The Final Exit
Many years ago while I was browsing through the second hand books kept for sale on the streets near Nepal Airlines Corporation near New Road, my eyes stumbled upon the book titled ‘The Final Exit’ by Derek Humphrey. The title of the book seemed interesting so, I picked out the book and started skimming through the pages randomly. After few minutes, I put back the book in its place feeling a chill in my heart. Oh my god, what a scary book I had picked up! I began wondering why on earth somebody would like to write a book like that. It was a self-help book for committing suicide. It covered many techniques like hanging, poisoning, shooting, and so on. It advocated for euthanasia later I learned. The author had assisted his own wife to die with medication.
Nepal’s Department of Health Services last week released shocking findings in its report, “Maternal Mortality and Morbidity Study 2008/2009” which stated that Nepalese women are committing suicide at an alarming rate. Suicide is now the leading cause of death among women of reproductive age (15-49), accounting for almost 16 percent of deaths in that age group. In the past 10 years there has been a significant change in the health and wellbeing of Nepalese women. Suicide has overtaken maternal mortality as the leading cause of death for young women. According to a similar study in 1998, suicide then ranked as the third single cause of death.
Very often the cause behind suicide is psychological problems such as depression and relationship problems. Financial problems also add the overwhelming tension and stress. However, the people around in Nepalese society think the person committing suicide alone is responsible for that outcome. They easily neglect the factors that led to it.
The cases of suicide often go unrecognized and unreported in our society due to the embarrassment it causes to the family. The topic of death and suicide is often avoided due to the negative feelings it arouses. However, it is an important topic of discussion for preventing the probable suicide by understanding about it.
Research has shown that women are twice more likely to attempt suicide but more men kill themselves in the suicidal action. Depression is one of the major reasons behind people committing the suicide. Other than that, when people are faced with existential crisis like the meaning of life, the emptiness in their life…the big unanswered questions also might lead to suicide in which cases the people committing suicide think it is better to die than to live. Suicide has also been glamorized and made appealing due to famous people and celebrities doing the same. The famous Nepali satirist, writer Bhairab Aryal committed suicide. Who could have imagined the writer who had such wit and humor would end up his life that. Kurt Cobain, the vocalist of Nirvana shot himself dead. It was not the failure in his musical career but the personal reasons and relationship problems in his family. He was a celebrity already and he had all the success and fame he could have wished in his life. Similarly, a Nepalese singer Cool Pokharel died of drug overdose few years before when his fans were just beginning to appreciate his musical talent.
Every day somebody somewhere in this world is committing suicide but there is a way to stop it if we are aware about MYTHS AND FACTS ABOUT SUICIDE. A person who is vulnerable to committing suicide shows various warning signals before attempting the suicide such as loss of interest in everyday life, impaired daily functioning, giving away of valuable possessions, expressing feelings and intents of suicidal tendency, seeking help to solve problems and so on. If these warning signs are heeded on time then, many cases of suicide are likely to be avoided.
There are services of suicide hotlines in many Western countries that provide counseling to people contemplating suicide by trying to stop it. The chances of stopping suicide have been found to be very high through such service. Similarly, there are counselors who provide help to people to deal with psychological and psychosocial problems. In Nepal, these services are hardly accessible to vulnerable people which make it harder to reduce the cases of suicide.
Read More: SuicideMythsnFacts2010