supportive things - from what I've read of your posts you're doing a fair bit of supporting yourself, even if you don't think so :smile:
  20. Mortal Moon

    Mortal Moon Well-Known Member

    Thanks Tam, I'll try and keep that in mind. You're right: I'd much rather have someone commiserate than get no response at all.

    "Misery loves company" as they say, but I guess that's not always such a bad thing.
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