I’ve avoided talking about the Robin Williams story simply because my feelings on the matter will likely clash with the vast majority’s but here goes…
I live my life by a simple philosophy – it’s easy to have an opinion on any given topic when you don’t stand to have that opinion challenged. I’ve read many people share their thoughts on how selfish and in particular, how cowardly it was for Robin Williams to take his own life. This angers me like you wouldn’t believe, especially since the vast majority of people will never have to go on that dark journey and can therefore formulate their so-called opinions while sitting comfortably in their ivory towers.
Personally, I think it takes a tremendous amount of courage to go against your mind and body’s natural inclination for self-preservation and end your life. I can make a claim like that because there have been many instances in my life; very recently for that matter, where I’ve stared longingly at a bottle of pills or at the blade of a knife in a state of utter despair, feeling all the more despondent at the fact that I had tried everything in my power to get myself out of a funk but no matter what I do, I find myself sinking deeper and deeper without any hope of ever rising above it all.
I really do believe that if someone has truly exhausted every option made available to them whether it be medically, psychologically, physically, etc. that that person has every right to choose to end their life and I commend them for having the courage to take an active stance rather than continue leading a life of misery and pain made all the more unbearable by the delusion that things will get better. Ironically taking this active stance or even seriously contemplating taking such a stance, can give a person a sense of control over their life, a lack of which is what usually results in people feeling so crestfallen that they turn to suicide in the first place.
People often delude themselves that they’re entitled to an opinion. Wrong. You’re entitled to an INFORMED opinion and until you find yourself in a situation where life becomes so bleak that death becomes desirable, if not, a necessity, you are in no way, shape or form allowed to call suicide selfish or cowardly.