So you want to kill yourself? Is that why you're here? OK, well, I'm sorry you feel that way, I know it can all feel horribly, tremendously wrong. I've been there. I've stared at sharp objects behind fences and wondered what would happen if I were to jump on them and end it all. For about an hour or so at a time. Fun stuff!

Was I the only one who felt this way? The only one who would have such feelings? What can I say, I was a teenager and I thought I was unique. What I was was stuck in a depression that was eating me alive even as I found it to be so comfy in its absoluteness. Fortunately it was a phase that I was able to put behind myself with a conscious effort.

My friend Paul wasn't so lucky. He fought his depression several times over for a couple decades. After a long battle he chose to fight alone, he took his own life. He wasn't the easiest guy to know, but at his best he could make me laugh and think about all sorts of new ideas for hours on end. I still miss Paul even though it's been over 10 years since we last hung out. This Instructable is for him.

Important Note: If you or a friend are considering suicide please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). It is free and confidential and they know a LOT more about this stuff than I do.

This is published in support of World Suicide Prevention Day.

Passo 1: Don't Talk to Anyone

Certainly the thing that Paul was really good at was shutting people out when times got rough. It was an uncanny ability if you could try to classify it as some sort of a skill.

"So how are you feeling tonight?"
"..."
"Paul?"
"...yeah?"
"You been taking anything?"
"..."
"Goddammit, I'm coming over. Can you get up to to open the door when I get there?"
"I..."
"Good"

These were the bad times. The times when Paul would just shut down. Sometimes there was a slight gap you could try to coax into a minor opening, but other times it would clamp shut right in front of you. I'd swing by his apartment and he'd let me in, or maybe a roommate did, and then I'd talk next to him for an hour or so. The responses were grunts or the occasional word. One time after a session of looking through his DVDs and pretending to talk about movies he said, "I'm not going to get up for a while."
"A while? An hour or so?"
"Long enough"

And I'd try telling jokes or talking about things I liked or even bouncing popcorn off his forehead one time, but nothing worked. When Paul got better he would refuse to talk about his mute sessions. He said he could handle it. He said he his own way. I let it go even though I doubted his way was working all that well. He was surrounded by piles of stuff everywhere I could see.
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    Ago 13, 2014

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