'Love is the answer'

The idea of belonging has always had significance in my life. My deepest desire is to see everyone around me as family, and I think that everyone deserves a sense of belonging and love.

My focus on belonging deepened in college when I learned my younger sister had committed suicide. Her passing was startling, but I had been aware of her pain and also struggled with the idea of killing myself. Suicide suggested itself as a way to end the misery I was living and to lift the burden I felt I was to others. I was often taunted and teased in elementary school, even by adults, so I learned to minimize the pain I suffered by reading people and figuring out what they wanted from me. I reasoned that if I was able to give people what they wanted (within limits), they would like me and treat me better. Sometimes other students would copy my tests or otherwise use me, but I didn’t care. Any positive attention, even fake, was accepted.

Church was my refuge. I looked forward to attending Sunday School and seeing all the wonderful, loving people there. What I learned in Sunday School likely saved my life. At one point, in late elementary or early middle school, I became serious about ending it all and even started to plan how I might do it. One Sunday, my teacher, not knowing what I was planning, brought up the verse in the Bible that says, “In the place where the tree falleth, there it shall be” (Ecclesiastes 11:3). He explained that it had to do with death: that after we pass out of this plane of existence, we still have the same challenges and opportunities that we had before. Mary Baker Eddy expands on this reasoning, writing: “Every mortal at some period, here or hereafter, must grapple with and overcome the mortal belief in a power opposed to God” (Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 569). This strong realization hit me and made me see that suicide was not a way out. This did not immediately end the temptations, but for years it always prevented me from following through.

Breaking the spell of suicide
October 8, 2012

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