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TheBabyEater Offline
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My friend is convinced if his friend kills herself, it will be his fault... - July 4th 2009, 06:19 PM

My friend has this other friend (who I don't know, or live by or anything) who is known to become really suicidal, even try every now and then. I keep trying to raise his hopes, saying that someone could stop her or catch her trying, or she could fail since the success rate is only about 6%, or that she could back out, but he seems convinced that she will succeed, if not now, then eventually. Probably soon.

He's also convinced that if she dies or tries, it's his fault. I've tried everything I can to convince him otherwise. That a person can only do so much, that as long as they try to stop the person, that is all that can be expected from them. That they are not 'God' and cant magically stop the person. Yes, they can try as hard as they can, but that's all they can do. If the person doesn't try at all to live for them, AND themself... Then there's only so much you can do...
He says that if the person dies, then the person helping isn't a good enough reason for them to live.

Which might be true but... I need to convince him otherwise. But I don't know what to say anymore. If this girl succeeds, he will blame himself to the point of suicide himself and I need him. (he is my boyfriend as well)

I want to slap this girl sensless sometimes. Force her to open her eyes...

Take me seriously.
I dare you.

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Re: My friend is convinced if his friend kills herself, it will be his fault... - July 4th 2009, 09:40 PM

Hi Table!!

I hope you're having a nice day!!

In the same way that your friend is NOT responsible for what his other friend ultimately decides to do with HER life - YOU are not responsible for making YOUR friend NOT feel responsible!! [I hope that made sense!!] That said - it's hard NOT to feel as though it IS 'up to us' to change how some other person thinks and feels. Especially when we care about them and can see how their thoughts and feelings are causing them so much pain. But to quote a very clever person that I know, "...a person can only do so much!" And that applies as much to YOU as it does to your friend.

It's an awful thing to hold over someone's head the threat of suicide. And a lot of people do just that. Many people [Not ALL - of course] USE the threat of suicide as a way to control and manipulate others. And although never actually said out loud - the message is painfully clear. "Do what I want - OR ELSE!!" And most people who are suicidal also want to MAKE someone ELSE feel responsible for how THEY feel and ultimately for what THEY end up deciding to DO. And isn't that horrible? No one has any right to do that to another person. But if someone is caring and sensitive it's easy to buy into all of that. So I sympathize with your friend.

Speaking of which... YOU are already doing as much as you can do. And your friend is lucky to have you in his life. It's now up to HIM to decide whether or not he's going to continue to ASSUME that what some other person decides to do with THEIR life is HIS responsibility. He is going to have learn one of life's most painful lessons and that is that there are limits to what we can do. And that no matter how much we care about someone - the most we can ever do is offer them a helping hand. But if that hand is refused - we must accept that. For we all have a right to accept or to refuse help. We can't FORCE someone to do what WE want them to do. And that include staying alive.

Still.... it might not hurt to ask your friend [If you haven't done so already] if HE thinks that YOU are responsible for how HE feels. If he says 'no' - then ask him what HE thinks YOU can do to feel less responsible. Whenever I'm trying to get someone to 'see' what THEY are doing - I often try to 'turn the tables' on them. The answer you're looking for when it comes to helping HIM 'see the light' just might come FROM him. By helping YOU - he just might end up giving YOU the tools you need to help HIM. Just a thought. But don't get all wrapped up in this. Always be mindful of the fact that he has a right to think, feel and DO whatever HE wants. It is - after all - his life.

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Re: My friend is convinced if his friend kills herself, it will be his fault... - July 4th 2009, 11:13 PM

Hey Table,

Your friend does have to realize that it is not his responsibility to make sure that his friend is alive. It is a lot for one person have that mentality because it puts a lot of pressure on that person, and can be very damaging to his well being.

Are there any other people that this girl is talking to besides your boyfriend? I think that having many people to support her would help open her eyes. Having a balance will help the girl see that many people care about her and give her many different perspectives and reasons for her to stay alive. It would take the pressure off of your boyfriend and help him to make clearer decisions.

I think you should mention to your boyfriend about this balance of people in her life. I think it would help him better understand that it isn't his responsibility.

Also, if she hasn't already. I think it would be a good idea for her to see a psychologist or therapist. These professionals have a better idea of understanding of suicide. They can be great to talk to as well as help build a plan to get in a better mood.

I hope things will get better with her and your boyfriend as well.
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