I’ve recently read a few things on social media regarding young people committing suicide over the social isolation during this Covid crisis. It breaks the heart. We put so much emphasis as a society on being part of a group, a social butterfly, extroverted, a clique. And I understand how important it is to not be isolated, shut off, and labeled an outcast as a young person. My Junior High days are still clearly etched in my brain, unfortunately. Sports teams, parties, sleep overs, and school clubs are an integral part of growing up. When that is ripped away from a person, especially one already dealing with some form of depression, it can have devastating consequences, as I’ve mentioned earlier.
As a mother, I can’t even begin to imagine the immense grief and suffering these parents are going through, losing a child to suicide. They will be left wondering what they could have done differently, questioning themselves why they didn’t see the warning signs. The sad part, the tragic part, is that it is happening more and more because of Covid. Yes, I understand we need to isolate, to protect ourselves and others, but when will it end? How many more lives will be lost not only to the pandemic by catching the disease, but by those who are feeling trapped, imprisoned, and drowning in hopelessness?
On the other hand, though, I’m an introvert, an aspie, one who does not require a lot of social interaction, and if I’m honest I can spend days in my house and not miss being around other people. But most people are not me. Most people need other people around them. And that is a good thing. As human beings, that is how we were made, to have social interaction. I’m imagining that’s how we survived all these thousands of years, relying on each other for protection, for hunting and gathering, for helping raise children.
But I understand depression and the lows that it brings. I used to suffer with it as well, and attempted suicide a few times. So I understand. I understand how our minds can play tricks on us, making us begin to think we aren’t necessary, that the world would be better off without us, or at least that’s how how I used to think when depression would sink it’s jagged teeth into me, and did it’s best to hold on. Life can be frightening. We need that lifeline that others provide for us, something to hang on to when the sky seems to be falling down around us. The Bible has a verse on this that I like: If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. That’s from Ecclesiastes 4:10 NLT. When we have no one to reach out and help us out of our pit of despair, where do we turn to? As a Christian, I pray for strength and guidance. I realize that the devil is real and is a master manipulator. You may not believe in God or Satan, but as for me, I believe that they are real. There’s real terror in finding yourself at the end of yourself. You believe that no one cares, or that this will never get better, and you lose all hope. Tragic and heartbreaking.
But there is hope, and there is help. And again my hope came from God and my friends. You can find an online group, or even find a church where you are comfortable and talk to someone. You can find help. Don’t lose heart, my friends. Don’t be a statistic. You are more than that. Keep a journal and write down your feelings. It’s okay to be angry. I am going to pray for those parents and families who lost someone to suicide. Isolation is hard, especially when you are young and being around friends and playing sports is all you’ve known.
I hope this pandemic, this monster, will be gone soon and people can go out and live their lives again, without fear, without masks, and with an eye to the future. If you are depressed, please get the help you need. I did. And remember there is a light at the end of this tunnel; daylight will soon break through.