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The Language of Suicide

            Suicide has been a controversial topic for many years. The controversy usually comes when we ask, "Why?" Why would someone commit suicide? Their true intent may not be suicide, but something more. In a study performed by Matthew Nock and Ronald Kessler, it was found that, "Although 4.6% of respondents indicated they made a 'suicide attempt,' only 2.7% reported doing so with intent to die, whereas 1.9% denied any such intent and reported doing so to communicate with others." This number is startling. This brings up an important point. If a person is committing this act without wanting to die, they must have another goal. In an essay, "I'm Jumping Off the Bridge," Kevin Sampsell reflects the idea that there is another purpose to suicide in a very specific way by making us reconsider how we feel about taking one's own life. This research in combination with "I'm Jumping off the Bridge," is asking us or demanding that we review our thoughts on suicide and how we think of people who are suicidal. These people do not really want to die, but they want to find some kind of reason to live and suicide is used as a language so that they can reach out to us. On some level suicide is not an act of wanting to die, but wanting to live. .
             In Kevin Sampsell's essay, Chris, a customer at Kevin's work, walked into the bookstore, met Kevin, and immediately told him that he was planning on jumping off the local bridge. Chris was seeking help and wanted someone to rescue him from his state of depression. Not only did Kevin save Chris's life, but Chris also helped Kevin to better understand life and what his purpose on earth is. According to Psych Central, "70% of people who commit suicide tell someone about their plans, or give some other type of warning signs." Chris needed help, and confided in a stranger. He felt hopeless and needed someone to listen to him.

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