I spend a lot of time on social media, and throughout the past week, I've noticed a very disturbing trend—people telling people to go kill themselves. I've seen it before, but it was every now and again, which still doesn't make it acceptable, but this week, it's been on several different social media sites repeatedly. What is wrong with people that makes them think saying something like this is okay? Why on earth would someone instruct another human being to kill themselves? It doesn't matter if you don't like a person's political leaning, their religion, sexual orientation, or skin color, it is NEVER okay to tell someone to end their own lives.
You don't know what that person is going through, if they're suffering from depression, if they just lost a loved one, a job, or their home. Telling them to kill themselves might be the catalyst to push them over their edge. If you're thinking no one should give anyone that much power over them, it's not a matter of power. In a moment of despair, a person can think the world might be better off without them or they just want the pain to end.
Unfortunately, I've been up close and personal with the aftereffects of suicide, and it is devastating to the family and friends left behind. You might not think your words should or will affect someone, but wouldn't it be better to just not say them?
Growing up, I don't remember a time ever hearing people telling one another to go kill themselves. Maybe it was because we didn't have the anonymity of the internet and computer screens to hide behind. What we said, we usually said to one another's face or over the phone, and we knew the chances of having to see that person again were fairly high. With the internet, someone can blast out a comment and leave the site without looking back, never knowing how their words might change another person's life.
Is it really so difficult to treat people with dignity and respect? Because I have to say, I don't go through my everyday life looking to hurt people. It's not hard for me to be nice to people because I don't know what kind of day they are having or how they might be hurting.
In the words of Thumper:
My thoughts, experiences, challenges, and goals. Right here. At least once a week or so. Oh, and opinions, too. Those will definitely come in. Join me!